Getting Funding For Your Documentary Without Selling Out


Funding is a vital part of the production process of your work. Without funding your project may never see the light of day.

There are several channels to which you can obtain funding; through NGOs, charities, corporations, public funding but what is important is finding the right funding for you without having to sell your soul.

The tips below are aimed to help you with that:

1. Be very certain you know precisely what you want and realize your long term goals before talking to prospective investors

2. When potential investors seem to be more interested in validating an opinion instead of examining a disagreement or setting conditions, you need to be wary of them. Especially with documentaries; there should be no true ending to the story since the topics are related with circumstances that carry on existing and developing beyond the lens.

3. To avoid confusion later regarding the right to edit your work or change your content, make sure you consent with the conditions of their involvement in advance. No strings should be attached to their contribution and filmmakers should seek to achieve exactly this every time.

4. Don’t tie yourself down and accept key funding from only one single source. This is to steer clear of being accused of being manipulated improperly by a single source.

5. If you find yourself being steered in the direction of misinformation be vicious that you allowed it to happen. Don’t give yourself a break if you feel you are being manipulated by investors to reach an agenda that opposes what you believe in.

6. If potential backers remain interested despite your extensive examination and securing your limits of freedom and impartiality, you should accept it.

7. Try to work with public networks if you especially with the likes of BBC or PBS. You will be surprised how self-sufficient these networks can actually be under certain circumstances.


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