The film and television industry is changing. Over the past few years, there has been a constant shift in how films are being made. With convergence of technology and entertainment, there are becoming more and more ways to create independent film. This great news for the Indie filmmaker and even better news for studios since this will allow more access to films they normally would have never seen.
Enter the company called Dogfish Accelerator. What is Dogfish Accelerator? It is the world's first accelerator program for film producers and on December 6th they hosted the very first Dogfish Accelerator Demo Day at the Microsoft Technology Center in New York City. The event was put together to allow 8 selected films companies the opportunity to pitch and display their work.
During the program, each of the eight companies participating were given the chance to present their projects in front of over 200 investors, film production companies, distributors and other entertainment industry thought leaders to discuss fundraising efforts for their companies. This is one of the new ways of doing business in the film arena in the hopes of the projects getting made and brought to the big screen, small screen or internet.
The pitch began with an introduction from Dogfish Accelerator Founder and Managing Director, James Belfer. He gave the crowd a brief history of the company and explained the mission the company has for up and coming filmmakers. According to Belfer in a statement from the press release, "the film industry needs to shift the way it develops, markets and monetizes independent films and other valuable content assets. In short, film producers need to think like a startup." "We're very excited to present investors and entertainment executives a first glimpse at our teams: eight innovative film and new media production companies who will ultimately change the landscape and economics of the independent content creation industry."
The Dogfish Accelerator program utilized entrepreneurial skills and techniques to develop a business strategy for projects submitted. The companies worked with the Dogfish Accelerator team and more than 50 industry mentors to refine their film financing model; develop and deploy targeted marketing strategies; and create key branding and distribution partnerships to yield a greater likelihood of financial return. In fact, some of these mentor relationships have blossomed into investments.
Launched at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, the first Dogfish Accelerator program started this September after an extensive selection process that whittled 440 applications down to eight teams focused on producing and distributing in dependent films and new media content. The participating companies received $18,000 in seed funding from Dogfish, plus perks and resources, free office space,and mentorship from industry leaders.
For more information about Dogfish Accelerator and the teams presenting at the Dogfish Accelerator Demo Day, please go to their webpage. Also, to view the CEO's speech, check out this video. With the success of this first event, it is definitely a great possibility that there will be other events planned for the future.