Coming to an agreement with a distributor is not a difficulty in itself. What’s more difficult is to get the distributor to sign a contract in which there is a commitment to making a significant contribution to film production and promotion! We’re talking here about several hundred thousand euros. We prefer to wait for the campaign to finish to be able to begin negotiations with the backing of a dynamic and motivated community. Our objective: to gain greater freedom and more resources.
Why don’t the producers put up all the money?
A producer’s job is not to provide all the funding, but to find it. That’s not always easy, especially for documentaries. Our production company, Cinextra Productions, brings together authors and directors who seek to work on projects in complete independence. Therefore we don’t have the means to finance a general-release movie ourselves. We need to cooperate with a larger production company to access funds and contracts with TV channels.
How did you fix the cost of your documentary?
The budget for a documentary mainly depends on shooting conditions (city, sea, desert, rainforest, etc.) and therefore its theme. For example, the 2015 documentary
“ Amazonia”, cost 12.69 million Euros, whereas the movie “To be and to Have” filmed in a primary school in the Auvergne countryside cost 1 million. The quote for “Food transition” is for €900,000, although we will need to travel across France and the United States - two countries where transport, accommodation and employment costs are high. We have kept our budget to a strict minimum.
Will you be able to finish the movie if funding falls short of your target?
There are two possible outcomes. If our crowdfunding campaign is successful, we’ll have no difficulty in completing our financing plan. Your massive support will be a decisive argument to convince distributors, TV channels, and overseas co-producers.
If, on the other hand, our campaign falls short of what we had hoped for, we will need to find other funding sources. We could look at sponsorship, provided that the organisations shared the movie’s spirit and ethics. Of course, we would by far prefer popular support which would enable us to work in complete independence!
If the film is successful, what will you do with the profits?
Any extra profits will be invested in creating a web platform to exchange information and advice on the transition of our food model. There is a lot of existing web content, but very few free and user-friendly platforms where all the relevant information can be accessed in one place.
What measures have you taken to limit the carbon impact of filming?
In France we will travel by train or electric car. To cross the Atlantic we will take the plane, but we have arranged to offset carbon with the “Co2 Solidaire” organization to ensure that the carbon impact of movie-related travel is kept to a minimum.
Isn’t this just another movie on the same subject?
We’re not aiming to make just another movie, but a landmark film. Because wherever we go, we come to the same conclusion. There are huge, urgent, societal expectations with regard to the food we eat and the future of our whole agricultural system. Especially as we are often taken in by popular misconceptions and misleading advertizing messages. People feel a bit lost. We believe it’s essential to bring together in one movie the answers to all our questions and highlight existing solutions that are sustainable and accessible.