Producer asked to donate help

AsilBasil

Member
Dear Fellow Filmmakers,

Bear with me, this is long and involved and takes some time to read through, but I would so very much appreciate your take on it. The reason why I'm not asking my colleagues is because I'm embarrassed to. I don't want to look naive and that I don't know what I'm doing and so want to stay fairly anonymous. Neither do I want to look stupid for getting involved in an indie crowdfunder film, even though it's becoming more of an accepted practice.

Since the advent of crowdfunding, entire films have been shot, edited and shopped from crowdfunding funds. Crowdfunding which are, most of the time, funded by laymen outside of the industry looking for a few perks and that's that.
However, I'm a fairly established writer/director in the business for several years who saw a guy making what looked to be a potentially really great film using crowdfunding. So, I donated 1k to the project thinking it was a great cause. I cared about the cause because it struck a very personal note to me. It still does. I contacted the director who was also an actor (without representation) and also running the crowdfunding campaign. He was the consummate salesman even when he didn't need to be with me, but I thought the fact he was able to get a song donated to his film from a major band was impressive and I told him that. I saw true potential in him too. I also believed since I have been in the business several years that I was 'safe' and could protect myself from manipulation and scammery. The 1k that I donated is under my name and not under my company's name.

Fast forward several months, he's filming it and posting selective information online to appease people on his crowdfunding page and social media. I contacted him again and he was very receptive to my offering to help him with festivals. We had a vision and it was exciting! I also requested that he move the film title on IMDb to my pre-existing IMDb credit instead of the new producer credit he had created for me. I was a bit taken aback that he started a whole new credit for me instead of the existing one, but I try to stay humble just because it's the right thing to do. At that same time, since I saw huge potential and loved the premise I agreed to donate my expertise. It was not to get any financial gains but solely because he was acting like he needed the help and couldn't afford to hire and I truly believed in the film.

So, I went to work and started taking the steps to enter into Cannes. This is where it gets murky and confusing and somewhat regretful. Upon post production, I reported back to him that he had a few months to finish post before the Cannes submission deadline. Strangely, it sounded like he was under the impression he could submit 'as is' and then submit a second finished product to Cannes. I told him that whatever you submit to Cannes, that's what they screen (although you can edit the film after Cannes before release). Okay, he said fine and that they would working on post to aim specifically for Cannes. He also posted on his donor page that he wanted to take it to Cannes. About a month ahead of time I touched base again and he told me that they probably wouldn't have it done by then. That's it? Why didn't he tell me such an important revelation earlier? How could it just slip his mind? I had already put work into the paper work of getting into Cannes. I put in one last push to try to submit it in time. Could his team donate their time and work a bit longer hours just to get it in? He said no and that they would have to be paid. He then stated that he wanted it to be perfect and didn't want to rush but it would definitely be finished in a couple of weeks in time for the opening of the Venice submission date. I completely agreed, but then he said something strange - that Cannes was a vain festival and way over rated anyway. Okay, Oscar Winner. He then said he had scheduled a voice over session for the day before the deadline so there was no way they'd get it in in time. Again, why didn't he tell me this earlier?!

At this point, I am starting to feel a bit off since I had told him on a few occasions the deadline and he certainly didn't think Cannes was vain then. I couldn't believe that he didn't know. Was he playing stupid? I still hadn't asked for a consulting credit acknowledging me as a consulting producer. I was still stuck with the crowdfunding producer credit and I didn't like that because it didn't specify that I was doing work and not only a crowdfunder that donated 1k. Plus he seemed to be bullcrapping me. I had made sure that he wanted my services. I thought we had somewhat of an agreement. We had several specific step by step conversations about what I think we should do to enter films into festivals. He asked me about my vision for Venice. I thought I was part of the tight-nit team. Boy, did I feel stupid. During that time, I noticed he had just put two big name actors up playing the leads. Chances are he could not afford the actors with the limited crowdfunding he had gotten up until then, even though it was an impressive amount. But again, I was reeled back in. I started ignoring my doubts again. I don't know if they signed for day shoots or decided to get a backend percentage. At this point, I decided to ask for the credit. He basically said no because he had other 'established' producers advising him on festivals. What?! It was obvious I was being pushed out and he started belittling my work. Did I offend him when I said that they could have moved the voice over session to earlier? Maybe he told his other producers that I messed up on the deadline date and it was all my fault. Remember, I didn't know about the major actors and so didn't realise the session was contingent on their availability. He shot back with this really long and emotional message about how he thought I was rude and that I had 'upset' him. Never in my career have I been guilt-tripped so badly. I didn't think he was professional because to survive in this business, you can't fly off the handle when someone politely points out a mistake you made, especially if the person had gone over it on several occasions and if the intent was to help you.

