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How to Become an Indy Mogul with Ted Sim
Today on the show we have host, filmmaker, entrepreneur, and president of Aputure Ted Sim. Ted is the host of the Indy Mogul Podcast and Youtube Channel. He took over the reins of the legendary Indy Mogul Youtube channel last year and has really created some amazing content.
Ted Sim is a Los Angeles filmmaker, originally from Baltimore, MD. Though he has been living in California since 2009, he has traveled to over 45 different countries for work and to meet with local filmmakers from all around the world. He is an alumnus of UCLA’s Film Program and is passionate about education.
In 2014, Ted started working as President of Aputure USA. Aputure is a cinema technology company that designs and manufactures high-end lighting solutions and filmmaking equipment for digital creators. Ted and I talk shop, lighting, and making it in the film business. I love Aputure lights so much that I exclusively used them in the making on my last feature film On the Corner of Ego and Desire.
I had a ball talking shop with Ted. This episode is going to be fun. Enjoy!
LINKS AND RESOURCES MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE
- DONATE to Feed America to help with people affected by Coronavirus
- Indy Mogul – Official Site
- Indy Mogul – Podcast
- Indy Mogul – Youtube
- $1 Closed Captions for Indie Filmmakers – Rev ($10 Off Your First Order)
- The Complete Indie Film Producing Workshop with Suzanne Lyons (COUPON CODE: IFHFILMPRODUCE)
- Rise of the Filmtrepreneur®: How to Turn Your Indie Film into a Moneymaking Business (FREE AUDIOBOOK)
- Shooting for the Mob (Based on the Incredible True Filmmaking Story) (FREE AUDIOBOOK)
REAL-WORLD STREAMING FILM EDUCATION
- Indie Film Hustle TV (Streaming Real-World Film Education)
- Hollywood Film School: Filmmaking & TV Directing Masterclass
- Filmmaker in a Box – Learn How to Make an Indie Film – 18 Hours+ of Lessons
- Storytelling Blueprint: Hero’s Two Journeys
- The Dialogue Series: 38 hours of Lessons from Top Hollywood Screenwriters
WATCH THE FILMS
- IFH Academy – Exclusive Filmmaking & Screenwriting Training
- Indie Film Hustle® Podcast
- Bulletproof Screenwriting® Podcast
- Filmtrepreneur™ Podcast
- FreeFilmBook.com (Download Your FREE Filmmaking Audio Book)
Alex Ferrari 2:37
Now guys today on the show, we had Ted Sim from Indy Mogul and from Aperture Lighting. I've been wanting to get Ted on the show for quite some time. And we finally were able to coincide our schedules to make this happen. I've been a fan of Ted's and what he's doing at aperture for a long time, I actually use almost exclusively aperture lights when I was making on the corner of ego and desire. And I just love what he's doing with not only aperture, but now that he's part of the Indy Mogul family and was able to bring Indy Mogul kind of back to life on him and Griffin I was so so excited to sit down and talk shop with him and and see what's going on. Now this was recorded pre COVID-19 so that is why you will not hear anything in regards to COVID-19 was recorded a little bit before the shutdown. But I think you're going to enjoy this episode. Without any further ado, please enjoy my conversation with Ted Sim. I'd like to welcome to the show Ted Sim. The legendary Ted. How you holdin up man?
Ted Sim 3:48
Doing good man doing good. Hanging out working on a bunch of stuff wasn't without any phone podcast, man. Here we go.
Alex Ferrari 3:55
Yeah, baby. I mean, this is like I was saying earlier I think is a longtime common man. It's It's uh, you know, I've been I've been a fan of yours for a while I've been a fan of what you've been doing with aperture and now with Indy Mogul. And all the service that you're doing for the film community in general man, because we're such a small group. There's not a lot of us doing what we do as far as trying to help the community and trying to be of service and all that stuff. And we all it's so funny if we don't know each other personally, we know somebody who knows each other. And it's kind of like, it kind of goes that way. So it's it's very, it's very, but I've been wanting to get you on the show. I had Griffin on the show a while ago, which was so much fun.
Ted Sim 4:32
And it's so much fun. Is he seriously just that you think he's a nice guy when you watch the videos when you meet him or talk to him in person or online. And then you're like, Oh my gosh, he's like 10 times nicer than I ever thought he could be.
Alex Ferrari 4:44
Is he like, is he like Canadian? Nice.
Ted Sim 4:49
Really good question. I don't know how to answer that. But I will say I'm certainly nice. So however you define
Alex Ferrari 4:56
Canadian, Canadian nice is like so nice. It's like, I still remember the first time I went to Canada and the first time I ever went there and everyone was so nice. I swear I was like in a horror movie, like they're gonna kill me. This is way too nice. I don't understand
Ted Sim 5:11
Where you're coming from Los Angeles to Los Angeles. You couldn't ask for a more like, culture shock. horribly mean spirited people. community to come from?
Alex Ferrari 5:24
What do you mean sir la? What? How dare you, sir? Oh, Sandra, this is where all the friendly people are. Yeah, but they but LA is the nicest. They give you the nice efuse the nicest efuse ever. Like I've never it's an art form here. Just then they'll never you'll never hear the word. No. Never, ever. It's just we're passing. That drives me crazy. Just like you go to New York, dude, your stuff sucks. And I'm not going to do it. That's like what you hear in New York.
Ted Sim 5:56
I just I just don't I know it's true. I just don't want to admit that it's true, because I hope that it'll change someday. I'm from Baltimore originally, by the way. So I'm used to the same thing you get on the bus and the bus drivers, you know, to drop an F bomb in there and be like, Are you fucking coming on the bus and you leave in the bus? I'm like, No, you.
Alex Ferrari 6:13
Let's, let's move it along. kind of thing with the bus. All right. So before we get started, man, how did you get into the film business in the first place?
Ted Sim 6:23
That was a great question. Yes, I grew up in Baltimore. So basically, in Baltimore, if you tell people you want to make movies or working, basically like saying you want to be an astronaut, it's like, honestly, I think saying you want to be an astronaut is actually a more reasonable job, because there's the Goddard Space Center and all this stuff out there. And like there's actual NASA employees walking around. So it's not really the most plausible thing to tell people. But you know, I want to work in the film industry because I grew up and I love movies. And I think I fell into the trap that most filmmakers fall into, which is Oh, my gosh, watching movies is so fun. I wonder how much fun it must be to make a movie.
Alex Ferrari 7:05
Must be easy. It must be easy. I've seen the behind the scenes. It shouldn't be that difficult. Of course. Yeah. I mean, everyone's just having fun. You're eating snacks. So there's, there's trailers, there's sushi. There's lobster tail, I mean, yeah.
Ted Sim 7:17
So you fall for that. And, you know, you get into it, you start making movies. And since I was a kid, since like middle school, I was like trying to, you know, play with my own cameras and stuff like that. In high school, I actually got a job as a projectionist assistant, where I was actually, my grades were terrible in high school, but I would go to the local theater every day, and I'd work as the assistant over there. And eventually, I made the jump to go to film school came out to when I found out that film schools actually care about more than just your film experience, which, you know, sounds it No, it doesn't sound obvious, it was something I needed to learn. I buckled down and went to Maryland, studied my butt off and then eventually got the grades got into UCLA, did my film program there and then suffered the I think the thing that I'm sure a lot of listeners can say that they suffered from which is the post film school blues of feeling elite, and you feel like you're the best and you worked really hard to get into this program and you come out and people literally want you to like claim and shoot
Alex Ferrari 8:18
So you see you mean reality. You're talking about reality on reality TV? No, no, no, that's that's life. You mean life hitting you smacking you upside the head? And going No, no, no, you're not as cool as you think you are. Yes, we all
Ted Sim 8:38
The worst feeling in the world? Does anyone listening to this that feels like they're in that place in their life? I'm not gonna say that. It doesn't get worse than that. But I'm gonna say that that is a low point. And it's normal to be in a low point there and that's okay.
Alex Ferrari 8:52
Yeah, it isn't. It is a normal place out of I mean, out of film school. I was. I started working at Universal Studios, Florida, doing pa where I was in pa work. I was a translator for global guts, the Nickelodeon show. And then I just realized a while that's like, this sucks. This is not what I was told that I was gonna make 100 million dollar movies. This is this is you know, my last name should be Spielberg. I don't understand. To me who likes me so looking around, I can tell you who lied to you the one that you're paying that bill to every month to pay back your student loan. That's the one
Ted Sim 9:30
Your driving the hot thing now Alex in terms of you know, obviously the film school versus no film school debate. It's a hot topic, right? Yes. I gotta be honest, like when I when I first got out and for probably 10 years afterwards, I thought for sure. No film school, right because I was like the golden boy in film school to like I graduated like top of my class. I like a director spotlight all this stuff, and they came out and just no They write crickets. But I think it takes a certain amount of time to see the people around you grow up and become because I think when you first graduate, you look around, you look at your friends, and you're like, Man, I'm an idiot. And all of these people that I graduated with are idiots, like, what network are they talking about. And what you don't realize is that it's not an idiot. So it's not that you're an idiot, it's just that it takes time for everyone to grow into the thing that they become. And you know, now everyone that I looked to now is, you know, producing something, or shooting something and writing something. And it's a great feeling, because it's like seeds, right? I got to grow up into something someday. So now, I don't really know, I'm kind of torn on the homeschool thing. I do believe that if you're really motivated and dedicated, you can learn everything that you've learned in film, school plus more online, you can learn it from other people, you can learn it just by doing it. If you take that money and make a movie, you can do it. I feel the same way about business, but or a certain person out there that, you know, can't make that jump or doesn't have that self drive. I don't think it's a bad move anymore. I've flipped on that.
Alex Ferrari 11:05
But arguably, arguably speaking, though, if you don't have the drive to go to the self, educate yourself, do you think you're gonna have the drive to make it in this business? That's a really good question. That's a really good. I mean, if you're like, I don't want to like have to do work to learn. I need someone to tell me what to do. Because that's the way businesses Yeah, that's, there's going to be someone holding your hand through this entire process, especially indie film. Oh, absolutely.
