What Was the Film Budget for the Golden Globes Best Picture Nominees?

In order to analyze the film budget level of this years’s awards contenders FilmBudget.com takes a look at this years Golden Globes nominees for Best Motion Picture.  Utilizing data from imdb.com we look at the cost of the film productions leading to the respected awards.

Presented by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, the Golden Globes are often seen as a precursor to the Academy Awards Oscar winners.  With ‘Argo’ winning this year while overlooked by the Academy this clearly distorts that perennial qualification for the nominees.

 

The film budget for the 2013 Golden Globe Awards film productions in the Best Motion Picture category:

 

‘Argo’  $44.5 million

 

‘Lincoln’  $65 million

 

‘Zero Dark Thirty’   $20 million

 

‘Life of Pi’   $120 million

 

‘Django Unchained’   $100 million

Section 181 USA Federal Film Tax Relief Renewed for 2012, 2013

In the last throws of the dwindling days of 2012 a largely untapped source of film finance has encouragingly been renewed.  First reports have come to light about the renewal which was included in the Fiscal Cliff aversion talks.

 

Films from 2012 applying correct documentation and for all of 2013 will have the film tax benefit available to their investors.  Based upon their tax structures the investment in film subject to tax relief is a hard won achievement for the creative film and television industry.

 

GREENTREES #2.7

Filmmakers are required to announced their Section 181 plans in their first tax returns.  Investors can take 100% of their investment as tax relief as opposed to amortizing over several years as generally allowed.   The relief is capped at $15 Million for feature films, which is increased to $20 Million for “distressed” locations.  Television programs qualify for the first 44 episodes.

 

 

 

When presenting such film finance plans to investors it is critical to have an accurate representation of the true cost of the production.  This is critically important to the planning of the investor to precisely know how much his financial input is required.

 

filmbudget.com

 

Contact Filmbudget.com for details on utilizing Section 181 and an accurate,  major studio proven film budget package to know for yourself and demonstrate to investors the true cost of the production expenditure on your movie.

 

Film Producer Jack Binder (‘Reign Over Me’, ‘The Upside of Anger’) has been producing movie and television production for over twenty years and continues under his international film production company Greentrees Films.  As the founder of Filmbudget.com Jack continues to provide the film and television industry with quality film budgets and shooting schedule breakdown services.

 

 

 

Top Five Film Budget Tips for 2014 | Film Budget Inc. | filmbudget.com

Compiled by:   FilmBudget.com  – the global leader in worldwide film budget and schedule production services for the motion picture industry.

FBwhite_180x180As the year draws to a close Filmbudget.com Founder/Producer Jack Binder takes a look back at what lessons can be learned from 2013 for 2014 in the feature film and television production industry. Further, we’ll discuss how they effect a movie budget at any level of production.

1. Accuracy Matters in a Film Budget

As the markets have demanded and proven, there is increased scrutiny on the film budget level and additionally individual expenditures within movie budgets. Small errors in the budget stage could yield exponentially larger impacts on a film’s overall finance scenario.

2. Quality Film Budget Expert

A quality film budget expert is critical to obtain an accurate, proven and reliable movie budget. The line producer and the unit production manager are the crew members tasked with and dedicated to the creation and execution of the production movie budget since the inception of the film industry.

 

alexa23.   The Quality of Your Film Budget Impacts Your Film Finance Success

A major decision all filmmakers must make is with whom to work with in creating the film’s budget. Whether the project is a major studio or indie film production, an accurate budget is key.  Film financiers will certainly judge you based upon the movie budget you submit to them. Unproven inaccurate film budgets will certainly make an impact, and not in a positive way.

 4.  Your Line Producer Creating Your Film Must Have Extensive Knowledge of Film Tax Credits

As a movie budget expert the line producer is constantly updating skills and must have a working knowledge on a worldwide scale.  Extensive knowledge of film tax credits, production incentives both North American and internationally is critical to bring to the film budget process.

 

 Screen Shot 2012-12-26 at 2.13.52 AM

5.  Co-productions Are A Critical Element of Finance

Your line producer creating your custom, proven and accurate film budget (like Filmbudget.com Founder Producer Jack Binder) should likewise have a strong understanding of international co-productions, grants, country and regional film funds and worldwide motion picture financing.

The bottom line is that film finance, though improving, will remain frugal and risk adverse.  Obtaining a professional film budget by a line producer is a fundamental task consistently undertaken by film industry professionals.

