Making an Impact

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Former GM of Transmission Films Courtney Botfield has managed distribution campaigns for titles including Balibo, Boy, The King’s Speech and Samson & Delilah. Now, with longtime screen industry publicist, Tracey Mair, she’s created distribution and marketing agency Goodship, with a focus on establishing strategic philanthropic and brand partnerships to support productions. At this year’s Big Screen Symposium, she presented on impact producing.

When Simon Mark-Brown, producer of digital media company, Kontent, and producer/director/writer of yet to be released indie title The Catch, presented his finished film to the New Zealand Film Commission, he said, “I’ve financed, shot and edited it. Now what do I do?”

He wasn’t going to wait for anyone to tell him that he couldn’t make his film so he funded it himself. Now, his efforts have turned to international distribution and the NZFC are proving very helpful.

While Mark-Brown’s initiative and drive is enviable, he gives all filmmakers an opportunity to reflect on the priority they place on what is possibly the most overlooked aspect of the filmmaking process.

The NZFC is currently working with him to find the best way to market the film overseas.

Botfield wouldn’t normally recommend waiting until a production was ready to go out into the world before getting stuck into the marketing and exploring any partnership opportunities that might exist. In her masterclass on impact producing at the Big Screen Symposium, she shared examples of films that had been able to partner with corporate sponsors to support and leverage the films’ social messages.

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