Ted Sim 11:30
It's a nightmare. Right? Like, again, I'm speaking to people mostly that are in the States, right? Because, you know, you got publicly funded Arts in like Germany. Sure. And like a lot of places. Sure, that's a different thing. And I there's there's downsides to that. And there's upsides to that. But if you're doing indie film in the States, or any place that doesn't have publicly funded arts, man, it is. ain't easy.
Alex Ferrari 11:52
It ain't easy in this world. Alright, so you get out, you realize that the world sucks, and they lied to you. And now you're in this dark depressive place. Where do you go from there, sir?
Ted Sim 12:03
Okay, so I get lucky, actually. So I started. I just I just start on our operating I just I got a camera, I start shooting things that shoot every day, man, I shoot bad weddings, I see horrible commercials for people down the street. I started taking on just little gigs here and there. I find my way eventually out to a set until I started doing a kind of a spiff in terms of working in reality documentary. And this is back when I think, you know, Shark Week was I don't know if it's still as big as it was back then. But sure, it was a big. Yeah, still a big deal. I got him because originally from Baltimore, in silver spring over Maryland, discovery channels out there. So I had a couple friends that were from the Discovery Channel people and I met some people on set. I'm interested started working as the like go to guy for the Shark Week people. And I was the guy that was known as. And really this is because I was just some kid out of film school, I was known as the guy that could do it for really cheap. It would be okay, not that great. But I could get it done quickly. And for a budget that everyone else would be like hell no, we're not doing that. Eventually, the guys that I started working for were the company that would get contracted out to do Shark Week, they'd get contracted to do these kind of like big discovery gigs here and there. But, you know, just like any Freelancer or entrepreneur, company owner knows, you get reached out to from time to time with lowball gigs, right? And they used to just say no to those gigs, and they would just start throwing them to me. And I was the guy that was like, oh, you'll pay me the whole camera. Hell yeah. And shoot anything, I would work anything in matter. Yeah. Um, I did that for a while until eventually, I got I got lucky. Those group of guys actually reached out to me, after a couple years of doing videos, and I think what they were noticing is the same thing that I think everyone could say it's still happening now is that the budgets for all these projects were going down. And they felt like they needed to bring on someone that you know, was scrappy, that could do kind of a lower budget projects, but they got there often. So they actually ended up bringing me on as their c string director, which I didn't know what that was until the time but there's a director there's a B director and a C string directly. It's like legal firms right? Like when you hire like a law firm or something you go after the first person the name whose person is on the legal firm, but then they don't actually work on it they pass it to their B person that the person doesn't want to work on it the president is the person right? Well, that was me doing educational videos for McDonald's and doing you know I would do like the how to set up your car BMW videos and stuff like that.
Alex Ferrari 14:36
It paid it paid something
Ted Sim 14:38
they paid. And you know what I was I was really lucky because I think I got paid to direct really early on which is something that I think a lot of people
Alex Ferrari 14:45
Oh, that's awesome. I mean yeah, look, I would have killed to direct I was I was editing. So basically what you were doing a camera I was doing in post. So that's why my IMDb is like 100 credit long and that's not even including the idea of just post a name including commercials music videos. All this other crap that I did, and I did anything for Yeah, any if it walked in the door I did it.
Ted Sim 15:07
Were you an editor or were you like an editing assistant on scoping for a long time. And he was like, man, just glad
Alex Ferrari 15:15
No i did editing I did. I was an assistant for like a minute. And then I went off and start freelance editing commercials and music videos and things like that. Then slowly I got into feature editing. Then after that I got into color grading, after that I did online editorial, and then and then post production supervision, then VFX. So I started just adding more tools in the toolbox. Because if I couldn't get paid to edit, I could color if I'm not getting paid to color I could do post supervisor, and then package it all together.
Ted Sim 15:43
Dude, I think post is the smartest way to get it. Maybe the grass is always greener. But I legitimately believe that editing, if you want to, if you want to write or direct or any of that stuff, like let's be real, most people want to write and direct, right? If you want to do either of those things, I really think post is the way to enter because that's when you assembly, this is gonna sound like belittling a bunch of jobs that again, I'm coming from a very camera heavy cinematography world. So please, if you're hearing it from anyone, please read for me. Almost everything is like building the blocks, or someone to edit, right? They're like making a bunch of Legos. At the end of the day, someone's got to put the story together. That's the editor. So if you want to write and direct, I don't think that there's any better practice in the world than post.
Alex Ferrari 16:26
Oh, I would agree with you. 100% It helps me so when I started directing commercials and directing TV, all that kind of stuff it I can move so much quicker than anybody else. I mean, I was doing 100 110 120 setups a day. Just why and because I just knew what I needed. I didn't have to wait to like, oh, we're just gonna take that whole shot. I'm like, No, no, stop right there. I'm gonna cut there. Let's move on here. Yeah. And it just, it works. So so much better. And, and not that I'm a bit older than you. But so you know, I there, I didn't have the ability to learn editing at home, I had to do I had to drive an hour get there early work on the avid, stay late,
Ted Sim 17:06
that says I don't care, even if it was slower, even if it was harder, just learning how to assemble something. Yes. And just know and be that close to the finished product. I think it's priceless man, because everything else is just so vague and ephemeral. And you don't know what's important. Until you see it in the Edit.
Alex Ferrari 17:20
Absolutely. So then, so I wanted to ask you, man, you're obviously, you know, the first time I, you know, discovered you was through aperture. And that company, and you're the president of aperture. And for people who don't know what aperture is, it's a lighting company, a very cool lighting company. How did you get involved with that company? And and, you know, how did you jump from, you know, doing really bad wedding videos, to the president of aperture?
Ted Sim 17:49
That's a really good question. That's a really good question. So in between that, obviously, I had my stamp kind of doing the directing for that production company, which, which that was, that was good, that was fun. I would basically get asked to bid on a job. probably somewhere between 15 to 20 times a year, I would put bids in and realistically, I'd probably undergone a good year. And when I don't know what, six to seven on a bad year, I'd only win like three or four gigs out of that. And they were like pretty big gigs. I can spend my time and shoot that I can live off that for a while. At a certain point, things start to slow down. So I decided, oh, man, I need to find other work outside of just this being wrapped up this company. It's they're not giving me enough work right now. So I can't say the name of the people. But I went off and I eventually ended up becoming a channel manager for jumbo YouTube star and I'm talking like early, early YouTube.
Alex Ferrari 18:39
What year are we talking about? What years are we talking about? I don't want to say okay, okay. It's early. Look, it's only been around for like 1012 years. So it's not,
Ted Sim 18:47
You know, someone's gonna piece it together, I ended up working for a really early YouTube star. Which is why I say it too, because I wasn't really happy with a lot of the work that I was doing, but it was paying. It was regular. This is like the gold rush of YouTube. Money was coming in.
Alex Ferrari 19:04
And you could then you could still cheat. You could still cheat to get your stuff up on the on the on the front page.
Ted Sim 19:08
I actually To be honest, I wasn't doing a lot. I was basically managing the production schedule and make sure that the videos will come out on time.
Alex Ferrari 19:16
I actually had the rocket jump guys on and they told me their techniques what they did back in the day, you could just you could just do steel thing to tweak it and you were on the front page. That's why they have 9 million subscribers.
Ted Sim 19:27
Yes. Yeah. Yeah. And you know what that stuff is life changing. I still think that way about most new film technology that comes out if you're the first one to get there and break it before it is too hard to break. Do you reap the rewards on those guys? I see you working working on YouTube. So doing YouTube channel managing for a big guy out there. Eventually. I'm not happy with the work I'm doing there. I'm kind of getting this sort of I'm getting the the trickle of commercial dealings. I'm not really happy with a lot of it and I get reached out to By this person who is the he's one of my mentors, but his wife's brother reaches out to me and says, Hey, I have this gear company. We're doing really well in like Asia, and we're doing really well in Europe. But I don't really know why we're not selling anywhere else. And I want to hire someone in the states to come help out with that. My buddy Travis is my the guy that recommended me for the gig was like he says, it'd be a really good job for this. What do you think it'll pay? It's a regular gig. And I was like, fine, I will take full time regular work. I'm not really sure at the time I go, and I meet this guy. And this guy is, you know, the government found it becomes a very good friend of mine now. And he's he's amazing mentor, but I meet this guy in this warehouse. 30 miles east of Los Angeles, and I sit down, and I swear, it looks straight out of like a like a James Bond movie or something like lights, or Damn, I'm sitting in empty warehouse. There's like two chairs, and we're looking at each other. And we just talk, right? That's, to be honest, as soon as I walked in, like my first thing that I'm thinking is like, I need to get out of here. This is not a good situation like this is clearly not legitimate. Why did my mentor like recommend me for this thing, but we started talking about equipment. And, you know, this isn't that long ago, this is 2013, or something like that. And this is just after the DSLR booms happened, right? DSLR boom, happens. Everyone's shooting movies, all of a sudden, cameras are affordable. Oh, my gosh. And we talk about this thing. And the big thing that he brings up is talks about how he thinks that cameras have gotten affordable. Now, filmmaking and accessories are also going to need to get more affordable now because all of a sudden, the only people making movies are not just studios and Hollywood filmmakers is the first time that independent artists are coming in for the first time that businesses do make video. And we talked about it for a while. And at first I'm kind of I'm kind of dubious. I'm like, No, like gear is expensive, because it needs to be expensive. And like, he asked me to bring some of my gear. And I brought you know, I don't mind saying that's actually I brought I brought this red rock handle, but I like screwed up camera. Remember that handle right? Here. Remember, it was like, it was like a 300
Alex Ferrari 22:12
it's expensive as hell hell.