Again, I looked over our previous communication and then wrote him again. I politely, but firmly, told him how and why I was consulting him the way I was. Without blaming him, I listed the missing crucial details that he had not given me that would have changed my perception of and reaction to the situation. But I also asked him why he still had listed Cannes as a festival he wants to enter in competition on his donor site if he knows now the film won't make it and the deadline's over. He shot back saying he has a learning disability that caused him to not see most of my messages about the deadline and that's why he scheduled everything the way he did. But that flies in the face of him telling me he has more 'established' producers advising him on Cannes. Even then, he made it sound like he still believed he could enter it next year even after showing it at Venice and Toronto. I kept reiterating that key point, that this is it and that if this deadline is missed, the hopes of Cannes is over forever. So, he later said that his producers emailed Cannes and asked if they could submit into competition in April. I don't know if he's naive, delusional, a scammer, or just really ambitious but Cannes wrote back saying 'No'. Either way, of course Cannes said no, his film is not a huge film and why he was asking for special treatment upon his first submission to Cannes is, well, bold to say the least. So, after feeling thoroughly down trodden and dismissed I wrote him politely backing away. I also told him I donated over 2k worth of professional services, whether he used them or not, and I felt underappreciated, even if he does have a learning disability.

It has been disappointing for me for a few reasons because I had been there since pre-production and felt like I was being dismissed. But again, I was trying to stay humble because of I believe in the film. Someone said to me, 'What if he's not giving anyone credit for anything? What if he's said he's hiring people but not paying them and pocketing the money?'. Possible?

Anyway, within a couple days of removing myself from donating my expertise, I got an email from a distributor colleague (already in my contacts) asking about the project. I didn't know what to think. Did she notice the film under my imdb or is that too self centred of me to think that? Did she notice my tweets online pumping the film? Did he suggest she email me? Or was it simply by pure chance that she decided to shoot out an email to me about it. I didn't want to get involved again but I did email her back and ask if he'd gotten back to her. I messaged the director and he said that he also got an email from that distributor (and a few others actually). He said, 'Was it so and so? I have a meeting with another huge distributor 'So and so' coming up'. I felt stuck. What do I do? He could be hoping I'll go back to her and show my hand without being actually on the film anymore. She emailed me and said he had and that they'd 'circle back' when 'your team' is ready. Okay, but I'm not on the team anymore. What now?

Anyway, I chose to forget about the entire thing, and went along with my own projects and registering for Cannes on my own as I have for the past 10 years, and posting about it on social media as I usually do. Yesterday I saw a post by him saying they are taking the film to Cannes! What?! I suppose that's great but what the heck? So I checked Cinando and he wasn't on it for Cannes and neither was his 'team'. By then I really started wondering why he's not going the distribution catalogue route that my colleague offered him and still asking laymen for crowdfunding money under the premise of finding (not securing) distribution. He had extended the crowdfunding to the end of this year. Is it he doesn't want to get serious? Why not? So I checked his IMDb and saw that his team consists of four guys he's worked with for years. The same 4 guys! And not one of them has ever gotten a distribution or release. Neither have they entered it into any festival. And none of their films revealed the budget. More disturbingly, he had made it sound like he just met them. Generally speaking, if you know someone in this business you either tout it or don't say anything. You don't pretend you just met them. Criminals do that sort of thing.

Still, the pendulum swings back in my mind, maybe this film is it. I wonder if they only had bad luck before and that's why none of their films have been theatrically released. Maybe it'll be a huge success! Or maybe he's scamming all the actors and donors. Why is he making me look like just another crowdfunder? Why can't I have a separate production credit outside of his buddies and a credit derived from being hired? I woke up worried that he's going to tell people I'm representing the project in Cannes, when I'm not. And kicked myself for posting about registering for the festival. Nobody would be the wiser, because no official paper work is being shared here. My question is: is this a scam? If I am only a crowdfunder without a separate production credit outside of his buddies and not a credit derived from being hired and paid, am I allowed to see the books?

