Advice To Low Budget Filmmakers (Don’t Call Yourself That) by Jason Satterlund

Film Courage: Labeling one’s self a “low budget filmmaker indie filmmaker,” how can filmmakers hurt themselves with trying to stay so frugal? How do they end up sabotaging themselves? I know they have a limited budget. It’s not that they are trying to stay in this realm, it’s just how things are dictated at the moment with their financial circumstances, investors, crowdfunding, credit cards, whatever. How does this sabotage their production?

Jason Satterlund, Writer/Director: I don’t like to label myself like that. I know some people who do. I think that’s such a weird thing to label yourself if that’s what you’re going to do I’m a low-budget filmmaker. Why not choose I’m the guy who makes people ask questions about food. You know what I mean? I feel like that would be a healthier way to frame it as opposed to low-budget. That’s a strange way to…because it’s sort of a downer, it’s a down place to start.

I think the trap that a lot of people fall into when they start to label it low-budget X they start to…I made a motto of myself years ago that I never wanted to work on a film that was just a…I used to call it Just a…oh this is just a slasher. What that’s doing is you’re automatically lowering your expectations.

Look this is just a corporate video. Let’s not break ourselves… Well, can’t we do better? I think that’s the mistake when there is no budget…(Watch the video interview on Youtube here).


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SAWGRASS on Youtube by Jack Peterson. Jack is an American filmmaker based in Chicago. He’s been featured in the New York Times, the Daily Beast, and ABC News for his work as an activist. His first feature film, Sawgrass, is a psychedelic journey through Florida, featuring an extensive interview with the brother of the Las Vegas shooter. Sawgrass also features a performance by the Rock-afire Explosion, a vintage animatronic band created by famed inventor Aaron Fechter. Jack’s next feature film, My Perfect Everything, tells the story of a magician chasing an imaginary woman he met in 1989. My Perfect Everything is currently in the early stages of pre-production.