Ted Sim 22:14
And it used to be like the cheap option, right. And like, I was really tapped in on the gear, I was like hearing her. And so like, I did all the research, I was like, Oh my gosh, like, this shoulder rig is only 18 $100. And like, you know, he's looking at it. He's like, you know, like that's to buy candles and like some PVC like, do you really think that's worth 18 $100? Right? And you got to start thinking, don't get me wrong, I get all the people out there that say buy nice buy twice, right? Like, I'm one of those people too, right? But when you have a nice industry that all of a sudden becomes blown up. And the people that are providing for that industry aren't pricing it for a lot of people that are just pricing it for studios, like Disney comes over to you and says how much is a light? Yeah, dude. ftu your Disney 10 grand a light, right? Yeah. But the whole thing that he said was he was like, I think that there's going to be this change that's going to happen someday. I don't have a lot of experience in the film industry. But I'm looking for someone that is a shooter that understands filmmaking, that knows what the interview process looks like. And can actually just try to push this stuff, right. I didn't go to business school. I didn't do any of this. We had an off and eventually I ended up saying, Yeah, I think this is a Okay, I'll do this. And in the back of my head, I'm thinking like, okay, maybe I'll do this for like six months or something. I'll do this for six months, I'll put a notice I'll leave and you know, it's winter. summer comes around the gigs always rolling in summer, I'll just do something like that. Say yes to the job and make a Facebook page, Twitter page and make LinkedIn make does all the little things right. And it's fun to say that now because now those things are going up into something else. But make these pages and I just start posting it in the beginning, we have a $0 marketing budget. But the one thing that I think is okay, you know, what did I learn from all my days on YouTube? In fact, it wasn't even that conscious. It was just like, Oh, well, if I have this stuff, and I looked at it, and I tried it, and I was like this is good. And I don't see why people don't like it. Why don't I just start reaching out to people here and there. I start reaching out to not say that I was doing this now I probably would have reached out to you, Alex and Hollywood reached out to me, I would have reached out to derrius I would have reached out to anyone that has some kind of following online. And I just said Hey, I'll send you this thing. If you don't like it, that's fine. If you do like it, consider saying something about it. And you know now I say this and everyone's like Well, that's the most obvious influencer marketing crap ever. But you gotta remember this was a different time nobody was doing and what we found is that we were the only people that were doing that. So all of a sudden you've got all these YouTubers and online people being like, Oh my gosh, like, you're reaching out to me for this day and you want to send me like a $600 light like, that's like oh my gosh, like yes. Like, let me look at this and To be fair, the Bureau is pretty good but I think a lot of it was also that nobody was reaching out at the time nobody was taking them seriously. No one's taking please here's someone who's taking the online filmmaking community seriously. And I think even today we're still starting to see the online filmmaking get taken more seriously. It's blown up a lot. It's changed like crazy, right? Like we live in a day and era now where you know canon pays like a quarter mil to like someone like the top like crazy. Again, not not me, but like does like crazy something that was his name.
Alex Ferrari 25:29
Peter up what's his name? Peter something or other guy. And I okay, the big guys. I'd have no idea Peter cannon or something like that. Yeah.
Ted Sim 25:40
Yeah, I know that all those are huge. Now. It's, it's crazy to me, which is insane. But nobody was taking them seriously at the time. Because of that, we ended up just meeting these people talking to these people. And to be honest, it was kind of radio silence for a while. nav rolls around two months before nav actually put it on notice to quit. I say, Hey, you know, I've been here for 10 months, which is longer than I expected to be there for like maybe a month or something. Eight months, I've been there for longer than I had planned to be there for and I said, Hey, you know, I had a lot of fun. Thank you for the opportunity. I appreciate being here. I still believe in the mission stuff that you're working on. But look, I'm looking at this Facebook page, and nothing's really moving. I'm looking at see two pages, nothing's really moving. And what happens is, all of a sudden, we go to nav one year. And the craziest thing happens. We're like this tiny 10 by 10 booth back in Asia corner, right? Like all the other cheap Asian brands, and where we're there and the weirdest thing happens day one, which is everybody from the internet just shows up at our booth. Like everybody you could ever think from the internet shows up to our booth, right? Like, like, I'm like mkbhd walks by at some point. It's so busy and packed and rupees online people that all of a sudden, all these fans of the online people see these online people there. So then random people are now at our 10 by 10. It's this swarm of people I think I did something like like 60 to 70 interviews per day. Because every time I saw an interview, like three other people would see it and be like, why is this company so high? I need to go shoot a thing now.
Alex Ferrari 27:14
Dude, I got to stop you when I was doing research on you. And when I typed you in all I would see you is doing any videos like that's all the other than the 1000s of videos you've done yourself. I would just see interview after interview of NBA MVP like Dude, this guy sleep.
Ted Sim 27:30
Now, so this became but now it's like a tradition or something. Right? It's like go to na P and interview Ted, which is I think it's very flattering and great. And it's a good thing for the company to but at the time it was we were just so shocked, right? Like we had like five people there. Maybe we're like overwhelmed by people. Like I think Shaq came by at some point. Like Shaq comes to nav ever he mean you mean Shaq Shaq Johnson or the real guy? I'm absolutely joking with you, sir. Yeah, Shaq comes by and you know, they like the booth is just so busy that he ends up walking by and people come to this crazy thing where at the end you know, one of the bigger gear companies out there actually asks like, Hey, would you be interested in sitting down to talk business? And the big question all of a sudden becomes one is aperture going to remain aperture by itself as an independent thing or two. And the second question when we all sat down and talked about this was he telling you still leaving and I was like it is supposed to be my last day I was kind of just going to show up and put in my time and be out but now you're like the face of aperture? Is they love me how life works and let me just say to there's like a lot of people that work in aperture that work super hard Yeah, I get credit i get i get way more credit than I deserve on this stuff. Really admins just because yeah, I can't say this enough. Seriously, there's there's so many people here that work super hard. So I do want to be clear that for the most part people think I'm like some like black magic wizard or something. We're just making products now that's not the case. We have a team of engineers that work So
Alex Ferrari 29:15
You mean you're not the one in the back actually designing and building it from from from scratch yourself, sir. That's
Ted Sim 29:21
And even the videos have like a team of people that help us make the video me
Alex Ferrari 29:24
You don't do all those videos by yourself and edit.
Ted Sim 29:27
This is what people think they want this feeling of some person doing something. It's absolutely not true. Anyways, a sub against the epic saga that has become aperture. That's awesome. A lot of changes have happened since then the teams grown like crazy, but we're now at a point now that you know, like Disney bought a whole bunch of lights, which is crazy.
Alex Ferrari 29:49
Did you try them? dollars? Did you charge them 10,000 ?
Ted Sim 29:51
No absolutely not. In fact, they sat down they were like, well, what's the Disney price and I was like, there is no Disney price because like you gotta realize that we sell or Average Joe Schmo filmmakers, right. Like I talked to hear companies that are like, we feel bad when normal people buy our products because normal people aren't supposed to buy our products, right? Like, I would feel bad if you charge some guy down the street 10 to $14,000 for some of these lights, I'm like, This is crazy.
Alex Ferrari 30:15
Now with today's technology, not I mean, before I would get it because there was an LED technology that it actually did cost a lot to produce a professional cinema. Light, you know, and I mean, I worked at those lights, I've used those lights, they're beasts, and they last forever. We'll be right back after a word from our sponsor. And now back to the show.
Ted Sim 30:45
Yes, I think it's also that when you make them for a small quantity of people, then yeah, you can do that. Yeah, the same reason why like, you know, diving gear.
Alex Ferrari 30:54
Well, that's why an Alexa, look at it, Alexa, Alexa is $125,000. For for that's not for everybody. And, arguably, unless you're having ASC at the end of your name, it really doesn't matter as much when there's so many other options that can get you a really pretty picture that most people out there will never notice.
Ted Sim 31:15
And I've done me wrong. There are there are, you know, there are real differences between the expensive Absolutely. But if you aren't, I would urge most people to do a little more research because look, what is it when you look at the camera that shot Superman Returns? Oh, the Genesis? Yeah, it was some
Alex Ferrari 31:38
it was but it was like it was like a it was kind of almost a Frankenstein between a Sony and a Panis and a pan of vision. And it was a beast, it was a monster, I saw that camera it like the workflow was just built for 5000 post guys to work, it was just not a friendly candy. Only
Ted Sim 31:54
thing I just want to say and like this is not to castrate on people that use the super expensive stuff, because it's okay to use what you're paying for share what you're paying. But there's so many people out there that they see price equals quality. And it's just not true. A lot of the time. In fact, if I'm being honest with you, perception equals quality. So it's like, just be wary of marketing Be wary of because it does. And when I say marketing, I don't mean just like some Superbowl ad, right. Like I see this every time I watch a Superbowl ad, the first thing I think is Oh, if I buy that product, I'm paying for that Superbowl ad
Alex Ferrari 32:33
Ted Sim 32:35
Right, like, I can't buy it, I can't, it's really hard for me to buy a mophie cuz I'm like, Damn, mophie just bought like three Superbowl ads. I'm like, I just wanted a phone charger, I didn't want to pay for it. Likewise, I feel that way. The other type of marketing is where you stand back. And you just price things really high. And you just say we're the best. And this is the price they're paying. And that perception is something that some curse on the show. Some asshole is sitting there thinking that it's just like me at some company that's trying to market stuff and sell stuff to somebody sitting there and thinking by standing back, and by being aloof. And by pricing things Hi, this is how we'll get you to feel like it's worth more. And this is what you do to feel like it's royalty. And I have heard people say that I did in conversations about this stuff. And I just I want indie filmmakers to know, I think they already know this too. But know that one, it's not really the gear, it's the artists but to if you're going to spend the money know what you're actually spending the money. Wine purchases.
