Fate, Destiny, Luck and the Cult Classic
I am going to get off the modest tree for a moment.
I just re-watched the cult classic Dark Star. John Carpenter´s and Dan O´Bannon´s
famous first commercial film. It was a student film that got funding to create a
feature length movie.
After having watched it again, I realized that even my first movie is in the same
league. If you get a chance to watch the new Blu-ray release of Dark Star and
watch the documentary about the making-of, you would see what I mean. At least
if you have also seen my movie Shadow Beings. Actually, mine has a better script,
at least in dialogue. But the rest of the production is not much different.
Fact: Dark Star cost $55,000 and about 3.5 years to make.
Fact: Shadow Beings cost $2000 and about 1 year to make.
I think with the cost of using film, that $55,000 was probably equivalent to $2000
using digital. Just a guess. :) And possibly add in the fact that I did not have the
benefit of film school. A lot of doors can be opened and opportunities presented
via film school.
The trick, is to get your movie in front of as many people as you can or it will not
get watched. Generate the sub-culture for the movie. If you have enough viewers,
it can become a hit by statistics. Marketing it correctly would of course help
Do not get me wrong. Dark Star is one of my most favorite movies. It was one of
my inspirations as a young lad to make movies. It has a certain organic quality that
only low-budget creative movie makers can accomplish. Sure, some polishing may
be in order here or there, but the movie has held up for over 30 years. I think it is
because of that certain organic quality. Even if some of it is cheesy, dodgy
or low-budgety, the overall movie and story is what counts. Especially if you are a
sci-fi fan or an independent film enthusiast.
Perhaps, if my movie and John Carpenter s are similar in low-budget-ness, then his
movie was a success because he had more determination? An ego might have
helped me out in that respect. :)