Starting your own production company can have many rewards and give you a lot of freedom to produce the movies you choose under your terms free of constraints. Considering launching out on your own? Here are some tips to help you out.
Figure out your niche and role
First, decide on several niches your company will focus on. You can use your past experiences to choose what types of films you enjoyed working with the most as well as the type of content that would best suit you and your company. Also, narrow down your role within the company, such as by researching roles of production company chairman and other film-producer responsibilities.
It may help to write a list of questions and after thinking about it for a while, add your answers. Some questions to ask yourself is:
- Do you want to take on independent film projects with low budgets or would you prefer producing commercially successful films?
- Will you focus primarily on film shorts or feature-length films?
- Will you consider working mostly with movies or would you rather do television pilot programs?
- Will your films consist of action-packed adventures, romantic chick flicks, who-done-it mysteries, laugh out loud comedies, or other?
Choosing a name for your production company
The name you choose for your business is very important because it reflects on the type of business you will run. Therefore, pick something that’s unique, witty, and pertains to your niche, movie type, and genre. For example, if you are going to be working solely with comedy, then use your creativity to come up with a name that’s smart, yet silly. For more serious movies, think of something more dignified.
If you are starting your business with others, this would be a good time to find out how well you work together, if you want the same things, and if you can find something you all can agree on.
The legal process
It’s important that you take the time out to familiarize yourself with the various types of businesses before deciding which to use. A sole proprietorship is the most commonly used among those just starting out and means you are the legal owner of your company and the only one responsible for running the business and everything that goes along with it.
Although this is the easier route to take, it is not recommended for a new production company since it would make you fully responsible for injuries and accidents that take place while working on your movies. A better option is to have a Limited Liability Company (LLC). This structure will allow you to add someone as part owner of the firm and it is flexible in regards to legal liability and taxes. Consult with an attorney to learn more about the legal process for business startups.
Now that you got the legal part taken care of, you can begin hiring the staff necessary to run and promote your business. Here is who you should hire:
- An accounting
- A technical crew
- Film editors
- Talented actors
- Administration staff
- And more.