Alex Ferrari 33:44
I mean, we were talking a little bit before we got on air about my movie on the corner of ego and desire. And that movie, if you want to talk about quality versus investment, I purchased a 1080 p pocket camera, shot the entire movie on it. I blew it up to 2k and projected it at the Chinese Theater. And nobody believed that I shot it on a little camera the size of my iPhone was shot at raw, but I also knew what I could do with it and post because I have post experience I had those tools in my toolbox just like you know what you could do with certain cameras and certain lenses because that's your that's your toolbox. So I knew what I would get out of it. It's not like I just grabbed an iPhone and shot a movie. I'm like, oh, look how cool. But it's it's a perception where people were like, if I would have led with that people were like, Oh, this is gonna look like crap. And then when I saw projected for the first time I'm like, Oh my god, this is probably one of the prettiest things I've ever shot in my entire life. It was just stunning for the story. I was telling him if this is the Avengers
Ted Sim 34:43
That you know that's not going to fit right it's not it's not gonna fit. A lot of what you're paying for is you're paying for one is like intentional liability, which is that like this thing will last forever and it's built like a tank and it's never going to break too is that you're also asking for like certain ergonomic things of like I just needed to certain features that appear in any filmmaker, you might never use those features. Right? Right. Like DMX is an easy one, right? Like lighting boards and stuff like that. If you need that feature, you need that feature, and most high end shows need that feature. But if you're an indie filmmaker, you're not going to be bringing a light board onto your sets away.
Alex Ferrari 35:17
Unless, unless you're extremely pretentious. Hey, listen, let's I said that Ted didn't say that. If you're an indie filmmaker with a $10,000. Movie, you bust out a lightboard that you've got to evaluate your, your priority, sir or ma'am.
Ted Sim 35:34
There are there are plenty of plenty of talented people that can make it do unless maybe you're using different technology. But yeah, I completely agree. Yeah, I think. So now we're in this weird place where and I would say that the past two and a half years of aperture have been marked by this, right? We've been doing this for seven, eight years now. The past two and a half years in particular have been the indie community loves us. And we've kind of we really, like we came from the bottom zero. There's people that come to the top, if you're looking for the boat, we came from the bottom, we're going up. And we're now at the point that this is the first time I've ever heard this in my life that the low end is like aperture where you go in your gear is becoming too expensive and high end, which is mind blowing for me. But people from the high end are now saying, after stop playing with the kids, we like what you're doing, make it for us. And we're in this weird situation where we're in the middle and nobody's ever happy. And I will say that the high end and the low end of filmmaking they hate each other. It's
Alex Ferrari 36:36
no, there's it's it's two camps. I mean, like, Yeah, when you say you made a movie for five or 10 grand people look at you weird. They're like, how is that even humanly possible? And then in there you How dare you make cinema for that little bit of money? And then there's the high end Guys, look, I'm best friends with some ASC guys who look at what I do sometimes. And they just look at me like, I don't understand. I don't I don't understand. I don't get it. I don't why did you do this?
Ted Sim 37:03
It's, there's there's so much value in both of them. Yes. Yes. There's so much value in both of them. And they're both right. It's just what's the same either,
Alex Ferrari 37:13
But what's the name of each? Yeah, what's the end game of each? Yeah, good. Look, if you're if you if you're making $100 million movie, there's a there's a way to make that movie. If you're making a $10,000 movie. There's a movie. Yeah, that's this. That's better than I could ever say if you did just the so it is so people. But sometimes when you get the problem is and I love this, and I'm sure you've come across this. And so when you get the indie filmmaker, with the indie mentality and an indie film set, and then they get access to a high end dp who's working on a show who's got, you know, a genie budget that's, it's seen, and he can't even understand how he could do anything with less than an Alexa. And, and and what's an avenue, you know, 120 or something like that, that costs $110,000. He can't work without that tool set, because that is what he's used to doing. Where I'm used to just like, get a cool lens, get a cool camera, let's make it happen. And but I've also worked on higher end shows that the budgets, I'm not going to do that on a half a million dollar million dollar show. That's that's that appropriate for that?
Ted Sim 38:21
Yes. And that right there. What you said is what I wish I could tell everybody in terms of there's there's a high end of the low end, and for some reason they hate each other. And I wish I could just tell people on the low end, because it boils down to this, right, like the low end thinks that there's no reason to spend that much money on the high end. I know, I sounded like I was talking before to budget. Yes, you can achieve amazing results with affordable interior, you can do that. But I just want to tell the low end people, there is a really important reason for why people spend so much money on the high end. And that's because everything else costs a lot of money. That's because the details really matter. You're paying for the diminishing return, right? And you really need to pay for that. And those tools are incredible. But it costs a lot of money to really utilize them. Right, but
Alex Ferrari 39:07
you can't like you know, Chapo can't. You want Chavo to have the best paints, the best paintbrush the best canvas to do what he does, you know, or any of these high investor needs masterful tools. He knows the greatest tools, he needs the best. So I want him to have a 65 Alexa, I want him to have, you know, giant cranes that block off, you know, he's flagging off the sun. I want him to do that because that's what a master of his statute deserves to work with. And I'm not saying that he's better or worse than anybody else, but he is a master at what he does. So he you can't do what he does in the films that he does. With you know, with a $10,000 kit, it's just not but now on the other end, if you're making
Ted Sim 39:56
if I tell the high end, the low end is amazing and They can do incredible things for such little money. Please respect that.
Alex Ferrari 40:03
Exactly. And I think it's just like how that happens looking down like How dare you The bottom line is like up looking up and going. I screw you, you elite bastards.
Ted Sim 40:12
Yeah, you guys spend money frivolously you don't realize what you're spending money on. That's not true. The high end knows exactly why they're spending the money that they spent. And there's a precise reason for it.
Alex Ferrari 40:21
And it makes it it makes financial sense because the projects they're working on are by the time they're on set that conversations already be had. It's already been pre sold. They already know how much money they're gonna make. If they're spending $150 million. I promise you unless your cats you're going to make your money. shots. Oh, come on. My best. My favorite my favorite. To eat on cats. I've yet to see the movie. I'm dying to see the movie. I can't wait to see it. Because what happens once in a lifetime, you get once maybe twice in a lifetime of film my cats. Cats is the worst thing to happen to catch since dogs. Cool, good. Just the best review of that movie. Cats is the worst thing to happen to cats and dogs. I just thought that was amazing. So anyway, we've gone off track. Okay, so I'm glad we got into this talk about gear because there is this whole gear porn subculture in the in the filmmaking space. And I've talked a little bit I've had episodes about, stop it with the gear porn, it doesn't matter. I don't care what your cameras I don't care how much you spent. All I care about is the story. And I think and please let me know what you think. And you can deny, you could say you don't want to answer this. But I feel a lot of times that filmmakers use gear as an excuse not to do what they're saying they're supposed to do. Like for me, it took me 20 years to do my first feature, because I kept saying, well, I need this to make that feature film, I need this camera, I need these resources. I can't get out of bed for less than a million, I have to make this movie for a million. I just can't do so then you start using the gear you're like, Oh, well, I need to read this, or I need the Alexa or I need this lens or I need that. And it's an excuse. It's just an excuse to not have to actually get up on plate and take a swing. Would you agree on that?
Ted Sim 42:22
I completely agree to that. And let me the irony of this is, you know, run a frickin gear company. Like, are you Why
Alex Ferrari 42:31
would you want an affordable gear company, at least
Ted Sim 42:33
people can know. But let me just say people livelihood because now we're in a place that people say like aptitude is like the gold standard. For a lot of people out there, right. So let me just say our livelihood depends on people loving and liking and gear and needing gear. You don't. If you're an indie filmmaker out there, people use gear as procrastination, the same way that I see people want to try to make their own studios or buy their own studio, I'm just like the body that has nothing to do with the thing you want to make. You want to make that thing go make that thing, don't do a step a, that leads to a step B, step a that you don't like, with the chance, the off chance that it might lead to a B that you'd like to just do the B start off there start off with the thing that you want to do, just setting out to do. That being said, for the high end people right again, like seriously, though, I understand why. And I understand the results that you're better capable if you geek out about gear, and it's amazing. But for 99.9% of people out there, people just these gears are going to procrastinate. And to research something that research in the best use of our time research is research is code for procrastination most I did a ton of that got
Alex Ferrari 43:43
so much so much. That's why I knew what that red rock handle was because I did I did research on I did. I did so much research,
Ted Sim 43:53
because everyone does what they say I want to I want to work in film, and you know, they sign up for an AI. I'm just as guilty of this as anybody else. Like it's fun to research. It's fun to feel like you're learning when you're not actually learning in the fastest way possible. It feels good, right? Like, and you know, I have people that reach out to me for mobile or reach out to their aperture. And I'm sure you probably get the same thing on indie film hustle. But, you know, I want to say thank you for supporting stuff and being a part of it. But also like, dude, go, go make something if that's your goal, like, like, there's
Alex Ferrari 44:22
a two year old light that you bought from us a couple years ago. It still works. You're good.
Ted Sim 44:28
It thought works. Go go make something like big don't chase your dreams don't chase talking about your dreams. You know, I have no horse in this race. I have no horse in this race. I literally benefit from the opposite. So no, no.
Alex Ferrari 44:42
And the bottom line is that because there's as you know, I know this might sound as a shocking statement, but there are a lot of talkers in our business, who just like to talk and hear their own voice and they don't actually go out and do it. So that's why when someone comes up and says hey, I'm gonna go make something and they actually do it. It is a Revelation, it is an absolute revelation like, oh, he actually gets get something that she gets something done, as opposed to talking about it for a year. We all know that. That writer has been working on that screenplay for five years now one screenplay for five years. We all know, look, I knew a guy who directed a short film. And it lasted for years in post, five years in post, because he just kept tweaking and moving and this and that, because he never, if he let go of it, he would have nothing else. And he knew that was the only thing he was gonna like, he felt like that was the only thing he was gonna get. So there's that, that and then they use gear they use, oh, I needed to be perfect or this and that. And all of a sudden you wake up and you're 70.
Ted Sim 45:39
And let me let me just say to like, I think part of mogul is. And again, he's these kids all the time to that we talk to high end, like the best ASC filmmakers out there every week. And when we talk, they tell us, every single one of them has some story about like, Oh, we didn't really have the tool we needed. So we had to just Jerry rigged this.
