Film making on a budget

The Blair Witch Project, Clerks, Paranormal Activity - all low budget films that went on to make huge box office returns. So what are the secrets of successful independent budget film making, and if you're not born with a silver spoon in your mouth, how do you take your fledgling film to the next level?

For novice film makers, barriers to production are dropping all the time, or so we're led to believe. Good quality camera kits are cheaply available; post production is much more affordable; and there are now any number of platforms to publish and distribute your work.  Simon Smith is joined by film makers Dominic Brunt, Marc Price and Chris Jones, who faced all of the above questions and survived.

"Be bold, make as many mistakes as you can, and keep going." – Chris Jones

The CoP Show panel discuss how to make the leap from short form to full feature, looking at how funding models such as crowd sourcing and government grants can help and sometimes hinder your production. They also examine how to make sure you have the right mix of people with the right mix of skills to get your film completed, and discuss the best ways to blag, beg and badger people to be your crew and your cast.  They end by sharing their experience of the many decisions film makers need to make about kit and post production and offer their advice to budding film makers on how to get those distribution deals, film festivals and competitions.

Dominic Brunt is a TV actor turned director, whose recent release Before Dawn is receiving critical acclaim. A comic book obsessive "with an insatiable appetite for zombie movies", he created the annual Leeds Zombie Film Festival in 2007.

Marc Price is a writer, director, camera operator, editor and producer. He has shot bumpers and shorts for Film 4's Frightfest and is currently developing a TV series with Lime Pictures and E4. He rose to prominence with Colin, a zombie feature which became known as the ‘£45 feature film’, causing uproar amongst the movie glitterati at Cannes. His new film Magpie, the second independently-financed feature length film from Nowhere Fast Productions, premiered at the Bradford International Film Festival in April 2013.

Chris Jones is an award winning film maker and co-author of The Guerilla Film Makers Handbook. He has made several films, including White Angel, Gone Fishing, Urban Ghost Story and The Runner. He also runs film making workshops and is the head of the annual London Screenwriters Festival.