Suffice it to say, since he is now saying on twitter he's taking it to Cannes this year, I am at a complete loss as to what to do. Should I jump back in and help with Cannes and Venice, should I lay low, or should I run?
What do you guys think?
 
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directorik

IndieTalk's Resident Guru
I'd be glad to bear with you but you've got to break up this
mass of text with some paragraphs.

Welcome to indietalk!
 

directorik

IndieTalk's Resident Guru
My question is: is this a scam? If I am only a crowdfunder without a separate production credit outside of his buddies and not a credit derived from being hired and paid, am I allowed to see the books?
With this info I have no way of knowing if it's a scam. But
as a crowdfunder you are not entitled to see his books.

Suffice it to say, since he is now saying on twitter he's taking it to Cannes this year, I am at a complete loss as to what to do. Should I jump back in and help with Cannes and Venice, should I lay low, or should I run?
What do you guys think?
From reading only one side and not knowing you I'm sorry
to say I can't answer. But it's an interesting story. Not very
unusual at all.

Sound like you've been in the business for a while so you've
"seen it all", but then you see something you've never seen.
It's happened to me, too.

He isn't treating you as you want to be treated. He seems to
see you as not much more than anyone else to donated to his
campaign. He used your experience when it suited him and
then pulled back when he found others. You are not telling me
this is unusual in your experience...
 

AsilBasil

Member
With this info I have no way of knowing if it's a scam. But
as a crowdfunder you are not entitled to see his books.


He used your experience when it suited him and
then pulled back when he found others. You are not telling me
this is unusual in your experience...
But if I had a consultant producer credit would I be privy to his books? Surely the distributor would. They'd perform due diligence before signing anything..

And that is how I feel. And I tried to tell him that. He tried to give me a 'prize' of tickets at Toronto and if that would be terrific if I was just a regular crowdfunder. On the other hand I wa humbled yesterday when a fairly big name raved on social media about receiving tickets from him for a screening.. Maybe I was being ungrateful.

Forgive me, what is it you mean by 'You are not telling me this is unusual in your experience'
Do you mean I'm used to people using my expertise without paying? Because that it'strue. I'm trying to do some self-reflection lately and posting here is part of it.. if you feel you deserve credit and feel you aren't getting it, how do you ask for it? If this guy is legit, he obviously feels I don't have what it takes. I need to step up and self champion.
 

mlesemann

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Have you seen any of this guy's other projects - are they streaming somewhere? Are they any good?

My gut reaction is that the guy is 98% talk and you're lucky to be out of it.

But I could be 100% wrong.
 

directorik

IndieTalk's Resident Guru
But if I had a consultant producer credit would I be privy to his books? Surely the distributor would. They'd perform due diligence before signing anything..
Yes. If the current deal changes you would be entitled to
whatever that deal includes. As I understand it, you currently
are no more than a crowdfunder who volunteered to do more
work with him. You would like to have some kind of contract
but you do not. Am I correct?

And that is how I feel. And I tried to tell him that. He tried to give me a 'prize' of tickets at Toronto and if that would be terrific if I was just a regular crowdfunder.
Perhaps I missed something. In HIS eyes are you more than
a regular crowdfunder? Has he agreed (in writing) on you
being more than a regular crowdfunder?

Forgive me, what is it you mean by 'You are not telling me this is unusual in your experience'
Do you mean I'm used to people using my expertise without paying? Because that it'strue.
Then I am mistaken. I made a poor assumption.

In my years in this business I have run across many people who
promise things they do not deliver. I assumed wrongly that you
have also.
I'm trying to do some self-reflection lately and posting here is part of it.. if you feel you deserve credit and feel you aren't getting it, how do you ask for it? If this guy is legit, he obviously feels I don't have what it takes. I need to step up and self champion.
If I feel I deserve credit I'm not getting I would bring that up.
I would ask in writing. Email and/or a registered letter (how old
school) laying out exactly what I have done and will do and exactly
how I expect to be compensated. Even if that compensation is
no more than a specific credit.

However, I know of no way to make someone give credit they do
not want to give. Sometimes it's "lesson learned". Since you have
never come across someone like this I can understand how frustrating
it is. I've come across far too many...
 