Alex Ferrari 45:58
Right? Absolutely. Absolutely funny has that
Ted Sim 46:01
story. So if that story exists on the top of the top highest end production, why are you using your lack of gear as an excuse to not get something done on the lower production?
Alex Ferrari 46:12
Every dp I've ever worked with has had some sort of magic rig, magic light, that cost $5. That gives us like the coolest strobe effect or something like that. When I had I had Russell Carpenter on the show a while ago, he's amazing. Russell is amazing for everyone who doesn't know Russell as he was the DP of Titanic and the new avatars and Ant Man and stuff. And you know, everyone was and I was going to get into to True Lies and Titanic but the first question I asked him, like, so critters too. How was that? He's like, wha no one's asked ever asked me about critters to have like, Oh, yes. We're gonna get to Titanic and True Lies and Batman and all the other ones. But critters too. How did you like that? Because I want to know how you Russell Carpenter Academy Award winning as a cinematographer. Yeah, lit critters, too. And it was just such a wonderful conversation. But I put it in the show notes, because I know people are gonna go, I want to listen to that. So it was a fun, fun conversation. But it's so true cinematographers. I mean, I've gotten I've worked with so many cinematographers over the course of my career, and they will just come up with like these homemade rigs. Like I remember, I'm not certain that's a circle, like what is called like a rim, a gremlin ring, like a ring. Like, before ring lights were ring lights, you know, there was the wooden built ring light with light bulbs built in. This is like going back into the 90s for like music, video style. I
Ted Sim 47:47
still know DPS that are using like strip lights that are just like, they basically look like makeup lights, but they bring them on. And do they bring them onto big sets. And literally like a Home Depot strip of deacons
Alex Ferrari 47:57
did and deacons did that for like blades.
Ted Sim 47:59
Yeah. All the time. Absolutely. Most, your your, you know, everything goes according to plan until it doesn't right. And like your job is to when it doesn't go according to plan. So, you know, stop freaking out. Just don't have the tools you feel like you need for things to go according to plan, start moving and getting ready and preparing and practicing to just let things get out of hand and figure it out. That's the job. And
Alex Ferrari 48:26
so we could keep talking about gear for about another 45 minutes but or four or five hours, but I wanted to get into Indy Mogul man, because when I heard you, you went over to Indy Mogul. I was like, well, this this I didn't see this coming.
Ted Sim 48:40
And a lot of people saw it coming. And people are happy. Who knows? Yeah.
Alex Ferrari 48:45
So I had Griffin on the show. And I asked him like, wow, to attend get involved. Like I didn't and he's like, he's like, No, I was great. He was great. He wanted to bring him in and it just all worked out and blah, blah, blah. I'm like, you know, Griffin is and like the sweetest like Canadian sweet. Canadian sweet. He's Canadian. Sweet. You could quote me on that. He's like super Canadians. But He's so nice because but so you so how did you get involved with Indy Mogul and explain to people who have not, God forbid have not heard of any mo because it is one of the original YouTube channels, teaching filmmaking on on the platform. So tell me how you got involved and how the whole story happened?
Ted Sim 49:24
Yeah, that's a great question. Um, so basically, we we've always been been in touch with the YouTube community. We've always been in touch with the online community of filmmakers. And back when any mobile had its first little comeback, they were talking about it and I reached out and just said, Hey, big fan of the channel. I watched the channel. I honestly watched the channel, way, way back when Watson reached out just to say, hey, as a fan, if you ever need anything, just let us know. I'll send him some lights. You don't have to do anything. I don't care. As long as you know you don't do anything with it. I'll send it to you. And we started talking and as we talked, once called Justin, the original founder actually reached out and Then, do you have were thinking about bringing in another host? Do you have anybody that you think would be a good recommendation, because you know, all the online people. So I made this long list of like, all the people that I thought were great. And again, it goes through this podcast, I'm sure you probably have seen a video from probably most of those people on a long list of all the people that I think are great. And here's the reasons why. and sent it. And it's kind of radio silence, right? I didn't really get a response. But I was like, man, I was, like, kind of rude. I like putting all this time and like, you know, I was trying to support some people. And eventually, like, a couple months passed, and, you know, like, a good idea kind of stops you. It's doxy, right? Like, you can't shake it, you know, you're you're, you're eating tornados that 4:30pm in the afternoon by yourself. And the idea comes back. And the idea was really simple. It's just, you know, what would happen if I just asked and said, You know, I am a huge fan of the show, I've loved it since the very beginning, I know all the hosts. This is a point in which to that apertured been doing we've been doing wedding content forever. And you know, a lot of people like the channel, but so many people have come up to me too, and said, Can you teach things that are just lighting? Can you bring in people or experts that can show us other things and doesn't really make sense for aperture and teach like Chrome piloting, or like, script writing doesn't make sense at all. So I was thinking, it was already kind of cooking that maybe we just started like a separate channel, or maybe it'll be like a 10 cent channel or something different. I gotta be honest, a lot of the motivation for that. And the motivation of the after channel in the first place was I, the longer I was here at aperture, the longer I was offset. And you know, the film industry, man, it changes so fast. Every day it changes. It's so hard to keep up with it. And like that's why it's great to have online education and things like this podcast will keep up. But I was feeling a little bit like all the tools that people were using on set were changing. So for me at aperture, people think it's just an educational thing. But guess what, it's also educational for me because I get to go I get to invite my favorite freakin VP in the world to come out. Teach us some things about lighting, and I am always in the know, and they brought me back on the set. And, you know, it's made everything that much better with mogul. Basically, I reached out and I said, Hey, like, what do you think about this idea? You know? And I reached out, they were like, well, like, you know, this was like a part of the reason, you ask a question like, hey, do you know of anyone, we're
Alex Ferrari 52:32
Just trying to be kind, as we want to take you to the prom. It was.
Ted Sim 52:38
It was great. It ended up being like this perfect fit. And we ended up talking to Eric and Justin about it. And they've been talking about how they wanted to see the show have new life. And I think for me, one of the biggest things that I was worried about was you know, I'm not like Eric who's like a practical effects genius, right? Like, I'm not like Zach Finn rock who is like a props master who can like make you anything, you can build you frickin district nine robot out of his out of Legos and spare parts, I can't do that stuff. So for me, it was, you know, what? What can I do? You know, I really like any mogul. And just like how Griffin kind of brought this DIY kind of documentary angle, what can I bring? I started thinking about it. And I think one of the best things of being a part of aperture. And we also have, we'll have daily microphones students here too, is that we've been in touch with some of the most amazing filmmakers ever. So like, you know, we go to the ASC awards every year. We know all the people that shoot all the big features every single year. And I know all the teams that work under them, too. And I think one of the biggest things for me was I had already talked before, but hey, maybe bringing on those teams to do like an avatar video, but it's too branded, right? It doesn't make sense. So the one thing that I could bring to mogul is I can bring this network of people that I know. And I'm gonna tell you right now, too, and I say this on the show, too, but I'm not. I'm not like a set expert. I'm not a lighting technician. I'm not those people know more than me. But what I can do is I can bring someone and if you ask me a question, how do you do this thing, I can bring someone that's an expert about it. And I will happily sit there with you and learn. Because that's my job. And I need to be in the know about that stuff. So lately mobile has been a lot about bringing in we brought out like beating Papa Michael, who's the head VP of acbp, performance Ferrari ram launch here, which is Joker. So it's just it's now it's become this amazing thing where it's half me geeking out and fanboying because I'm sitting next to my favorite makers of all time. It's amazing. It's half me learning and being able to keep in the know and like when I asked questions on that show. I'm genuinely asking like, how did you do this? geeking out. Honestly. I think all the questions I asked on that show are like real questions. Now I sit there and I get to ask my favorite filmmakers. How did you do the thing that you do? And
Alex Ferrari 54:52
I feel Yeah, that's exactly that's exactly what I do and how I've learned so much doing my show is when I asked when I asked a question I really want to know, like I had when I had Russell on? I'm like, so Titanic. Yeah. James Cameron, how was that?
Ted Sim 55:07
Yeah, absolutely. And I think a lot of people look at it like it's just this like marketing thing or like a money making scheme. And like I'll say right now, like, Marvel doesn't make it, we really don't make any money. All the money that we make goes to the editors that make the show. And honestly, the editors that make the show are amazing. And I'll say the names right now 20. Austin, are just amazing. And the reason that the show is able to exist, and that I'm still able to do avature is because those guys do the heavy lifting of making the episodes happen. I come I spend some time I learn, I get to talk, I get to meet filmmakers. And then I'm out honestly, and those guys put together the show and all the episodes that people watch and enjoy. And what that does is it gives me the time and the ability to still be a part of the actor, dt team still work together and still be able to keep a company together.
Alex Ferrari 55:53
So that's amazing dude, and you've been able to accomplish in such a short amount of time, dude is pretty amazing. I mean, you, you're definitely hustling out there, man. And like, and like, like I said, hustle, hustle recognizes hustle, man. So yeah, I got an a side note, I think I told you off air. But I want to say it on air, the only light that I used on when shooting on the corner view and desire was an aperture light. And the few times we use light, because we were all natural lighting mostly was one little LED light. And we just I bounced it off walls and stuff like that. And it was great. It was wonderful. It was wonderful.
Ted Sim 56:34
Dude, you gotta you gotta you gotta let me know about like, if there's anything in terms of feedback, or features or anything like that, that you need, cuz that's, that's literally that's how we make everything now is it's just people tell us a list of stuff that goes into a little list. And then that's what the engineers work on. They just work on that list of things. That's like people. That's the thing is that most people that make stuff, they're not actually on set. And I'm not like the engineers aren't on set, you know? So let's just ask the people that are on set to tell us what the heck they want. And then we'll make that thing.
Alex Ferrari 57:06
Stop it. Stop it. That just makes way too much sense. That makes sense, right? Like, oh, that would break the easy rule. So you don't want to do that. You don't want to break the easy rule. Now, dude, what is the biggest challenge you think facing filmmakers today?
