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I responded to an email from Andy that came through yesterday. He said that The Film Distillery staff had their first day of discussion about how to make Contained. There was also some points about raising the crew, and special effects teams that are in the running to work on the film.
It’s all starting to feel very real.
The last point was that we should name the date and time that we intend to come up to Canberra and he’ll make time to meet with us.
Looks like we’ll be able to go up there on the weekend of the 13th and 14th, but I told him that we’d confirm closer to those dates.
Later, Andy called me. He said that he was keen to work together to build the MOU, as opposed to him just drafting and forwarding it himself. This was great news for me, as it mirrored the experiences I’ve had in my work life when these docs have been created. He promised to share the budget with me as soon as he could, as well as any quotes that land re the special effects, and that any help we could provide with department heads would be most welcome – but there would be caveats regarding suitable prospects to satisfy Screen ACT requirements. We then spoke about the possibility of me assisting with raising private investment for the film. I wanted to know if there was room for me to do that, given how comprehensive his finance plan was, and if there was – how that would work.
Get this, Dear Reader. Andy said that any assistance in that area would be most welcome, and that he would absolutely ensure that the constitution for the SPV of the film would reflect an increase in share ownership for us relative to however much we were able to raise.
I could barely believe my ears. The deal structure that Andy has set up for participants of Accelerator is incredible. It basically provides all of the difficult and costly things a production needs – Producer Rebate certification, accounting and administration, all legals, a Guarantor for chrissakes – so the story creators can focus on… creating the story. That alone is close to unbelievable, but to then consider that they would concede share ownership to reflect any private investment I bring to the table for a finance plan that doesn’t require it is just amazing.
Before we rang off, Andy mentioned that we are looking at the possibility of a component of the shoot taking place at studios in NSW or QLD, depending on availability and cost. I had assumed that it would just be in Canberra, but it makes sense because of the shooting tanks that they have at Sydney and the Gold Coast, and that there are parts of the story where the set will be fully submerged. We’ll see what happens.
Great phone call!