5 Questions to ask a film investment company
5 Questions to ask a film investment company
If you are looking to invest in film, knowing the right questions to ask can be the difference between a successful investment and a failure. Knowing the market and the model of the film company you are investing in is vital. However, in such a dynamic and varied industry collecting the facts about investing in film can be difficult.
In this article, we’ll help you narrow down the five most important questions to ask a film company before you invest. Here at Films4U, we pride ourselves on transparency when talking to film investors and producers, giving everyone the best film investment experience.
1) What are the benefits of investing in film?
There are many potential benefits to investing in film. These benefits vary depending on the type of film you are investing in. The main benefit to investing in films is the large returns you may make on a film; these returns could be as much as double what you invest.
When dealing with a film investment company ensure you know what percentage of the profits or expected ROI you will get when the film is released.
There are also non-monetary bonuses of investing in film. These may include:
- Credits as a producer or executive producer
- Tickets to the red carpet event/premier
- Small acting roles
- Visits onto the set
For more information about the benefits of investing in films, read our article on Film Investor Perks.
2) How will the film be released?
This is an important question in understanding how large the filmmakers envision their film is going to be. The wider the release the more likely that the film will make large profits if successful. However, this does often mean more investment into marketing and box office releases. Some sub-questions to consider are:
- Will the film be released in cinemas?
- Is this a global film or will it only be released in the UK?
- Are streaming services involved in the release? (e.g. Netflix and Amazon Prime Video)
- How long do you envision the process will be from investing now to releasing the film?
- Will there be a premier – either a red carpet event or film festival?
- Will there be a trailer released?
- Are there any merchandise deals? (this is usually only applicable to larger budget films)
3) How have you reduced risk for this film?
There are certain ways you can reduce the risk of a film not making profits after the release. Although these methods do not guarantee a film will make money, they often draw in larger audiences and therefore have a higher potential to make a profit. These are often known as strategies to de-risk a film.
The three most common ways to de-risk your project are:
- Schemes such as EIS where there are certain tax incentives and ways to return (some of) your investment should the film not work out. Take a look at this blog post which explains exactly how EIS works.
- Have well-known actors starring in the film. Often audiences will be more likely to go to the cinema to see a film if there is an actor they have heard of in the film.
- Focus on the genre. The type of genre you invest in can make a big difference in how successful your film is. Often if a film is a low budget movie, then being genre-specific can help sell tickets.
4) What are your marketing strategy and social media presence?
This is a great question to ask, especially for independent films. Often a large film studio will have a marketing team behind it, meaning you do not need to worry too much about how they will market their film.
A smaller indie film, however, may not have the experience or personnel to market their film in the same way.
Lacking the experience to market a film is not necessarily a reason not to invest. But, if they have no marketing plan, then this may be an indication of not fully thinking through a film’s release.
Social media presence can also have a huge impact on how companies may market a film. With platforms such as Youtube and Tiktok, videos such as trailers or behind the scenes footage can be shared to engage more people to watch a film when it has been released.
5) How is my money being spent?
By asking this question you, as a film investor, will be able to delve deeper into the financial strategy of the film you are investing into.
Unless you are joining the filmmaking process right at the conception of ideas, then the filmmakers should have a clear idea of how much the film will cost and how they will spend their investor’s money.
However, be aware that this may change throughout the film making process as some expenses increase and others decrease. Therefore, even the most well thought through financial plans may alter over time.
Investing in film can be an exciting and dynamic market to invest in. Hopefully armed with these questions you will be able to ask the right questions to film investment companies to invest in the right film for you. Other questions to consider are:
- What is the reason for making this film?
- What other movies have you been involved with?
- How involved can I be in the film?
- What is the total budget for the film?
- Do you think there will be a sequel?
These questions are not quite as important as the 5 outlined in detail above, but they may still be important to you. The most relevant may be relating to the film investment companies past track record and how successful their previous movies have been. This should give you some indication on the type of company you are working with.
If you are ready to start investing in film and want to talk to a well-established film investment company then talk to us at Films4U. We have years of experience in the industry and an impressive track record to show for it. Contact us today via email or phone call.