Ted Sim 57:23
That's a crazy question. Got a slanted view of this stuff to be honest. Um, do you mean in terms of
Alex Ferrari 57:40
Just as a child like as a challenge on as filmmakers as the industry in general? Because, look, there's always challenges with gear, there's always challenges was finding money. There's always fun challenges of making money with a film like where do you think you feel that the biggest challenges because before in the 80s, and 90s, it was technology was arguably one of the bigger challenges because you could just make a movie and it was sold? It's done? Did you accomplish the 35 millimeter movie you no matter good or bad again, sold? Today, technology is not really an issue anymore. Especially with good companies like aperture and Blackmagic. And some other ones that are really affordable, high quality, make things high quality, high quality, super affordable, make a movie? Absolutely, absolutely you could. But in the general in the in the whole industry. I just love to hear your perspective on where you think the larger challenge is for filmmakers moving forward.
Ted Sim 58:37
Me, let me say it was not the problem first, and I think I'm moving around on circles. If you ask anyone on the high end, what's the problem of filmmaking, they're gonna say, the low end, they're gonna say that that dude down there is taking my gig and shooting it for way less, and he's taking no money or working for free or whatever the heck, he's ruining my industry, right? And I'm sure there's someone listening that feels that way. Of course, if you look on the low end, and you ask them, you know, what's the problem facing the industry? It's, Oh, those high end people won't give me a chance, even though I'm just as good as them and just as technical as I can make something that's just as good. I've heard both of these. I'm not gonna be honest. Neither is the problem here. The Times have just changed, man. I'm sorry that, yes, don't get me wrong. I'm sure that there's someone out there, if you're on the high end of the low end person has cut and taken your gig because some company found out Hey, I can pay a third of the price and get the commercial somewhere else I get this. But you also got to realize that we live in a time where the demand for content is higher than ever than it's ever been. And because of that there's more jobs and gigs and need for video and content, whether it's online digital commercials, and I know everyone hates making an Instagram ad and in the vertical form. I know that everybody hates that right. But those are real content, jobs. Those are real video gigs. That didn't exist before. And guess what most of the people that take those jobs are more And filmmakers, right. So the problem isn't each other. And I don't think the problem is that there's less jobs in the industry, there's more jobs than ever. I think if you're an independent filmmaker, and you want to do narrative, a problem is marketing. And the problem is making a film that actually provides value to somebody. Marketing isn't the same way that it used to be if you're looking for talking about industries that have changed, oh my god, filmmaking and marketing together, and things like crazy. Yeah.
Alex Ferrari 1:00:33
We'll be right back after a word from our sponsor. And now back to the show.
Ted Sim 1:00:43
If you're a filmmaker that doesn't know how to market your movie, or yourself for that matter, or yourself, for that matter, you're dead in the water. And I think a great example of that is, you know, I think this year peanut butter Falcon came up. Yeah. We talked about talking to dp and the team amazing, so good. And they shot it for like, next to nothing, man. It didn't get into Sundance, it went to South by Southwest instead. I know a lot of people are like, yeah, of course, it went to South by Southwest. There's so many films that go to South by Southwest and don't go anywhere.
Alex Ferrari 1:01:13
Ted Sim 1:01:16
Most folks go and don't go anywhere, right. I'm sure people are like, that's not the case. The problem is that the traditional ways that I've worked for marketing, which are, you know, festival term, or there's people that will make it with festivals, but they're not as potent as they used to be. It used to be like, you get into Sundance, that was your way. And it was it was actually
Alex Ferrari 1:01:34
The ticket wasn't to get it was it was a golden It was a golden ticket. You got into Sundance, you got your movie sold, you had a career period.
Ted Sim 1:01:40
And and it was possible to get into Sundance because it wasn't this like super corporate high end Hollywood thing that it is. Now I'm not saying that it's super, super corporate. But I'm saying that, you know, a list of movie stars are now in Sundance movies, which is that's strange, right? That's strange in some degree. So you can't look at all these traditional, can't look to a PR firm, because you probably don't have the money. If you're doing an indie film. You got to look at yourself in terms of social media, and how can I promote this movie, that's why I bring up a peanut butter Falcon example. Because, dude, I saw a ridiculous number of advertisements for peanut butter. I saw a ridiculous number of advertisements for parasite that I got targeted on Facebook and on Instagram. And I know friends that got targeted those as well, like a 24 is doing an amazing job for social media marketing. And I think there's someone out there thinking, Oh, that I have to hire a social media marketing firm. No, dude, learn how to do this learn, I guarantee that you can learn this. And you can probably do this better than a lot of the the older marketing people out there that don't even have a Facebook or don't even have an Instagram or if they do they don't know how to use it. I think it's social media is kind of the computer of our generation, right? It's the thing that gives you an edge over people that have way more experience than you are able to use it to promote your movie.
Alex Ferrari 1:02:52
I mean, if you look at every industry throughout time, especially in the industrial revolution, when electricity was coming around, and the light bulb was coming around, people were like, No, no, that's too dangerous. kerosene is the future. Because there was an entire kerosene industry ran by Rockefeller who owned the oil. And he was like, No, no, I don't want you to mess with my kerosene business. Or when trains came in versus horse and buggy, or when the car came in versus horse and buggy. There's always the old, the old, the old guard does not want to let go of the power and the the money that they have. And the new guard is Oh, the new technology, the new thing is always going to win. Always, always, always. I mean, from the the record the record industry. When the mp3 showed up, they fought and fought and fought and lost. When blockbuster saw Netflix, they fought and fought and fought and lost. And you know, and it just goes industry and industry and industry. And a lot of what we're talking about the massive changes that have happened in our industry. We're talking the last basically the last 15 to 20 years. Basically since basically 2000 it's been like every year, it's like exponentially changed. I mean, when I released my first film, my first short in 2005 YouTube had just launched. Yeah, so you know, and there was streaming was like, you couldn't get like MMR YouTube's quality was horrible and all of this stuff and
Ted Sim 1:04:26
And a lot of filmmakers that blew up from those early streams. You know, it was like
Alex Ferrari 1:04:32
Casey Neistat, Casey Neistat is the nice that he was he was the first one but I have to say because I was telling you, I was gonna tell you the story of how I should have control. Yes, I want to hear this. Okay, so in 2005 when YouTube was a year old, maybe it was before pre Google and I I created a DVD for my short film broken that had like 100 visual effects shots in and we shot it on DVD x 100 a panda Sonics it was it was pimp asik with with a wide angle adapter. So we had a nice oh yeah, the screw on wide angle adapter dude Oh yeah. Oh yeah, it was nice to camera in the in the days he was like please give me something that looks like a movie, it was 24 p were you kidding me was like the first 24 p camera not that canon XL crap like real 24 P. So we had two camera setup, then we had we edited on Final Cut four, five, something like that. And we did our visual effects and shake. And we had like 100 visual effects shots in it. And I put together a three and a half hour gorilla film school on how we did it. Because in the marketplace, there was nothing about how to make an indie film. Nothing. There was just no, I mean, you you had Robert Rodriguez is 10 out of 10 minute film schools, which is great, Robert, you're making seven $8 million movies, not helping me. So I wanted to I wanted to create product that could be you know, help filmmakers, independent filmmakers, even in 2005, I started and then I'll tell you why I left in a second. So I created this and I actually put up tutorials on YouTube, which are still on YouTube, you can go back and check them. And I would have kept going. And if I would have opened up a channel and I would have kept creating more of these tutorials on how to do it. I would have owned everything I would have been viewed. But then this is where this nasty thing called the ego shows up. And the ego said no, no, no, you are a filmmaker, you are not an educator. You're not a teacher, you're a filmmaker, why would you teach? Why would you want to teach? And then I went off and stopped doing it. And then it took me 10 years to come back to 2015. And I opened up indie film hustle. During those 10 years I would Can you imagine dude, can you imagine if I would have started making Sean merge, it would i would have would have owned everyone, it would be a complete loser conversation. But they are still up there. I got like five or six of those videos that are still up there in their little tutorials and how we did stuff and there was just nothing else up there. So that's how I that that's the one of the many close calls.
Ted Sim 1:07:15
I think, you know, at the end of the day, it always comes down to whatever the heck you're working on and take it really seriously. Dude, I can say the same thing about my time adapter. I didn't expect to be here this long, dude. You just don't know. You never know. And you got to put. You got to take everything seriously that you do. And believe me, I feel the same way about like it. But the one thing about is that it's never too late. That's another excuse that people say all the time. I missed my golden window. I know people that you know, that's a lot of the reason why people don't start channels or they don't start an Instagram.
Alex Ferrari 1:07:50
It's gonna take it's gonna take too long, it's gonna take too long. And they say, look, the same thing happened with me with indie film, hustle. I started in 2015. There was other podcast going on at the time. I mean, I'm not the first indie film podcast. Yeah. But I'm the most forever too late dude. I'm the most prolific. You know, I got almost 400 episodes of justice one podcast, because I just kept pounding it. And all of a sudden, by just as daily and weekly, pounding and grinding, all of a sudden you look back and go, Oh my god, I'm almost at 400. And you get it? Yeah. And then you have to start. You have to start like I turned, I woke up one day at 41, almost 41 to 40. And I said to myself, I have not made my feature film yet. And I can't do this anymore. I'm not 25 I got to go out and make it and 30 days later, I was shooting my first feature. Yeah, that that's simple, not because of like, Oh, I need this. I need that. No, we just got to go out and do it. And if it's good or bad, irrelevant, you learn you move on, you keep going. I would rather make 10 bad movies. Then wait 10 years to make one good one.
Ted Sim 1:08:57
You know what, because I'll learn more because it takes you 10 years to make every movie to you are not in business.
Alex Ferrari 1:09:02
You're Cooper. Cooper hilleberg is the only one that can make that work.