 

‘Pacific Rim’ Trailer Released Guillermo del Toro Sci-Fi Movie | Film Budget by FilmBudget.com

Director Guillermo del Toro helmed ‘Pacific Rim’ released its first official trailer for the movie.   Previously only sneak teasers were distributed providing a glimpse of the concept of the action adventure film.  ‘Pacific Rim’ has a reported film budget of $150 million.

YouTube Preview Image

 

 

 

The film stars Bill Pullman, Charlie Hunnam, Ron Perlman, Rinko  Kikuchi and Charlie Day.   The release date is set for July 12, 2013 in 2D and 3D.

 

 

 

 

 

FilmBudget.com

 

FilmBudget.com | Worldwide Movie Budget Expert | The Location Manager

 

 

Producer Jack Binder, filmbudget.com founder, takes a look at the role of the location manager and its impact on the production and the movie budget for motion pictures and television programming.

 

The Location Manager is an extremely critical crew member on a feature film and television show production.  As a lead member and department head the location manager has a great deal of responsibility to the project that he or she is engaged upon.  Generally the location manager is hired and brought on at a very early stage in the preparation of a movie or tv program in order to assist the producer and director at the earliest point in time.

 

The responsibilities of the locations department, for which the manager is the Department Head,  HOD or Head of Department (as referred to in international productions) include working with the producer and director to determine what is required in terms of location filming.  Through meetings with the director, producer(s) and their staff they determine what the script calls for in terms of shooting locations (the places where the filming will occur, or the Set) and with the producer for the movie budget impact the choices will present.

 

Overall responsibilities of the location manager include the following:

 

-determine location requirements

-advise on locales which may be beneficial for setting, film tax credits and natural vistas

-research suggested locations to film the movie

-provide initial options for creative discussion with director

-determination of size of the location department crew members

-analyze costs for preliminary reporting to producer on potential location expenses

-obtain feedback from the director to focus creative vision on the setting for the movie

-confer with producer to ensure locations site rental fees adhere to the overall film budget of the production

-continue research and building location shooting photo library and database

-preliminary contact with location owners to determine possibility of filming at the site as required

-further meetings and presentations with director based on preliminary consultation

-selection of best choices from presented option by director

-obtaining permissions from chosen locations

-reporting to the producer on determined costs for site hire

-secondary contact with location owners to verify costs, any potential scheduling conflicts

-securing of locations (the pencil) temporary hold

-confirmation with the producer and the director

-proceeding to contract for location with the production company

-manage the scheduling of the location in coordination with the First Assistant Director

-manage the preparation of the location with all department heads

-allowance for time and space for the set decoration department

-alllowance for time and space for the grip and lighting departments requirements

-consultation with the Director of Photography for specific needs of camera and lighting for the movie

-consultation with Production Sound Mixer regarding impediments to recording quality audio and dialogue

-oversee the shooting of the production

-load in of crew

-liase with owner(s)

-accomodate neighbors, local businesses

-parking requirements for cast, crew and support vehicles

-lunch room set-up for the catering and diningn of the film crew

-utilization of on-site facilities:  restrooms, support rooms (make-up & hair, production office, etc.)

 Once armed with a directive and knowledge of the needs of the screenplay and the vision of the director, the location manager begins sourcing options for the spots to create the movie setting.  Using their own database and liaising with their colleagues options are compiled.  Through careful review of photographs, videos and online databases as well, places are ranked by favorability and detailed by the area which they are situated in.  By combining these factors with the requirements of the production, suitable places to film are narrowed down.

 

Following a preliminary collating of location photos for presentation to the above the line crew members the location manager will schedule a meeting with the producer and director for review of the options available.  These important sessions yield valuable information for the location manager to narrow down the creative vision of the director.  Likewise they will meet with the producer to ensure that the choices being presented comply with the overall film budget for the movie.  Additionally, the producer will advise if the selections presented fit into the departmental budget for locations.

 

Armed with the creative vision, the film budget parameters and available scope of the locations department budget, the location manager continues to source site for filming and potential crew members to support their responsibilities.

 

Locations crew include:

 

First Assistant Location Manager

 

The Assistant Location Manager is the right hand of the department head.  They likewise have extensive experience in sourcing and securing filming sites for productions.

