Faq pitching for film and tv

You want to realize your plan for a film or tv programme. How will you mobilize and convince people? Therefore you do not only need business know how but most importantly: knowledge about your audience. Consider the car salesman who gears his story to a new buyer, time after time. He knows all the good points of his cars, but he concentrates on the points that are important for the person he's trying to convince; he looks at and listens to his customer in order to connect with the experiences and desires of that person. Pitching is just the same: you describe the core of your film plan, short and sweet, geared to your audience.

Catch the catcher

In film and tv jargon you are the pitcher and the listeners are the catchers. They may be potential crew members, but mostly also professionals who are interested in new film projects: producers, editors from broadcasting companies, financiers and distributors.

Before you make the pitch be sure you have a good image of these catchers and what interests them. Among other things, a professional catcher will look at whether the audience you are aiming your film at is also his audience. You can gather information about catchers through research, networking, cinema visits and professional trade literature. 

Most professional catchers can be found at pre-sales markets and festivals. You can also approach them personally. Remember that your pitch should be short, varying from 30 seconds at an informal meeting to 10 minutes during an official pitch session at a pre-sales market.

What do you tell?

The core of your pitch are the themes of your story and the way you work these out in your narration. Think about story technique, style, design and the financial plan, and of course target group, length, format and genre.

It is essential to explain what makes your film plan different from other films. And for the catcher it is important to know what you want to bring about in the minds of the audience and how you plan to do that. List the plus points of your film plan. This helps you stimulate the catchers and focus their attention on you and your plan; moments in the film that jump off the screen, a well-known actor, etc.

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How do you say it?

A pitch is really a sales story. What needs to come across is your passion. Use expressive language and involve your audience. Begin with a catchy opening sentence and use a 'pitch line' if it's appropriate - a sentence which repeats the essence of your plan. Show enthusiasm, professionalism and faith in your product. Practice presentation techniques and your body language in front of the mirror, and with friends and family. If they keep listening to you then you know you're on the right track. If their attention wanes, then you have to start over.

Making a Pitching Pilot is a must. A Pitching Pilot is a trailer that is specially made to visually promote the ‘selling’ of your film. A pitch is designed to find partners for your film, so you make a different kind of trailer from what you would make for the public.