AsilBasil

Member
Yes. If the current deal changes you would be entitled to
whatever that deal includes. As I understand it, you currently
are no more than a crowdfunder who volunteered to do more
work with him. You would like to have some kind of contract
but you do not. Am I correct?
Yes. I have talked to a mentor about this and he first said get a contract or walk away. And I did. Then I saw the big name actors the guy got on the film and went back to my mentor with that info. He assured me that I know how to play the game and I should do so. Now, one could say take it is an experience and forget about it. But I've done that too many times and this time I'm not leaving without a fight. I KNOW the guy is bsing about his buddies consulting him 'better' than me, otherwise they would never have missed the deadline. In addition, would any other true professional donate their time? No. Again, I'm doing it for the premise and cause the film represents. And he knows that. If anything, it's his treatment of me that is in direct contrast to the spirit of the film.



Perhaps I missed something. In HIS eyes are you more than
a regular crowdfunder? Has he agreed (in writing) on you
being more than a regular crowdfunder?
Yes! I have emails and dm's showing we had several conversations about what, when, and exactly how I would submit the films to festivals. But it's when he didn't tell me about the voice over session that I realized that I'm not in the loop. Maybe he was just too afraid to tell the actors he needed to reschedule them so he said nothing, took the fall, then blamed his dyslexia for not reading my emails properly Also we have to consider that his audio guy messed up and it was because of him they needed the voice over session. Maybe deep down, he's pissed off at the audio guy and when I questioned the whole debacle he projected his anger onto me instead of his buddy who was the one who messed up. Really, they had 3 months to get it right and they still missed the deadline. They gave up and I called them on it. But, it's not my project and I can't make anyone hurry it up if they don't want to.


Then I am mistaken. I made a poor assumption.

In my years in this business I have run across many people who
promise things they do not deliver. I assumed wrongly that you
have also.

If I feel I deserve credit I'm not getting I would bring that up.
I would ask in writing. Email and/or a registered letter (how old
school) laying out exactly what I have done and will do and exactly
how I expect to be compensated. Even if that compensation is
no more than a specific credit.
I did do that, but that's when he dismissed my work and claimed his 'established' producers (whomever they are) were advising him all along and everything I sent to him just plum didn't exist, because of his dyslexia.. That's when I backed away. I told him I donated 2k worth of work and I itemiized in writing what I had done for them. And it was infuriating for me that he dismissed it by saying he never saw any of what I sent because he has freaken dyslexia! My feeling is, his friends have limited talent but by keeping them around he is sabotaging himself and deep down he knows it but he can't admit it. To. pay people who didn't even know simple submission deadlines is beyond me, except if they are long time friends whom he has a twisted loyalty to.

However, I know of no way to make someone give credit they do
not want to give. Sometimes it's "lesson learned". Since you have
never come across someone like this I can understand how frustrating
it is. I've come across far too many...
That's why I'm writing this. Unless I'm delusional, I think I still have some wiggle room. I've been settling for 'lesson learned' for years now and I'm not doing it anymore. I did the work and he cannot say I didn't. He DID say at one point he'd have to consult with his buddies to give me a consultant producer's credit. However, somehow the talks just broke down and, instead, he came back and belittled my work. I certainly don't want to get back involved if it's not worth it in the end. However, at the beginning, I truly had big plans for this and felt really excited with it. Now, I feel really really stupid that he blatantly lied only because he just doesn't want to give me credit (perhaps in order to protect his buddies). I feel duped and bullied. Perhaps I know deep down it's not going to work out because I won't be apppreciated by them. Perhaps the film will make millions and I'll get a bad taste in my mouth every time I hear the title knowing that I didn't play my cards right. I just don't want to be the loser.
 
Dear Fellow Filmmakers,

Bear with me, this is long and involved and takes some time to read through, but I would so very much appreciate your take on it. The reason why I'm not asking my colleagues is because I'm embarrassed to. I don't want to look naive and that I don't know what I'm doing and so want to stay fairly anonymous. Neither do I want to look stupid for getting involved in an indie crowdfunder film, even though it's becoming more of an accepted practice.