 

Additional First Assistant Location Manager

 

Second Assistant Location Manager

 

Location Scout(s)

 

 © 2012 Film Budget Inc. / FilmBudget.com

FilmBudget.com Producer Jack Binder to Keynote The Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology – Digital Cinema Symposium

FilmBudget.com Founder and feature film Producer Jack Binder will give the Keynote Address at The Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology – Digital Cinema Symposium.   Binder’s (‘Reign Over Me’, ‘The Upside of Anger’) FilmBudget.com is the international leader in worldwide film budget and schedule production services providing movie budget services for producers and directors worldwide.  The event will take place on Monday, 26 November 2012 in Melbourne, Australia.

Producer Jack Binder will highlight advancements in digital cinema production, capture and acquisition utilizing the current new crop of digital motion picture cameras.  The impact on the movie budget will be discussed as it is impacted by the new technology.

Featuring movie cameras like the Panavision Genesis and the Arri Alexa, Binder will relay the state of the art fim production advancements delivered by these new technologies.  Additionally, the RED Camera, Sony F55 and even the GoPro Hero 3 will be analyzed as movie production tools that filmmakers are using today to create exciting and rich content for the motion picture market.

Binder has been producing feature films and television for twenty-five years for the major studios and independent production companies.  He is the founder of FilmBudget.com through which he creates custom, detailed and accurate film budgets for finance, investors and production companies.

 

Film Budget Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology – Digital Cinema Symposium

 

HFR: High Frame Rate Filmmaking & the Future – ‘The Hobbit’ & Peter Jackson – Film Budget

THE MOVE TO HFR (HIGH FRAME RATE)

 

This December, an attempt to revolutionize film exhibition will be made by Peter Jackson and co. with their film “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey”. The film will be the first of it’s kind, available in a format called HFR 3D.

 

But what is HFR, and why make the move to this format?  What is the effect on the film budget by utilizing this method?

 

HFR stands for High Frame Rate, a somewhat arbitrary name that refers to any frame rate higher than 24 frames per second, which has long been the industry standard for film capture and exhibition. In this case, The Hobbit was captured in 48 frames per second, and the HFR 3D version of the film will allow you to see those extra frames in action.

Shooting at higher frame rates is nothing new. Even most prosumer and many consumer grade cameras can shoot at speeds of 24, 30, or 60fps (if not more), but higher frame rates have never been utilized as an exhibition standard for a major motion picture. The purpose of a higher frame rate is to help reduce the “judder” or “strobing” effect. At 24 fps on a large screen, an object moving quickly across the screen, or a whip pan by the camera can be jarring, because the objects move large distances between each frame. HFR aims to fix this problem by doubling the number of times you see that object in one second, thereby filling in some of the gaps of motion between frames. Is also reduces motion blur, because each image has a shorter exposure time.

Watch the Trailer Here

This idea has been utilized for some time now for sports videos, which often shoot at 60 frames per second because of the fast-paced nature of sports. In 3D cinema, this should help with the strain some viewers experience during high action scenes with lots of movement.

But why 48? Why not use even more frames? While shooting at even higher frame rates is possible, and probable for exhibition someday in the future (assuming HFR is received well), 48 seems to be an good transition for now. By shooting at 48fps, a film can easily be converted to the old standard of 24fps by skipping every other frame. This allows studios to release their movies in both formats, appeasing those who oppose the HFR look (some say it looks “too real”, or has a soap opera look to it).

 

Higher frame rates also yield bigger file sizes and can require different technologies for acquisition and projection, meaning greater budget expense. In visual effects, doubling the number of frames can double the amount of work: A shot of Gollum talking to Bilbo now requires camera tracking, rotoscoping, etc. for twice as many frames!  The impact on a film budget can be significant.   Large movie files take more time across the workflow to handle with more man hours to execute the same scene work.  VFX expense for double the amount frames can essentially multiply the costs upward driving up the movie budget and requirement for production film finance.

In addition to “An Unexpected Journey”, HFR 3D will be used for the next two Hobbit films, and James Cameron also plans to use the new format for his upcoming Avatar sequels. “The Hobbit” will be released in 2D, 3D, IMAX, and IMAX 3D at 24fps, and HFR 3D at select theaters December 14th.

 

Worldwide Film Budget Expert

FilmBudget.com | Sony Announces the New F55 & F5 CineAlta 4K Digital Motion Picture Cameras

 

 

 Return to Filmbudget.com

Sony Announces F5 and F55 Cinema Cameras

 

The digital cinema camera market has been quite competitive as of late: RED has the Epic, Canon has their C-series, and the new kid on the block, Blackmagic Design, has their Cinema Camera.  Depending on the scope of a productions film budget the options remain extensive and growing daily.

