Christine W Chen - July 13, 2023

Lessons from an Indie Filmmaker:
 Finding Investors is Like Dating

Have you ever been frustrated by the difficulty of finding investors for your project? Do you feel like you're playing a game of cat and mouse, where everyone wants to sleep with you but nobody wants a committed relationship? If so, you're not alone. As a filmmaker, I've learned that finding investors is a lot like dating.

Be Authentic: Honesty and Truthfulness are Key

At first, it may seem exciting and full of promise. You pitch your project to potential investors, and they seem interested. You start to think that this could be the one, the person who will help you bring your vision to life. But then, when it comes time to commit, they hesitate. They want to see what other people are doing first, or they're not sure about the numbers. You start to feel like you're back at square one, wondering if you'll ever find the right match.

The frustration of this process can be overwhelming, especially when you know your project inside and out. As a filmmaker, I've spent years learning the ins and outs of a film set, and I'm not afraid to talk truthfully about what it takes to make a movie. But sometimes, that knowledge can be a disadvantage. People who know less than me, or who are willing to lie, can sometimes raise money more easily than someone who knows everything about the process. It's a tough pill to swallow, but it's the reality of the industry.

However, I've also learned that there are some similarities between finding investors and finding a romantic partner that can be helpful to keep in mind. Just like in dating, it's important to be authentic and honest about who you are and what you're looking for. If you try to oversell your project or yourself, it may work in the short term, but it's not sustainable. Eventually, the truth will come out, and you'll be back at square one.

Don't Settle: Take Your Time to Find the Right Match

Another lesson I've learned is that it's important to be patient and not settle for less than you deserve. Just like in dating, it's tempting to take the first offer that comes along, especially when you're feeling desperate or unsure. But if you do that, you may end up with an investor who isn't a good match for your project or your vision. It's better to take your time, do your research, and find an investor who shares your values and your goals.

Building Relationships is Key: Get to Know the Person Before Committing

Finally, I've learned that building relationships is key. Just like in dating, it's important to get to know the person before you commit. You want to make sure that you're on the same page and that you have a good working relationship. This takes time and effort, but it's worth it in the end. If you can find an investor who believes in you and your project, and who is willing to commit to a long-term relationship, you'll be able to create something truly special together.

Overall, finding investors is a lot like dating. It can be frustrating, overwhelming, and sometimes discouraging. But if you keep these lessons in mind - be authentic, be patient, and build relationships - you'll be able to find the right match for your project. And when you do, it will be a beautiful thing.

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Blog inspired by topics covered in Season 2 Episode 37

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Article credit: Christine W Chen (https://www.christinewchen.com/blog/2023/7/13/lessons-from-an-indie-filmmaker-finding-investors-is-like-dating)

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