Film Courage: Those early businesses [which Mark started]…pager business, dry cleaning, etc. What did those teach you about filmmaking?
Mark Harris, Filmmaker of Black and Privileged, Why Men Cheat, Black Coffee, Black Butterfly: So the thing is with filmmakers, a lot of us want to be artists and a lot of us don’t want to deal with the business aspect (which is cool if you don’t, but you have to). If you depend on other people to depend on the business aspect, you will always be broke.
We have to understand business, we have to understand marketing because we have to apply those things, not just be artists.
If you look at some of the most successful filmmakers from Tyler Perry to George Lucas to Steven Spielberg, they’re not only great filmmakers but they are also great businessmen. So as a businessman I took that same energy, those same laws and I just transferred those laws and that energy and that hustle to the film business so I knew when I went out…again…I’m going to use my first film as an example…even the first film that I made everything was shot in wide shots but I knew I wasn’t going to give up. I didn’t say Okay I’m not going to put it out. I didn’t say I don’t want to edit it. I was like Go ahead and put it together and what I did was just like when I went out with the briefcase with the pagers [his earlier pager business where he hit the streets selling his product], I got copies of the DVDs made and I went out and hustled those DVDs and was going door-to-door. I was hitting the streets of Chicago [Mark was born and raised in Englewood, Illinois], it was going to different clubs, and using that same energy and those same laws, transforming those over to the movie business…(Watch the video interview on Youtube here).
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