How Is a Filmmaker Consumed by a Passion Project?
The following is a guest post from Michael R. Barnard, who is in the final days of an Indiegogo campaign for his film, Everybody Says Goodbye: The Story of a Father and Son.
For many years, I have been chasing a motion picture project that has completely consumed me. It’s called Everybody Says Goodbye: The Story of a Father and Son, and I first began writing the screenplay in 1998. Having come so close to making the movie a few times, I keep referring to this project as “a fish-hook in the eye” because it’s impossible for me to ignore and walk away from.
If you remember that there once was a glimmer of hope for more sustainable financing for innovative small business (and, for my concern, an indie film industry) through “Equity Crowdfunding” as demanded by the JOBS Act of 2012, the fact is that it’s not going to happen. It’s already far past the Act’s imposed deadlines because the concept is anathema to the entrenched and self-interested bureaucracy.
Instead of becoming a ‘big brother’ to the dynamic and egalitarian donor crowdfunding process that helped the art of indie film continue through the Great Recession and the Great Digital Disruption, the SEC and FINRA bureaucracies have delayed it and gutted it by turning it into a ‘little sister’ to mammoth elitist and exclusive brokerages.
A key element to kill the hope of equity crowdfunding: “the SEC decided that the financial statements should be provided in accordance with US GAAP (Generally Accepted Accounting Procedures). That is expensive…” and beyond the capability of most small business start-ups.
Equity crowdfunding will be nothing more than an easier way for the well-to-do professional investors to invest money in large corporations, but will not be an open door for the common citizen to participate in rebuilding America’s economy. There will be no widespread job creation, just as there hasn’t been since the Act was signed years ago. The dreams of the JOBS Act and its Equity Crowdfunding have been swallowed up by the bureaucracy and entrenched self-interests of the professional funding elite.
Say goodbye to the crashed dream of Equity Crowdfunding helping rebuild America through small business creation (including a healthy indie film industry infrastructure.)
By the way, if you are the type of person who believes entrenched anti-citizen bureaucracy can be swayed, you can let the SEC know your opinion about allowing Equity Crowdfunding to be accessible to all citizens by emailing your statement to firstname.lastname@example.org
See “JOBS Act, Title III: A Brief Update on What’s Happening Behind the Scenes“)
Also see my original assessment, “FILMMAKERS, IT’S 2013. DO YOU KNOW WHERE YOUR JOBS ACT IS?“
I was at a seminar this week that purported to be about the new EQUITY CROWDFUNDING, but sadly, the panel was populated by finance professionals whose disdain for those of us who are not “high end, high net worth” made the panel useless.
These types of professional fundraisers, coming from the status quo investment community, are not willing to acknowledge that the true value of EQUITY CROWDFUNDING is the escape from the expense, time and headache of pursuing Reg D exemptions and PPMs (“Private Placement Memorandums”). They collect monstrous fees to create those, so they have no respect for those who pursue crowdfunding as an entry to the financial world. Continue reading
The Securities and Exchange Commission is accepting comments on how it will formulate rules for the new equity CROWDFUNDING act that was included in the JOBS ACT. (See my story on ReelGrok.com at http://www.reelgrok.com/jobs-act-crowdfunding)
This is important for indie filmmakers, since the ability to reasonably raise up to $1,000,000 from investors could reinvigorate the indie film biz.
Written by Michael R. Barnard for ReelGrok.com “Where Filmmakers Get It!”
President Obama signed the JOBS ACT into law on April 5th, 2012.
ReelGrok.com “Where Filmmakers Get It”
Called the ‘‘Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act,’’ the goal is to increase American job creation and economic growth by improving access to the public capital markets for emerging growth companies. It will make it easier for small businesses to raise money so they can create jobs and rebuild the American economy by amending the Securities Act of 1933. It can have a profound impact on the independent filmmaking industry.
President Obama said, “We are a nation of doers. We think big. We take risks. This is a country that’s always been on the cutting edge. The reason is, America has always had the most daring entrepreneurs. When their businesses take off, more people get employed.”
That’s a boost the independent filmmaking industry needs. “I think we’ll see the $1 million range and down to $100,000 or so flourish with this new model,” says entertainment attorney Gordon P. Firemark.
The American Jobs Act
READ MORE AT REELGROK.COM “WHERE FILMMAKERS GET IT”
FILMMAKERS, this is very important:
WHAT CONGRESS DID
The house has passed the Entrepreneur Access to Capital Act which offers a tremendous opportunity to rebuild the independent film industry. The Act is designed to allow businesses to raise capital through crowdfunding. Under current securities laws, filmmakers can only ask for donations, and donors support the film without any participation in its potential profit.