Edited ESPN docu with FCP and a macbook

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by TaKashMoney, Jan 18, 2011.

  1. TaKashMoney macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2005
    #1
    Hey guys,

    Im a 23 year old filmmaker and a huge mac user, who has been on this forum for few years now. Our film, A Fighting Chance, premiered on ESPN in november and was edited entirely on two macbooks (one white macbook and one macbook pro) and FCP. We are releasing the DVD today and just wanted to be available to answer any questions any aspiring filmmakers may have about the workflow/process/indie film market in general. One of the reasons I felt I was even able to make the film in the first place was because of the friendly and informative community here. Feel free to ask away.

    -T
     
  2. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #2
    Congratulations on having it picked up by ESPN. I remember seeing a trailer for it a long time ago.

    How did it end up on ESPN? Was that an initial target from the beginning or were they just one of the places you shopped it around to?


    Lethal
     
  3. mwilloam macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2010
    #3
    That guy is amazing ... absolutely amazing. Looks like a great piece and well shot and edited. What camera did you guys shoot it on? 24p?
     
  4. FroColin macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2008
    #4
    That is just awesome. You didn't need the latest Mac Pro etc. You did it on two macbooks. That's really cool. Yeah the biggest question is how did it get picked up by ESPN? How long did it take? What was it shot on? But generally how did the distribution go, same questions that Lethal asked
     
  5. bigbossbmb macrumors 68000

    bigbossbmb

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2004
    Location:
    Pasadena/Hollywood
  6. TaKashMoney thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2005
    #6
    We started making this almost right after we graduated Undergrad. I had gotten some scholarship money and in my final semester, instead of using the money to study abroad, I chose to buy a camera. The camera I purchased was a Canon XHA1 (now discontinued I think, shoots 24p HDV). My good friend received a similar scholarship and was able to buy a MBP and Final Cut.

    We pooled together what little money we had, and were able to buy tapes, harddrives, a wireless mic, and a few other odds and ends (like china balls or a diffusion screen). Then we just started filming, practically living at Kyle's house everyday for nearly a year and a half. Kyle had been one of my best friends growing up and he agreed to let us film him as he was trying to get his fight. My parents agreed to let me move back home and make this movie.

    We initially started to find investors to raise capitol. That failed horribly for a few reasons. First- we had no experience and were a couple of 21 year olds trying to figure things out as we were going. Second- we had no connections. Third- The economy was just about to have its bottom fall out (in the fall of 2008).

    Our plan was just like everyone else's, to try to submit to a big festival, get in, and hope for distribution. If that didnt happen, we were going to try to scrap enough money together to print DVDs and hope we can sell DVDs to recoup our costs. ESPN was nowhere on our radar, and we were certainly not on theirs.

    Fast forward a year and a half, and we now have a rough cut of the film (ended up cutting about 13 different versions). Kyle and I were visiting DC (he was giving a motivational speech to high schoolers suffering from physical and mental disabilities) and we ran into a businessman who knew Kyle. We told him about our film and he introduced us to a colleague that he knew. We luckily got a meeting with this colleague, showed him the film, and he was blown away by Kyle and his story. He jumped on board and was able to get us meetings with HBO and ESPN. We flew to New York, pitched the film, and luckily ESPN agreed to purchase the TV rights.

    Unbelievably lucky.
     
  7. FroColin macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2008
  8. matteusclement macrumors 65816

    matteusclement

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2008
    Location:
    victoria
    #8
    wow

    as a guy who is just on the brink about to make his first short film, your story about how you went about this is amazing. thank you for sharing.
     
  9. jnash macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2007
    Location:
    Michigan
    #9
    wow man this is an amazing story and so is yours! I really dont have questions I guess but its really awesome to see you sticking to your roots!
     
  10. puckhead193 macrumors G3

    puckhead193

    Joined:
    May 25, 2004
    Location:
    NY
    #10
    wow! awesome story. So whats next for you guys?
     
  11. TaKashMoney thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2005
    #11
    Well, more time than I had anticipated is being spent right now handling a lot of the business aspects. We will be selling DVDs, trying to book free screenings, and working with a few non-profits to try and benefit the wounded soldiers coming back from battle. Kyle has done a lot of physical therapy with guys missing limbs, and we want some of the film's proceeds to benefit them as well.

    As far as other projects, the co-director of the film has moved back to his hometown of Nashville. He is working on a screenplay.

    I got hired for a growing film company in Atlanta as a writer/director. I will be making short films over the course of this year, while I write a feature screenplay of my own. I decided to forego a film grad program I got accepted to because of this opportunity. Hopefully, with some of the contacts A Fighting Chance has opened up, I'll be able to raise some money to shoot the feature in 2014.
     
  12. Pomeless macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2010
    #12
    It's been a couple years ago now since I first heard of Kyle. His book No Excuses caught my eye and I was inspired. I didn't know that he went on to attempt MMA. I have to see the movie now!! Thanks for applying your passion and skill to his story.
     
  13. bigbossbmb macrumors 68000

    bigbossbmb

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2004
    Location:
    Pasadena/Hollywood
    #13
    good call, you're already light years ahead of everyone in that program ;)
     
  14. CaptainChunk macrumors 68020

    CaptainChunk

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    #14
    As you should. I know many with postgraduate film degrees that haven't gotten nearly as far in their careers as you have. No film school can prepare you for what's really out there...seriously.

    Congratulations and good luck to you in the future!
     
  15. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #15
    Did ESPN buy the movie in a 'rough' state and do the finishing themselves (color correction, audio mixing, etc.,) or did you guys do the finishing yourselves?

    W/the incentives Georgia just rolled out Atlanta is turning into a hot town for production work.


    Lethal
     
  16. pigbat macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2005
    #16
    Looks like a great film. Nice job getting it distributed.
     
  17. TaKashMoney thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2005
    #17
    We did all the finishing ourselves, or technically we hired out to a great posthouse in Atlanta. We delivered to ESPN in finished form on HDCAM- pretty standard from what I have heard.

    And we are definitely seeing the positive effects of Georgia's aggressive tax incentives. More and more big shows are coming to film in the state and I'm excited to be in a film market thats actually growing.

    Lethal- I read all the time about your helful and informative posts on this forum. What kind of work do you do?
     
  18. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #18
    My current day job is primarily online editing a weekly show on cable and workflow development/management. On the side I've been editing a documentary for years that is now down to the 'legal phase' (copyright attorney making sure all of our usages rights are in order) and I usually pick up random projects here and there too. For example, next week I'm grading an indie comedy feature and I just finished up a promo for a game show the producers are shopping around. I've done a bit of everything though, cable puller, camera work, dub room, vault manager, assistant editor, etc.,.


    Lethal
     

Share This Page