Ted Sim 1:09:07
And even Kubrick has practiced, he practiced it, you know, and he was able to do this. I you know, it's the same thing. My brother works at Amazon, and people are listening. And they're like, Amazon has to do with filmmaking, one of the number one rules at any tech company. And the reason I had to study this too is because I run I run a tech company is you have to throw out your first draft as quickly as possible, you have to get it done as quickly as possible. That is the hardest, most painful thing in the building in the world to do is to throw out this like half baked idea, especially with art because it's like some reflection of your soul. And I'm sure that if you're listening, you probably told a lot of people. I'm a filmmaker, I'm a filmmaker. I'm a filmmaker, which is why that when you show someone a movie that's bad, and you and they watch it, they're like, oh this is bad. But this person has been telling me his entire life that this is the thing he's born to do. I get that right that is horribly painful. It is painful. painful thing in the world, it's hard to say I'm born to be an actor and then be put on a bad performance. But at the same time, you're never gonna do anything unless you just start throwing stuff out there, man. And Amazon does this tech companies do this on all the throw out, you throw out a horrible Bad idea in the beginning. And then you reiterate. And the faster you can start reiterating, the faster you can start practicing, the better the result, I would say, model is doing the same thing to when we first started, we were like, We have no idea what this is gonna look like, let's just start making stuff. And then you start to realize, what can I do long term what actually makes sense? What, what is fun, what is enjoyable, where's that balance? Everything's about?
Alex Ferrari 1:10:38
I actually talked about it in, in my book about the 10,000. We all heard about the 10,000 hours that Malcolm Gladwell said horse, but but the argument was that there was a new thing, it's not 10,000 hours to learn one skill. It's a 10,000 experiments. So you have to keep doing it and doing it and do it because you learn more from trying and failing than you do from just just training to do the one thing again, and again and again. And example is Zuckerberg says that at any one time, there's 10,000 versions of Facebook going on every day, that they're the algorithm is constantly shifting, it's changing. They're trying new things. That's why Amazon's the same way. There's like, No, I mean, to get what Amazon has done and honed in, it's taken decades of just tightening and tweaking and every inch of that screen has been thought about it 10,000 times and we're you know, to the point where now you don't even think about it like you, I forget that I could buy something locally because it's so easy to buy it on Amazon you know, and I studied tech companies a lot because of their the new Rockefellers Carnegie's the or that they are the giants, the Titans are of this time, which is the information age. And then I've tried to bring as much of that information and knowledge to the film industry because there's a subgroup.
Ted Sim 1:12:02
Yeah. And because most filmmakers Don't even think about business. And unfortunately, this is a business it is and who is spending the most money on business? And what is the most efficient work process tech companies? So how are they doing it? Because there's some method to the madness. And the method is iterate as quickly as you can just start on things out there and I think it's harder in art than in tech because tech you can be like, Hey, we have this good prototype right? Take a look at this kind of sucks, but it'll be something someday, right? Yeah, a lot easier to do that than just someone your your bad writing and your bad movie, but I don't know any way around this.
Alex Ferrari 1:12:43
You know what to say? Look, look. I love the room. I think the room is one of the greatest films of all time. And maybe not for the reasons that Tommy was so thinks it was the greatest films of all times. But I personally think the room there's always something for somebody.
Ted Sim 1:12:59
How are you approaching this? Are you talking about like you love it in a way of like, he threw something out there as quickly as possible.
Alex Ferrari 1:13:05
And no, no, no, no. If you want to have this conversation about the room, I can have this conversation about the room because I love the room. And I'm not ashamed of it. I think I'm one of many millions of people who love the room. The reason I love the room so much is one Tommy was so is our modern day Ed Wood where there is so much passion and delusion in his filmmaking process that all he sees is his art form. It's not obviously an art form that anybody else saw because he was like literally having sex with someone's belly in the middle of a sexy there's you know, and multiple other millions of things that went on in the room that you know, we were shooting. Oh my goodness, I didn't I didn't when we were shooting. So when we're shooting on the corner of ego desire at Sundance, all of my crew and all of the actors had never seen the room. So one night we're like, you know, we're breaking I'm like Okay guys, we're watching the room so we go online and we we rent it and we start watching it and you can't watch the room by yourself you have to watch it with somebody else because if not it's just weird. I can't watch the room by myself I need another filmmaker I need somebody else to like you. Did you just see what I saw banter and chat and building and I would sit there and we were watching it and you just see people going Why is there why what's Why is it the same stock footage from San Francisco? What's going on? I'd like What is he talking to a dog what is like there's so why is your pictures of spoons What is happening? Like it's so bad. That has transcended good. Like there are movies that are just bad to be bad sake. Like I saw that documentary about the worst film ever made troll two which is an amazing documentary. And then I went to watch troll true. I can't troll to his horror I like it's so bad. It's just I felt a little bit of my soul die when I saw that film but the room here is so much passion and love behind the filmmaker that did it and I know people who worked on the crew by the way. Yeah, is as crazy as he is as As delusional as Tommy was when he was making it and it's stupid as the way the filmmaking process was, was shooting it on video on HD and on film, and all the craziness that happened, the passion of his vision spills off the screen in a way that you can't like it's not manufactured. It's not it's authentic. And that's what people are reacting to in the room is the authenticity of his insanity. is what people because we've all seen bad movies. We've all seen movies that are just so bad. You're like, I can't Why is this just bad? cinema? Why did someone waste time with this? When you see the room, there's just something magical about it that you just go in this can't be like that, because he's serious. Because if he was not serious about and he was inside the joke, it wouldn't work. But he really felt like he was making this. He really felt like he was making a masterpiece. And when everyone laughed at the the premiere, he was like, Oh, I meant to make a comedy. No, you didn't. But that's okay. And and look where it got him. Like, you know, he's blown up. And he's internationally still making millions of dollars a year off of this. This little movie that is horrible. But I loved it. And you're gonna and by the way, you're gonna see a cameo from someone from the room in on the corner of ego and desire. I'll leave it at that.
Ted Sim 1:16:20
Oh my gosh. You know, I, I will I will watch the room again, at some point, and I'll be sure to remember.
Alex Ferrari 1:16:35
You have to watch it with a friend. You got to watch it with friends. If there's alcohol. If there's alcohol in play, it's even better. Even better if you can watch it at Sundance even better. This these are the other things but um, it's so it just transcends like you watch it would you watch like pan nine from outer space you just go you there's there's so much love behind it. Like there's just so much insanity in mind. Okay, did you ever see Edward the movie? Tim burns movie, Edward. I don't think I have to do okay, you're okay. Okay. Your homework assignments. Ted. You need to obviously, watching Edward. Obviously watching myself on your watch. You're obviously watching my movie. But after you watch my movie, you've got to watch and would Tim Burton's and Edward any filmmaker? Yes, will cry in that movie, because you could just see the love ambition and the love and the insanity, the insanity of him and he has to wear his angora sweaters and like, and the carnival crew of people that he brought around him, like is like one of my favorite scenes in the movie, and you'll appreciate this. It's all shot in black and white. But he comes up at the the the the costume designer comes up and like what dress Do you want her to wear? Do you want to wear the red one? Or the blue one? And then Johnny Depp was playing it would goes, it gets a dp to come over and the DPS you know, some old really old dp. He goes, which one will work better in the movie? He's like, Oh, no, I'm colorblind.
The judge is like, well, they're right what it is all right, let's move on. Like he doesn't nothing stop nothing. Like he, like one of the actors bumps into the bumps into a wall, the whole damn, set shakes. And he's like, cut perfect print. Let's move on. And everyone's like, no, no. I mean, should we do another tech why that was perfect. He was so crazy. delusional. It's like you. There's certain human beings or certain artists that could do things like that. And they're once in a generation, I feel that Tommy was so is one of those guys. He can't do it again. Like it. He can't recreate that he can't make another movie. He's tried to make him be ridiculously Ernest, Ernest D. That makes it but he can't do that anymore. Because he understands what's going on. So he it's just never gonna happen to get that movie is such a unique snapshot in time. That will live with us, arguably, forever. It's, it is fascinating.
Ted Sim 1:19:02
I can see that in that in that view of art. I can see how that is a eternal Once in a Lifetime movie.
Alex Ferrari 1:19:09
Just you can't read. I couldn't remake that if I tried. Like if I want it to go out and make a movie badly enough. Because I would know the job possible. I would know the job was to software. It's not funny. It's Rebecca Black's Friday, right. Like, Ernest to be as funny as it is. Yeah, exactly. That's what makes it where we've gone completely off topic, but this is fine. I think everyone, I think everyone's enjoyed it. All right. I mean, we could keep talking for hours, brother. But let me ask you a few questions. I asked all of my guests. What advice would you give a filmmaker wanting to break into the business today?
Ted Sim 1:19:49
Think outside the box is everything that someone, everything that's worked for someone that is 2030 years older than you. I don't Like it's gonna work for you, because the times change so quickly. And yes, every right.
Alex Ferrari 1:20:05
It's not 1991 you are not Robert Rodriguez, it's not gonna happen that way anymore. Guys, it's gonna work the same way. It works a different way,like YouTube.
Ted Sim 1:20:14
That's what I mean by the research and things that you're doing right now. And you're guaranteed people are researching, they research the way that old people made it, it's not going to be the way that you're going to make and I'm sorry, it's just not the industry is changing too much. Try something new. Do it earnestly put all your effort into it, and just see what happens. And you might be surprised.
Alex Ferrari 1:20:35
It could fall flat on its face, or you can have the room. Okay. Are those the only two options we have? I really is that. I mean, it could be really bad. Or it could be the room? it I don't know, that's really.
Ted Sim 1:20:55
Now what is a horribly hard ban. I mean, everyone listening to this knows this, but it's just like, it's tough out there man took a look.
