After a fantastic Turkish dinner with everyone from the campus, and some karaoke pub madness from some students from the campus, we woke the next day and launched into the murky world of budgeting for international co-production with Joel Wykeman.
This was an incredibly helpful session. Joel gave us all a template for a budget and talked us through the whole thing, line by line, and pointed certain bits out that are all too easy to forget. For instance, many productions do not state that they have a Production Accountant, or enough budgeted for legal fees. You must have these shown in your budget as it is lines like this that give the commissioner confidence that you know what you’re doing and you have the right support network around you to complete it competently. They show you, and your production, to be of low risk.
One of Joel’s key tips was to always start your budget with a schedule and break down specific periods of your project, i.e. Development and / or Pre-Production, Production and Post-Production.
The production period should, in theory, be the easiest section to predict and if you have a good knowledge of post-production then this period too should be ok to navigate. The tricky part is including, realistically and reasonably, the development stage and ensuring that you are able to pay yourself fairly at the end of it.
After lunch, we split up into small groups and talked our projects through with Louise Rosen, who specialises in international pre-sales and co-productions for independent producers of non-fiction films. She gave us some great feedback on the project and we look forward to seeing her again at Sheffield Doc/Fest to talk about our project further, particularly about how we can get it seen internationally.