With all this recent talk of ol’ craggy faced Robert Redford invading the UK (with his Sundance Film Festival), it got me thinking about other, truly independent films and filmmaking. Specifically I mean two, rather interesting independent filmmakers. The first being a Brit lad by the name of AD Lane, whose unique approach to funding is getting a lot of attention.
What is unique about AD Lane is ability to drum up support for his completely fan funded film trilogy. He has a vision and he’s not afraid to use Twitter to access it. Admittedly self-publicity is far from a new concept but by using a social media network such as Twitter, he has gained a devout following for his film cause (which is itself, completely funded by film fans).
Its inspiring stuff for anyone looking to finance either their first feature or short film and from experience (during my university years as I studied and backed my own shorts) this is incredibly difficult to achieve at times. It truly is a testament to AD’s determination to have his trilogy finished and independently distributed via his own means. Its brave, bold and most certainly should be commended.
The second truly independent filmmaker who instantly gains my appreciation (along with all the talented crews who start out with him) is the infamous Troma founder, Lloyd Kaufman. Anyone who has witnessed one of the many varied and unique features they have churned out, know the true extent of film madness. Just looked at the legendary Toxic Avenger (currently due to film it’s fifth feature), the mad and bad (but totally brilliant) Terror Firmer. Oh and let’s not forget the most recent Poultrygeist or Fathers Day. Two of their newest features all individually financed.
It’s pretty impressive when you also consider that Kaufman and Co have been going for around 40 years. For a small independent company they have truly stood the test of time. They make movies for those who enjoy interesting and diverse filmmaking. And for 40+ years they have been inspiring a generation of new filmmakers. Much like Roger Corman did all those years before (Kaufman himself has quoted and is friends with Corman).
I think what I’m trying to get at, is that if you are genuinely passionate about making a film, why would you need to care about being part of supposedly independent film festival (such as Sundance). Not every good film has to be so independent that it gains Oscar nominations or critical acclaim.
Being distributed by a film star and financially backed by them, won’t necessarily garner you with fame and fortune. Make the film your way under your rules and look that even now people like AD Lane and Lloyd are inspiring either new talent or old. And in such a cynical world as we live in at the moment people continue to be pioneers in such a difficult field as Filmmaking.
So continue to support independent film pioneers (a term I do not use lightly) such as these guys. This is what true independent film is about, fingers crossed more switched on filmmakers continue in this vain. With this in place, cult film will continue to flourish with talented individuals who are not seeking to win awards. One can only hope.
Images copyright AD Lane
Images Copyright Troma