Alex Ferrari 1:21:03
If anyone, if anyone listens to my podcast understands how I mean, I've given a lot of tough love conversations and tough love episodes, where I'm like, you know, follow your dream, but Don't be an idiot, you know. And, you know, and all my work is about trying to break down the realities of the film business while still being supportive, while still being motivated, while still trying to educate them. And like I'm not saying it's impossible. I'm saying it's going to be harder than you've ever imagined. But I'm going to show you, at least from my perspective, tools that can help you learn that path. You know,
Ted Sim 1:21:33
Yeah, like, you know, I'm one of the things that I like to think is like, if you were doing this in any other industry, would this be a waste of time? Yes. Or, like if you were if you spent five years working on a screenplay. Let's just pretend like la has this weird thing. And so he has this thing. No one's got this
Alex Ferrari 1:21:54
Coffeeshops final draft and coffee shops. Yeah, I get it. I get
Ted Sim 1:21:56
Yes, definitely. It's got this, this way of making, wasting your time seem like a normal thing to do. And you you can fall into that into that vagueness, you can fall into that that lazy river, because you'll sit in the lazy river forever. And one of the things that helps is if you're not from that city, go home and just just look around and be like, if I lived in, you know, from Baltimore, so I'll say Baltimore, I lived in Baltimore, and I spent five years working on something. How would people view me, they see you as a bomb. I'm sorry, they would view you as a bomb. But for some reason, when you're in LA, and you tell somebody working on your screenplay for five years, they're like, oh, it must be really good. Just don't let yourself fall into that. Look at it. Like you're looking at it like any other job seriously. It must be really good. But let's let's just assume like, you know, like, say you did want to work and you want to be like a lawyer or something. And you just said like, Oh, I'm just like, studying this for the bar and contract for five years. What? So you're, you're a bum? You got a treat? You got to be that cutthroat about it. You can't just say Oh, because I'm in the film industry. This is okay. It's it's, it's not okay. And I don't mean this to say this as a bummer. Because I'm sure someone's like, Man, that really bummed me out. No, I'm not trying to say that I'm just, it's easier to say things that are nice and like, everything's fine. It is harder to say things like, you need to get your you get your stuff together, because that means that we actually care. And that's the only reason why I'm saying this is because I do actually care for this poor soul out there that's lost in the LA River of screenplays and coffee shops. The horrible situation but
Alex Ferrari 1:23:38
Like I always say, anytime I jump into an Uber, I always go so how's the screenplay going? And they go, How'd you know? It's either how, how's the screenplay going? How's the screenplay going? or How was the casting call? It's one of those two. And it's, it's sad, but it's true. And I'm not trying to lose. We all have to hustle. We all got to do our things. I'm, I'm making a joke. But you know if, if anything, I've done more than enough to help the community so I can make occasional joke. It's okay.
Ted Sim 1:24:15
If you're doing it for like six months or something like that, and get your thing started. Trust me that's different.
Alex Ferrari 1:24:20
No, no, it looks like you know, the duplass brothers right? Course mark and Jay right. So the duplass brothers when they first got back from Sundance with puffy chair, they were the toast of the town. So they went on the water bottle tour, you know, the water ball to around to all the agencies and all the studios in the lounge and you got to give it a water ball. Yeah. And you just end up with everything. You say no, and you and you meet them. You meet everybody like we want to work with you want to work with you. What's your project, let's put it up. Let's get in development. And a year goes by and they go, we haven't made anything. So they decided to call up their agents and say, we're not taking any more meetings. And they're like, but that's the way this town runs. You've got to take me He's like, nope, we're gonna go make stuff. Sorry. Yeah. And it worked out okay.
Ted Sim 1:25:05
I felt all mixed up and they will call it's the, you know, when I was doing commercials all the same thing it was, it was never because you had a great meeting. It was always because they watched something that they liked and they were like, Can you make? And let's be real. It's always Can you make this again? but for us it cheaper? Yeah, for sure. Yeah. Well, you're lucky though. Like maybe we'll make it a little bit nice if you're lucky. If you're lucky.
Alex Ferrari 1:25:29
Yeah, it always comes from what you do. Once you do creates more action for sure. When you were doing commercials, didn't you love when they said, you go out and you bid a job for like, you know, puppies, there's going to be a horse in the shot and the like, but there's no horses on your reel. Dude, it's a horse. I don't need to pull a performance from the horse. Are you kidding? I mines was dialogue. I had done all non dialogue stuff I had no one's speaking because commercials you don't have to speak you know? And everyone's like, but how do you we don't know if you can direct act like can you get I'm like, Guys, this is not Godfather, man. It's like, hey, iPhone. Like it's not like it's your lines. Guys. Are you kidding me?
Ted Sim 1:26:11
It's people that are scared of looking down in front of their bosses. Right? Some some see some see some Greg's eye somewhere is like is holding on for dear life being like if I just keep working this job for 40 years, I'll be head and Korea head of creative at one of these places. But I just can't get fired in the meanwhile. So they want to recommend the safest option. Every single time
Alex Ferrari 1:26:34
Just in case,just in case you as a director screw up. I'm like, Well, everything on paper looked okay. It's not my friend
Ted Sim 1:26:40
I picked the exact guy that has lots of horror stuff on his reel. And he did the horse thing for our horse commercial I was there was no one could blame me for this decision. Truly, there was no one better, better.
Alex Ferrari 1:26:50
I mean, he is the horse guy. Like it's like, Oh, Jesus. Alright, what is the lesson that took you the longest to learn whether in the film business or in life?
Ted Sim 1:27:01
I'm still learning this lesson, but fail fast. And everyone's heard this. Everybody has heard this, you don't really understand what it means. You don't understand what it means you think fail fast means like, write it write a first draft. And then like, look at it again tomorrow. No, I mean, like, write something that's awful, and show it to a lot of people. And you gotta gotta get used to that. And I don't care what industry you're in, I don't care if you're a writer, if you're a filmmaker, if your cinematographer go shoot something horrible, and stand next to it, and be like, this is the thing that I made. It's so hard, but just do it earlier than later get used to that feeling feel comfortable in that feeling. It's something that like, I wake up every day and again, you know, these days I'm doing I'm doing more company running through stuff. So I made probably five decisions that I regret every day. And you have to go back on them and say, you know what we tried? Because you can't just do the same thing all the time. Well, those are not going to go anywhere.
Alex Ferrari 1:27:59
Right? They're very good advisor. Now, what was the biggest fear you had to overcome to make your very first film?
Ted Sim 1:28:07
Oh, man. I don't know if I'm a great person to ask this question to
Alex Ferrari 1:28:12
Because you're fearless. Are you fearless?
Ted Sim 1:28:14
No, no, I don't think that you think Well, the question would be greatest fear.
Alex Ferrari 1:28:19
The greatest fear you had to overcome to make you first fear to make your first project to shoot your first thing.
Ted Sim 1:28:25
Just looking dumb. Yeah, everyone's afraid of that. Right? It's It's scary to say this thing I'm born to do and then make something bad. It's like, well, what were you born for them? That's literally what that's
Alex Ferrari 1:28:36
You've attached your personality to your job or to your career.
Ted Sim 1:28:38
And I'm born to do look at this thing. It's mediocre. was I born for a mediocre reason? No, that's the people feel that way. And I take that myself.
Alex Ferrari 1:28:49
Just be careful. And three of your favorite films of all time.
Ted Sim 1:28:55
I hate this question. actually asked this question for team members as a joke. And we just like it because I feel like no matter what answer you give, everyone, either they either give you the or they just rail into you. I decided that my answer to this question is Ratatouille and all movies are based on the Ratatouille scale? It does the movie have a rat in it? It's a six out of 10 got the movie cooking in it. It's a seven out of 10. Okay, the rat cooks, it's a nine out of 10 and up to two zeros on this list of movies over beers. Okay, fair enough. I get a lot of movies.
Alex Ferrari 1:29:32
So where can people find you and what you're doing online?
Ted Sim 1:29:36
Yeah, absolutely. Anyone that cares about technology and gear and again, I'd say this instant fully standing by all the stuff that I say about gear research to be procrastination. For some people, it's also just their true and deep love. They really love gear. And honestly, there's a part of me that really does love the technology behind it. sponsor. aperture is probably the easiest place for that. And then any model of courses where we're just having fun hanging out, learning about filmmaking, and I'm learning along just with everybody else, bringing on people, I think a lot of the guests that we bring on our recommendations from people that watch, so Indy Mogul as well to wherever on YouTube, we have podcasts.
Alex Ferrari 1:30:16
They're cool. But thank you so much for coming on, man. I know, we could talk for at least another four or five hours, but you're a busy man. And I got things to do as well. But I do appreciate it. I would love to have you back sometime. And it was it was great, man. So thanks for being on the show, brother.
Ted Sim 1:30:29
Yeah it's fun. Thanks, I appreciate it.
Alex Ferrari 1:30:33
I want to thank Dan for coming on the show and dropping those major knowledge bombs on the indie film hustle tribe today. Thank you. So so much, Ted, for the good work you're doing over at aperture and at Indy Mogul. If you want links to anything we spoke about in this episode, head over to the show notes at indiefilmhustle.com/392. Thank you guys for listening. I want you guys to stay safe out there. It is crazy. In the world. There's a lot of things hitting us from all sorts of places. And you know, really quickly I do want to address what is going on in the streets of the us right now. What happened to George Floyd is irreprehensible and there has to be a change in how we treat each other. In not only this country, but around the world. Change has to happen and change needs to happen. And if it means taking to the streets and protesting peacefully, then so be it. If I may finish the episode with another quote by Dr. Martin Luther King. Darkness cannot drive out darkness only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate. Only love can do that. Stay safe out there guys. Do whatever you can to help. All the problems we have in the world today. Whether it's what's going on on the streets, whether it's Coronavirus, whether it's the economy. humming guys it is a crazy time I just hope in wish that we could just put 20 back in the oven to see if it's truly done because my God, what a hell of a year so far, and we ain't seen nothing yet. I have a feeling. So stay safe out there guys. And as always, keep that hustle going. Keep that dream alive. And I'll talk to you soon.
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WATCH A FREE 3 PART LOW-BUDGET FILM PRODUCING VIDEO SERIES
Taught by veteran award-winning film producer and author Suzanne Lyons. The filmmaker behind over a dozen profitable low-budget feature films.