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Blockbuster Lighting for Your Low Budget Film

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Lighting for film is critical, not only for exposure but also to create a mood that best tells your story. In low-budget filmmaking, you may not be able to afford all the fancy lighting tools out there—a basic Arri kit can cost you close to $2,000 to purchase. So how do you go about lighting your small […]

Screenwriting on a Budget

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A good script is the foundation of a good film. If you’re still scribbling notes and snippets of dialogue on Starbucks napkins because you’re afraid to shell out for proper screenwriting software, I can assure you there’s a better way. While the defacto screenwriting software is Final Draft, it’s currently going for $249. That can be a […]

Why Your Film Didn’t Get into Any Festivals

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Despite a low indy budget, it’s possible to make films that get picked up by festivals (the ones that aren’t run by your friends) and that get word-of-mouth (other than your own social media). So, why didn’t your film get into any festivals or get any buzz? Why did the programming panel reject your film […]

Recording Amazing Audio for Your Low Budget Short Film

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You’ve written an incredible screenplay. Your actors brought the characters to life in unexpected ways. Your cinematographer captured the image through breathtaking compositions and lighting. There is only one hitch— Sound. Dialogue is garbled, wind and background noise obscures the vocals, levels are all over the place—your masterpiece is ruined. Here are some tips that […]

How To Guide on Visually Outlining Your Story

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In my artistic process, procrastination has always reigned supreme. I am the writer that mulls over her ideas for many moons before bothering to put pen to paper. I often wander aimlessly about the Internet looking for creative ways to break myself of this habit, but as any indie filmmaker worth their mettle knows, magic bullets aren’t […]

Creativity Happens in Pre-production.

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I have been active in Scary for two years both on other crews as well as producing and directing my own film Behind The Cow. I am looking for productions that will facilitate my goal to learn how the pros really do things and why. So I look for projects run professionally to set examples […]

San Francisco Indie Film Co-op Presents Festival Featuring Top Local Filmmakers at the Castro Theatre

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Scary Cow Productions, the San Francisco Bay Area filmmaker cooperative, commemorates its fifth year by hosting the Prime Cuts Indie Film Festival—a one-night only special movie screening at the Castro Theatre. “The 5th Anniversary of the Scary Cow Indie Film Festival is proof of Scary Cow’s dedication to growing and supporting the independent film community […]

Four Essential Elements of Directing

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 The Director’s job is insane.  Let’s face it, you have to be a little bit insane to even attempt it, and when you look at the list of things for which a Director is responsible you could easily talk yourself out of trying.  The following is a list of four things to focus on as […]

No Free Lunch (the care and feeding of a happy crew)

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I have been with Scary Cow for a year and prior to that I led and worked with many volunteer groups for a variety of projects and fundraising. I have developed some strong and highly successful attitudes and tactics for building volunteer teams and for assessing what team leader is a good one for me […]

Wanted: a few good Production Assistants

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Maybe you’re new to filmmaking.  Maybe you don’t know which aspect to explore first.  Maybe you’re dying to get involved, but are embarrassed because you don’t know the first thing about making a movie. Can you walk and talk?  If the answer is yes, we’re not only willing to have you on our crew, we […]