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Should You Own Your Own Film Gear?

Happy New Year IFH Tribe! We are now in 2017 and this will be ana amazing, creative and monumental year for us all. I wanted to start off the year with an “Ask Alex” episode. On this episode I answer the following tribe member questions:

  • Though I plan on hiring a DP for my movies, I’d like to invest in my very own camera equipment and lights. (Was thinking about investing in that BlackMagic Cinema you keep raving about.)

    However, I’m being advised NOT to buy my own camera and lights! I was told that unless I’m planning on being a DP myself, and unless I plan on keeping up with all the new models of cameras coming out (which can be expensive), that buying camera equipment makes no sense.

    What say you? Shouldn’t an independent filmmaker seek to have his or her own filmmaking arsenal, just in case? Shouldn’t directors at least try to go out, shoot, get a feel for the camera, etc., so that they are better directors, even if they’ll never be DPS? 

  • What advice would you give someone working with non-acting actors who will be getting little to no pay?
  • So If I go to submit my film to contests and festivals will I have problems with people in public in background shots?
  • Would make the background more out of focus help?
  • I have scenes in stores. Do I need to blur product labels?
  • When is the perfect time in pre-production should you start casting?
  • How important do you feel it is to shoot on film if your plan is to go to the big film festivals hoping to get a distribution deal?  Taking Dov Simens DVD class he stresses its important, but the content is in the age of miniDV, so technology has changed quite a bit since those DVDs were produced.  Although I know the story is really more important than digital vs film, which do you feel the major film festivals are looking for today or does it matter any more?  I’m looking to shoot mostly film (~75%) and mix some shots and coverage that are shot digitally (~25%).

Let’s get to answering some questions.

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  1. Rise of the Filmtrepreneur®: How to Turn Your Indie Film into a Moneymaking Business
  2. Rise of the Filmtrepreneur®: FREE AUDIOBOOK
  3. Indie Film Hustle TV (Streaming Real-World Film Education)
  4. – Closed Caption Your Indie Film ($10 off Your First Order)
  5. Alex Ferrari’s Shooting for the Mob (Based on the Incredible True Filmmaking Story)


  1. Indie Film Hustle TV (Streaming Real-World Film Education)
  2. Hollywood Film School: Filmmaking & TV Directing Masterclass
  3. Filmmaker in a Box – Learn How to Make an Indie Film – 18 Hours+ of Lessons 
  4. Storytelling Blueprint: Hero’s Two Journeys
  5. The Dialogue Series: 38 hours of Lessons from Top Hollywood Screenwriters


  1. Filmtrepreneur® Podcast
  2. Bulletproof Screenwriting® Podcast
  3. Six Secrets to getting into Film Festivals for FREE!
  4. (Download Your FREE Filmmaking Audio Book)

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If you like Should You Own Your Own Film Gear?, then click below:
Why Filmmakers are Always So Damn Broke & What They Can Do to Change It

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