 

Sony is now stepping up to the plate with their newly announced PMW-F5 and PMW-F55, slated to be released in January or February of 2013, and it sounds as though they have knocked it out of the park.  The CineAlta motion picture cameras provide filmmakers the tools to shoot their movie production with scalable technical tools depending on the budgets available.

 

 

Both cameras feature a new 4K Super 35mm image sensor (4096 x 2160), a lightweight, modular body, FZ lens mounts (but come with a PL adapter), new, faster SxS cards, and a brand new recording codec (XAVC). Sony will also be releasing their second generation of CineAlta PL prime lenses with the cameras.

 

While the cameras are set to release early next year, the full potential will not be realized until Sony releases a free “planned upgrade” and their external recorder (AXS-R5). See the specs below for more info:

 

Brief specs comparison:

 

 

F55

 

Frame Rates:

 

60 fps out of the box (XAVC HD at launch; XAVC 4K, QFHD and 2K with a planned upgrade)

 

180 fps with a planned upgrade (XAVC 2K/HD). Unique to this process, there is no line skipping or sensor windowing. So there’s no crop factor, no loss in angle of view.

 

240 fps 2K RAW, with the optional AXS-R5 outboard recorder and a planned upgrade, achieves the highest frame rates most productions will need, while retaining exceptional, 16-bit image quality. This not only exceeds 12-bit RAW with 16 times as many Red, Green and Blue gradations. By design, it exceeds the capabilities of human vision!

 

Simultaneous RAW + Onboard SxS recording (with external recorder)

 

4K/2K RAW + XAVC 2K*/HD

4K/2K RAW + MPEG-2 HD422

2K RAW + XAVC 2K*

 

*expected with future upgrade

 

– Global Shutter (eliminates rolling shutter issue)

 

– 4K output via HDMI or 3G-SDI

 

 

F5

 

 

 

60 fps out of the box (XAVC HD).

 

 

 

120 fps with a planned upgrade (XAVC 2K/HD). Unique to this process, there is no line skipping or sensor windowing. So there’s no crop factor, no loss in angle of view.

 

120 fps 2K RAW, with the optional AXS-R5 outboard recorder and a planned upgrade, achieves high frame rates while retaining exceptional, 16-bit image quality. This not only exceeds 12-bit RAW with 16 times as many Red, Green and Blue gradations. By design, it exceeds the capabilities of human vision!

 

 

 

 

 

 

4K/2K RAW + XAVC 2K*/HD

4K/2K RAW + MPEG-2 HD422

 

 

 

– No Global Shutter

 

 

– No 4K out

 

 

 

Price:

 

The official price has yet to be announced, but these cameras are meant to fill in the gap between the F3 and F65, so it is safe to assume somewhere between $16K and $65K, with the F5 being the cheaper of the two.

 

Click here for Sony’s full information page for the F5.

 

Click here for Sony’s full information page for the F55.

A Quick Overview of the Role of the Producer, Executive Producer & the Line Producer

The question often comes up amongst those interested in the film business about what is the difference between an executive producer, producer, co-producer, line producer, etc.  There is a misunderstanding and certain assumptions about what these different roles entail and the responsibilities as such for each job description.  Filmbudget.com decided to shed some light on the topic.

 

Executive Producer

 

The executive producer is generally regarded as the top of the food chain of producers.  While some think of this title as the person who brings the money and they wouldn’t be incorrect in that assumption.  Quite often the executive producer or EP as it is commonly referred to, brings the financing for the film budget of a production.

 

Likewise an EP may bring the top cast or other talent to the motion picture or television program they are involved with.  A growing tradition over the last two decades has been to grant an executive producer credit to the star’s manager.  While this is frowned about by some, the clout these managers generally have who get this can be deemed advantageous for the production, if not critical for obtaining the desired film star.

 

An executive producer may have optioned the material the movie or tv show is based upon.  Obtaining the underlying rights to content which films are made from is a fundamental method for securing a producer credit and often this is granted as an executive producer position.  For example if they bring the rights to a novel that the film is created upon this would be the “underlying rights” of the production without which it could not get made.

 

There are many permutations of the executive producer credit and to whom it is granted.  Often matters of oversight, financial responsibility, access to distribution, talent and foreign sales can impact who receives the credit.

