21. Making It Right
The job of being a producer is never over. Depending upon what kind of distribution deal that you are successful in securing, the money that your film generates through the various windows and markets could take years to come in. That means you have to stay on top of things and be diligent to be sure you get every cent coming to you. Don’t count on your distributor to do your job. Bottom Line—make sure you’re getting paid.
Whether or not you get a distribution deal or pay check, your responsibility is to “make it right” for the people who helped you make your movie. The first place to start is with your investors. Remember, you didn’t promise or guarantee them that your film will be successful. At least I hope you didn’t. Filmmaking is a high risk business, and there is no guarantee of a return. But, to the best of your abilities and with the money you have made, you need to pay back your investors, hopefully, with interest and profit. They are first in line.
And, if you also do right with your investors, they will more than likely want to hear about your next film project. After all, if you made money for them, why wouldn’t they want to talk to you? As a producer and filmmaker, your word must be everything. Integrity, honesty, and not making promises that you cannot deliver are all part of making it right. And, if you are a Christian in the filmmaking business, believe me; people will be watching your behavior and actions. You have an opportunity to be a witness for Christ in how you conduct your business deals. So, by all means, you have a moral obligation to make it right with all persons concerned.