- 3% go to the movies once a week
- 5% two to three times a month
- 13% once a month
- 49% almost never
Do You Know Who would Buy a Ticket to see your movie?
- Would you pay to go and see the movie?
- do you know someone else who would pay to see it?
- would you rent it online or would you purchase it outright?
- OR would you wait until it was on your Netflix or Amazon subscription site … or Free TV?
- There are ‘four quadrant’ movies – they appeal to all cinema-going audiences i.e. male / female; those under and over 25 years old e.g. most ‘tent pole’ studio films aim at the four quadrant audience – their budgets are so big they have to appeal to all in order to break even!
- However, if you’re not making a big budget, family feature it is unlikely that your movie is aiming for that whole audience.
- Knowing who your audience is means understanding the potential for the movie in the marketplace – from the large to small screen.
- Prospective investors, sellers & buyers will make a judgement on the audience appeal – so that they can place a value on their investment in the film.
- The biggest cinema going audience is aged 18-25 …. however, that’s partly because most movies aim at that audience (hmm why would you go to the movies if you’re 50+ and have outgrown fighting robots ….).
- However, there is a 50+ ‘silver dollar’ cinema goer – they have disposable income; they want to leave the house; they like the cinema experience – piracy isn’t in their DNA and nor is waiting for the next release of Grand Theft Auto ….
- The under served female audience – again, they won’t go to movies aimed at men – but neither do they stay home & play video games … so make movies that appeal to the demographic.
- Genre specific audiences – action; drama; horror; arthouse; romcom – does your movie sit squarely in a genre?
When developing your screenplay, keep asking yourself:
- Who is my audience, who is most likely to part with hard earned dollars to see this film?
- Ask people you know in the demographic – pitch the movie & see how they respond
- Is there a film that compares with your project – if so, research who went to see that movie.
- The audience wants to leave the house – give them a good reason to do so; be clear about what your movie is.
The Business of Film
Ultimately, we are in a commercial industry – we create a product for a consumer.
To stay in the business you need to keep an eye on returning investments to the backers – thus, the more realistic you can be about what the film is and who it’s for – the better the odds of making it at the right price & paying back the investor.
Happy investors will return to filmmakers who are collaborative and made best efforts for all to ‘win’.