Since the advent of crowdfunding, entire films have been shot, edited and shopped from crowdfunding funds. Crowdfunding which are, most of the time, funded by laymen outside of the industry looking for a few perks and that's that.
However, I'm a fairly established writer/director in the business for several years who saw a guy making what looked to be a potentially really great film using crowdfunding. So, I donated 1k to the project thinking it was a great cause. I cared about the cause because it struck a very personal note to me. It still does. I contacted the director who was also an actor (without representation) and also running the crowdfunding campaign. He was the consummate salesman even when he didn't need to be with me, but I thought the fact he was able to get a song donated to his film from a major band was impressive and I told him that. I saw true potential in him too. I also believed since I have been in the business several years that I was 'safe' and could protect myself from manipulation and scammery. The 1k that I donated is under my name and not under my company's name.

Fast forward several months, he's filming it and posting selective information online to appease people on his crowdfunding page and social media. I contacted him again and he was very receptive to my offering to help him with festivals. We had a vision and it was exciting! I also requested that he move the film title on IMDb to my pre-existing IMDb credit instead of the new producer credit he had created for me. I was a bit taken aback that he started a whole new credit for me instead of the existing one, but I try to stay humble just because it's the right thing to do. At that same time, since I saw huge potential and loved the premise I agreed to donate my expertise. It was not to get any financial gains but solely because he was acting like he needed the help and couldn't afford to hire and I truly believed in the film.

So, I went to work and started taking the steps to enter into Cannes. This is where it gets murky and confusing and somewhat regretful. Upon post production, I reported back to him that he had a few months to finish post before the Cannes submission deadline. Strangely, it sounded like he was under the impression he could submit 'as is' and then submit a second finished product to Cannes. I told him that whatever you submit to Cannes, that's what they screen (although you can edit the film after Cannes before release). Okay, he said fine and that they would working on post to aim specifically for Cannes. He also posted on his donor page that he wanted to take it to Cannes. About a month ahead of time I touched base again and he told me that they probably wouldn't have it done by then. That's it? Why didn't he tell me such an important revelation earlier? How could it just slip his mind? I had already put work into the paper work of getting into Cannes. I put in one last push to try to submit it in time. Could his team donate their time and work a bit longer hours just to get it in? He said no and that they would have to be paid. He then stated that he wanted it to be perfect and didn't want to rush but it would definitely be finished in a couple of weeks in time for the opening of the Venice submission date. I completely agreed, but then he said something strange - that Cannes was a vain festival and way over rated anyway. Okay, Oscar Winner. He then said he had scheduled a voice over session for the day before the deadline so there was no way they'd get it in in time. Again, why didn't he tell me this earlier?!

At this point, I am starting to feel a bit off since I had told him on a few occasions the deadline and he certainly didn't think Cannes was vain then. I couldn't believe that he didn't know. Was he playing stupid? I still hadn't asked for a consulting credit acknowledging me as a consulting producer. I was still stuck with the crowdfunding producer credit and I didn't like that because it didn't specify that I was doing work and not only a crowdfunder that donated 1k. Plus he seemed to be bullcrapping me. I had made sure that he wanted my services. I thought we had somewhat of an agreement. We had several specific step by step conversations about what I think we should do to enter films into festivals. He asked me about my vision for Venice. I thought I was part of the tight-nit team. Boy, did I feel stupid. During that time, I noticed he had just put two big name actors up playing the leads. Chances are he could not afford the actors with the limited crowdfunding he had gotten up until then, even though it was an impressive amount. But again, I was reeled back in. I started ignoring my doubts again. I don't know if they signed for day shoots or decided to get a backend percentage. At this point, I decided to ask for the credit. He basically said no because he had other 'established' producers advising him on festivals. What?! It was obvious I was being pushed out and he started belittling my work. Did I offend him when I said that they could have moved the voice over session to earlier? Maybe he told his other producers that I messed up on the deadline date and it was all my fault. Remember, I didn't know about the major actors and so didn't realise the session was contingent on their availability. He shot back with this really long and emotional message about how he thought I was rude and that I had 'upset' him. Never in my career have I been guilt-tripped so badly. I didn't think he was professional because to survive in this business, you can't fly off the handle when someone politely points out a mistake you made, especially if the person had gone over it on several occasions and if the intent was to help you.

