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Thursday, December 16, 2004

When in Doubt, Adjust

I have changed my proposal to PRI slightly. (I did this by e-mail the other day.) I am no longer asking them to fund the show, just to market it and distribute it. The Program Manager e-mailed me back to wish me luck on the fundraising end and to tell me that I should be hearing from her soon. Which would be great.

I think the money part may have been holding them up, but if I can get them to--even provisionally--agree to distribute the show, I'm pretty sure that I can find the money. I'm actually thinking about tryting to get investors or some venture capital to put into a production company. There are a lot of details to this, but the basic idea is to pay a return on the investment from sales of CDs and memorabilia.

The thing is, I'm just not a public funding kind of guy. I've been embedded in the private sector for over 20 years now, and I know that world, the money-grubbing, sell-your-mother-for-the-right-price world. These are the people I'm comfortable doing business with.

I guess it's a case of going with your strengths, right?


C.Potts said...

Ballpark, how much would it cost to produce a radio show? What are the expenses involved?

*Feel free not to answer if I'm being too nosy -- just curious to see what it would take to get a show up and going*

Len said...

I've put a budget together that comes in at around $450,000. The biggest chunk goes to writing fees (I used the Writer's Guild minimums for half-hour TV as my guideline). The next biggest chunk goes to recording studios both for the main dialogue and post-production. Then comes the costs for the actors (using AFTRA minimums for TV). Since I plan to record the dialogue in LA, I've also included travel expenses for that. There's also office expenses, the purchase of an iMac or PC, software, and that sort of thing. I probably could've put in amounts for directing and producing, but I'm kind of throwing those in under the writing budget.

Len said...

Oh, yeah. There's also money for music. One three-episode arc is a musical, and I'll need some incidental music to segue from scene-to-scene with. This could be some lucky music major's big break.

C.Potts said...

Wow -- y0u're talking a big chunk of change here. I do think radio work pays considerably less than TV, tho, unless you're writing for Prairie home companion or the like.

I'll be watching to see how this comes together. I truly had no idea of the scale of the project. Pretty amazing stuff.

Len said...

I've always been ambitious. Not successful, but ambitious. Neither the Writer's Guild nor AFTRA had radio rates posted on their websites, so I used the cheapest TV rates as my guidelines. I'm going to have to be stictly union if I'm going to get the people I want. And really, this is thirteen episodes of radio for less than a single episode of a TV sitcom. A pretty good buy when all is said and done.