 

Producer

 

The producer of the film is the ultimate film credit that is sought after by filmmakers (or should be.)  The Produced by credit is the most desirable and most often goes to the producer with the most control or importance on the film.  This could be due to the fact that he or she created the story or initiated the project, either by taking an option on a literary property, an outright purchase or by arranging a studio deal for the writer.

 

The producer credit has long be regarded as being earned by the person who brings the project to ether in its entirety, not merely one element (ie. the script, the financing, etc.)  The producer also has the experience to manage the entire production from inception to delivery to distributors of a final project.

 

Likewise, attending to the film budget and ensuring the the production does not go over budget or over schedule is the responsibility of the producer as well.  Dealing with the day to day problems and situations on the movie set is overseen by the producer working in tandem with the line producer to adequately execute the production.

 

 

Line Producer

 

The line producer is the hands on expert charged with delivering the film into the “can”, or what we call today capturing the data.  Line producers are seasoned unit production managers who have been working on film productions for many years and have moved up the ladder of the production tower.

 

This producer oversees all physical production elements from wardrobe to lighting and transportation to catering.  The line producer is generally the most overall knowledgable person on the team who knows how to put together a film production and prepare it for shooting.  They are trained by experience, learning and the hard lessons of production over many years and films.

 

Creating the film budget is the responsibility of the line producer.  In preparation for film financing, production and distribution the movie budget must be generated by a professional line producer with extensive experience in producing films.

 

 

Unit Production Manager

 

The unit production manager, or UPM, is a Director’s Guild of America (DGA) category designation for those members who are skilled at producing film and television productions from a management point of view.

 

Also known as production managers, the upm’s work with the line producer in managing the motion picture crew, the film budget and the shooting schedule.  By working with heads of departments (HODs) to determine their fiscal requirements and limits the upm ascertains from each the state of their budgets in comparison to the overall movie budget for a production.

 

The unit production manager must also be a liaison between the production and the studio, financiers or production company with regard to physical production.

 

 

While certainly not the most profound and detailed explanation for the roles of the producer on a film production, hopefully this article provides a bit of clarity on these critical elements of the production team.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

American Film Market | AFM 2012

 

As November approaches the international film industry steadfastly prepares for the American Film Market in Los Angeles.

Industry executives, producers, directors look to the AFM for a good jump on global sales of their film productions.

Foreign Sales company’s slates are evaluated and perfected.  Every film budget is prepared, evaluated and revised to meet the cost structure of the current landscape for independent film.

Marketing materials are being created, edited and finalized in preparation for presentation to the global business.

 

What:  American Film Market (AFM)

When:  October 31 – November 7, 2012

Where:  Santa Monica, California

Website:   http://www.americanfilmmarket.com/

Each year the hordes of movie executives descend on the the seaside town of Santa Monica California to make international distribution deals for their film and video productions.  Buyers from around the globe likewise are in full force looking for that next hot product but also the standard fare the makes up their day to day schedule of releases.

 

Distributors look to the AFM to increase their reach in worldwide penetration of markets and deals for their product to be licensed in every territory of the world.  Taking over the many hotels that line the beach, the companies take residence in hotel rooms and suites, fill them with staff, posters, one sheets and televisions to play dvds and hard drive trailers for prospective buyers.  It is truly a selling market, much as any industry sector would provide.

Conferences as well are a stable of the American Film Market with industry leaders, movers and shakers presenting panels and discussions on all aspects of the film business.  Topics include production, distribution, movie budget levels, new media, digital platforms and film tax credits and incentives programs.   Likewise co-production treaties are often explained and detailed by the attending experts.

 

 

Film Finance is always a central theme to the AFM and the Conference Series delivers top finance professionals discussing the current state of film finance, marketing, pitching, film festivals, VOD and streaming of film product.

Central to the AFM on the trade floors at the Loews Hotel are likewise film commissions presence in booths with staffers explaining the various territories film tax incentives regimin.   Locations executives laud their country or state for its natural or urban beauty, film tax credits or film friendly attitude.   As competition has grown for production dollars these events are seen as a critical attendance for these entities to tout their place in the production pipeline.

 

Altogether the AFM represents the fabric of the film finance and distribution world for the independent film community.  International productions are launched bought and sold here.

As the motion picture industry has evolved in the face of the global financial meltdown the importance of AFM has actually grown.   Producers must lower their film budget to meet the challenges of the marketplace and distributors must provide product for their buyers at the right price.

As Studio production has ebbed in this new world, the access to high end talent by indie film producers has increased, leading to a new crop of independent films hitting the screens of the market.