Again, I looked over our previous communication and then wrote him again. I politely, but firmly, told him how and why I was consulting him the way I was. Without blaming him, I listed the missing crucial details that he had not given me that would have changed my perception of and reaction to the situation. But I also asked him why he still had listed Cannes as a festival he wants to enter in competition on his donor site if he knows now the film won't make it and the deadline's over. He shot back saying he has a learning disability that caused him to not see most of my messages about the deadline and that's why he scheduled everything the way he did. But that flies in the face of him telling me he has more 'established' producers advising him on Cannes. Even then, he made it sound like he still believed he could enter it next year even after showing it at Venice and Toronto. I kept reiterating that key point, that this is it and that if this deadline is missed, the hopes of Cannes is over forever. So, he later said that his producers emailed Cannes and asked if they could submit into competition in April. I don't know if he's naive, delusional, a scammer, or just really ambitious but Cannes wrote back saying 'No'. Either way, of course Cannes said no, his film is not a huge film and why he was asking for special treatment upon his first submission to Cannes is, well, bold to say the least. So, after feeling thoroughly down trodden and dismissed I wrote him politely backing away. I also told him I donated over 2k worth of professional services, whether he used them or not, and I felt underappreciated, even if he does have a learning disability.

It has been disappointing for me for a few reasons because I had been there since pre-production and felt like I was being dismissed. But again, I was trying to stay humble because of I believe in the film. Someone said to me, 'What if he's not giving anyone credit for anything? What if he's said he's hiring people but not paying them and pocketing the money?'. Possible?

Anyway, within a couple days of removing myself from donating my expertise, I got an email from a distributor colleague (already in my contacts) asking about the project. I didn't know what to think. Did she notice the film under my imdb or is that too self centred of me to think that? Did she notice my tweets online pumping the film? Did he suggest she email me? Or was it simply by pure chance that she decided to shoot out an email to me about it. I didn't want to get involved again but I did email her back and ask if he'd gotten back to her. I messaged the director and he said that he also got an email from that distributor (and a few others actually). He said, 'Was it so and so? I have a meeting with another huge distributor 'So and so' coming up'. I felt stuck. What do I do? He could be hoping I'll go back to her and show my hand without being actually on the film anymore. She emailed me and said he had and that they'd 'circle back' when 'your team' is ready. Okay, but I'm not on the team anymore. What now?

Anyway, I chose to forget about the entire thing, and went along with my own projects and registering for Cannes on my own as I have for the past 10 years, and posting about it on social media as I usually do. Yesterday I saw a post by him saying they are taking the film to Cannes! What?! I suppose that's great but what the heck? So I checked Cinando and he wasn't on it for Cannes and neither was his 'team'. By then I really started wondering why he's not going the distribution catalogue route that my colleague offered him and still asking laymen for crowdfunding money under the premise of finding (not securing) distribution. He had extended the crowdfunding to the end of this year. Is it he doesn't want to get serious? Why not? So I checked his IMDb and saw that his team consists of four guys he's worked with for years. The same 4 guys! And not one of them has ever gotten a distribution or release. Neither have they entered it into any festival. And none of their films revealed the budget. More disturbingly, he had made it sound like he just met them. Generally speaking, if you know someone in this business you either tout it or don't say anything. You don't pretend you just met them. Criminals do that sort of thing.

Still, the pendulum swings back in my mind, maybe this film is it. I wonder if they only had bad luck before and that's why none of their films have been theatrically released. Maybe it'll be a huge success! Or maybe he's scamming all the actors and donors. Why is he making me look like just another crowdfunder? Why can't I have a separate production credit outside of his buddies and a credit derived from being hired? I woke up worried that he's going to tell people I'm representing the project in Cannes, when I'm not. And kicked myself for posting about registering for the festival. Nobody would be the wiser, because no official paper work is being shared here. My question is: is this a scam? If I am only a crowdfunder without a separate production credit outside of his buddies and not a credit derived from being hired and paid, am I allowed to see the books?

Suffice it to say, since he is now saying on twitter he's taking it to Cannes this year, I am at a complete loss as to what to do. Should I jump back in and help with Cannes and Venice, should I lay low, or should I run?
What do you guys think?
Ok...so to sum this up....you donated money for a film...wanted him to finish it before a certain deadline so it was ready for cannes and he did not do this...
 

AsilBasil

Member
Ok...so to sum this up....you donated money for a film...wanted him to finish it before a certain deadline so it was ready for cannes and he did not do this...
I donated the money last year because I believed in the film. There was no talk of festivals until later in the year.
He and I were discussing festivals closer to post, when he suggested I help him with the festival circuit. It was he who wanted to finish in time for Cannes.
I am a filmmaker with other projects on the go, this is the first time I've donated to a film crowdfund. However, I have a decade worth of experience on the festival circuit.
 
