on 24 May 2012
I was a fan of 'GreenLit', Nicola Lees' first book, so I admit I was eager to get my copy of "Give Me the Money and I'll Shoot!". Whenever I sat down in front of a blank screen to write a treatment, a pitch, or even just an influential email, 'GreenLit' was like a friendly companion at my desk. An easy-to-read guide with some of the best advice in the business.
"Give Me the Money and I'll Shoot!" has the same qualities I loved in "GreenLit": whatever page you turn to, you learn something useful, and there's evidence the author has talked to the relevant people in the industry. She's obviously asked them the right questions, and distilled the useful answers. For someone like me, who feels 'too busy' to commit to reading a whole book on funding before I start the process, this is GREAT, because you can dip into sections where and when you need guidance. Today, it's crowd funding: BANG, there's 15 pages about it.. It's written in a conversational style that keeps you going, and always backed up with a quote from an important source, or a hard fact that assures you you're in safe hands. And web links at the end of every chapter! I think it's a gift to the modern day filmmaker, from someone who has the experience to guide you through difficult territory. A must-have, 5 star book.
on 17 May 2013
I had high expectations for `Give Me the Money and I'll Shoot' after reading Nicola's first book, `Greenlit', and wasn't disappointed.
It's written in the same direct but reader-friendly style, keeping what could become dry information interesting by using relevant case studies and insightful quotes from industry experts but without any `fluff'. Clearly Nicola understands the time-pressures filmmakers are under and so only includes what is absolutely necessary and useful.
The range and level of contributors interviewed for the book is again very impressive, from award-winning filmmakers to broadcast commissioners, crowd-funding experts to festival programmers. These are all people who are working in the industry today (as Nicola is) and who therefore provide up-to-date knowledge and recommendations.
The book is broken down into 3 clear sections (1. The Idea, 2. The Funding, and 3. The Reality), with those then broken down into distinct chapters (eg. Part 2 is broken down by funding source), making it very easy to dip in and out of relevant sections depending on what project you have and what stage it's at.
I read the whole thing in about a week and find myself referring back to it often. Whether you're just starting out and want to get a general overview of the funding landscape or you're an experienced producer looking for insights from the industry's top decision-makers, this book is a must-read.