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AsilBasil

Member
Have you seen any of this guy's other projects - are they streaming somewhere? Are they any good?

My gut reaction is that the guy is 98% talk and you're lucky to be out of it.

But I could be 100% wrong.
I've seen the work. It's good. Otherwise I wouldn't want to be involved.

However, perhaps his emotions are why he's not where he could be. Especially when he started guilt tripping me for asking what happened with the audio. He completely flew off the handle and said I was rude and that I upset him. His extreme feelings are not my responsibility, especially if he's just not telling me stuff.
 

directorik

IndieTalk's Resident Guru
That's why I'm writing this. Unless I'm delusional, I think I still have some wiggle room.
Maybe you do. Are you thinking you might have some legal
recourse?

This guy is BSing about his buddies consulting him better than
you, he takes out his anger on the audio guy on you, he makes
absurd excuses to you, he blatantly lied to you and you know
you won't be appreciated by him or his friends. Yet you still want
to be directly involved in this project.

You can't make him change his mind so are you considering
involving a lawyer to force him to signing a consulting producer
agreement?

In addition, would any other true professional donate their time? No.
I did find this curious. You donated your time. Why do you think
no other true professional would do the same? It sounds like one
hell of a great project that struck a very personal note with you so
it doesn't seem out of the realm of possibility that it would strike
others the same way. It better if it's going to be a successful movie.

I hope you stick around here at indietalk; I'd love to know what
happens and we could use someone here who has a decade worth of
experience on the festival circuit to offer advice.
 

AsilBasil

Member
Maybe you do. Are you thinking you might have some legal
recourse?

This guy is BSing about his buddies consulting him better than
you, he takes out his anger on the audio guy on you, he makes
absurd excuses to you, he blatantly lied to you and you know
you won't be appreciated by him or his friends. Yet you still want
to be directly involved in this project.

You can't make him change his mind so are you considering
involving a lawyer to force him to signing a consulting producer
agreement?


I did find this curious. You donated your time. Why do you think
no other true professional would do the same? It sounds like one
hell of a great project that struck a very personal note with you so
it doesn't seem out of the realm of possibility that it would strike
others the same way. It better if it's going to be a successful movie.

I hope you stick around here at indietalk; I'd love to know what
happens and we could use someone here who has a decade worth of
experience on the festival circuit to offer advice.
This answer is bitter sweet but not surprising. Yes, the film will do well, but unfortunately my work on it will probably not be appreciated. It stings because you're right, he won't change (without therapy lol) and I am only beating my head against the wall. It's best I concentrate on my own projects and put as much effort into them as I did his.
I don't believe other professionals would have donated their time like I did because they would have got a contract upfront. I was unprofessional by hoping against hope he'd credit me. Just the fact he never sent anything over or requested me to do so was indication enough. But again, I loved the project and he pulled on my heartstrings. Which was wrong of him. I may have made a huge error pointing out the problem with his audio guy but again he acted like they'd just met. They misrepresented their professional relationship in order to manipulate me and perhaps even others. And that's not cool. Of course he's going to take his side over me. And that's what he did if his over the top emotional outburst is any indication. However, I wonder what the actors thought: a) about the audio mess up and b) about missing the Cannes deadline. Real professionals just won't hinge their careers on a bunch of high school buddies. In this business you either adapt or you fall away. You must be reliable and trustworhy. Reputation is everything. I think I did him a favour by calling him out. Unfortunately, for everyone involved his misplaced loyalty affected them. His friend will either drag him down with him or wake up and realise he needs to step up.
As for me, the director and I didn't part on bad terms. So that's why I say I might have wiggle room to negotiate a credit. I still have the messages and may seek legal advice if it's worth it for me and it is becoming apparent that the film is going to make a huge amount. Perhaps that's why he got so discombobulated because he got some sort of legal advice that put me in a bad light. But he's a grown man and we made an agreement that I handle things. He can't just say it never happened even though I'm not expecting money right now. That's crazy talk.
That said, just you acknowledging that I may be useful to others really resonates with me. People have different currencies - perhaps I found out my currency is appreciation and approval. Which is not a bad thing, per se, but certainly can be a detrimant if I can't see it and wiley people like him can and use it against me. Socrates said: 'Know thyself'
 

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