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Babylon 5 Movie through Studio JMS

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  • But wouldn’t this kind of financing be more akin to a bank lending money to a business. The business plan wouldn’t be limited to saying something like ‘we’re a production studio’. It would have to include why they want the money, and a detailed breakdown of what they’re going to spend it on.

    I’d be surprised if the (most likely experienced in the entertainment industry) investors didn’t also install an accountant and possibly an experienced management team to ensure that the money is used for purpose….. Then again they might just – because this is what doing otherwise basically amounts to - take jms’s word that he has some kick ass ideas were to spend the money. Come on Jan, your kidding yourself on if you think large scale professional investors won’t involve themselves in what jms will be doing (including looking at the market), and that involvement will be on-going.

    Saying that. The involvement doesn’t necessarily have to go as deep as providing notes like a studio does, when something is in production (but I wouldn’t rule it out). So at an artistic level, these investors might give jms a fair amount of freedom. But to suggest they’ll hand over the cash and then don’t have much say in what it is spent on is, I’d suggest, naive in the extreme.

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    • All I can tell you is that he said he was looking for investors. Not a loan. Two different terms with two different connotations. And in financial investment terms, getting ten people tot put up two hundred million dollars isn't large scale at all.

      I'm thinking it's more likely to be along the lines of JMS picking up the phone and saying, "Hey, [insert incredibly wealthy showbiz mogul here], I was just thinking about that script you bought from me a while ago for [lots and lots of money] and I wanted to give you a shot at investing in this studio I've started. It's a multi-format company for producing films and TV and comics and stuff. So far it's made the upcoming 'Sense8' for Netflix and there are two others in pre-production. Next year I'm thinking of starting work on a couple of movies. Does that interest you at all? How about I send you a prospectus?"

      ETA: Needless to say, this is all the sheerest speculation.

      Jan
      Last edited by Jan; 03-27-2015, 06:26 AM.
      "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

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      • I was surprised to find out that the US Securities and Exchange Commission regulates investment in films. Those regulations have been loosened today.

        Why Mom-and-Pop Film Funding May Not Be Good for Hollywood
        Movies | By Todd Cunningham on March 27, 2015 @ 5:00 am
        http://www.thewrap.com/why-mom-and-p...for-hollywood/

        When mainstream investors lose their money, or get bilked and sue, it’s going to make trouble for the movie biz

        John and Joanne Q. Public can bankroll movies now and count on getting rich doing it, thanks to the approval of a key provision in President Obama’s JOBS Act this week that allows nearly every American to invest in films and other startup businesses.

        But the new regulations approved by the Securities and Exchange Commission aren’t necessarily a good thing for the public. First, they may not be able to afford qualifying. And if they do qualify, they’re far more likely to lose money than they are to get rich in the extremely high-return, higher-risk film business.

        While lowering the standards that formerly restricted film investing to the wealthy in order to protect the little guy creates a new revenue stream, both indies and the studios could be hurt in the long run. ...
        Last edited by Dan Dassow; 03-27-2015, 04:55 PM. Reason: Original post munched

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        • Have there been hints at exactly how much money where looking at? the typical mega blockbuster seems to be $150+ million but I'm not sure that's essential with B5.

          Obviously changes could be made but the advantage of this kind of production in the first place was that the production wasn't THAT expensive, less need for massive sets and space battle FX can be good deal simpler and that a lot of more "personal" FX work(CGI characters for example).

          With todays technology I would think JMS could put something pretty impression together with $50 million and that lowers the threshold for success significantly.
          Who are you?
          What do you want?
          What is the average inflight speed of an unladened swallow?

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          • When he announced the movie he said

            Originally posted by JMS
            And we’ll use that to parlay serious investment in the studio. I’m not talking Kickstarter, I’m talking about one hundred million dollars, two hundred million dollars; we already have people who are lined up and interested in doing that.
            And afterwards he clarified that for the B5 movie itself he's looking at $80-100 million.

            Jan
            "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

            Comment


            • Which does seem more realistic than the $150-200 million for the really top of the tree releases although it is getting to the level where your talking serious takings to turn a profit, likely well beyond an existing B5 fanbase.
              Last edited by moreorless; 03-29-2015, 11:24 PM.
              Who are you?
              What do you want?
              What is the average inflight speed of an unladened swallow?

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              • Yeah, it's definitely going to need more than the existing fan base. I think Serenity, the Firefly movie taught us that, even as motivated as all of those fans are/were. It's definitely a hurdle that will have to be overcome since the big SF movies that JMS has written (Silver Surfer, Forbidden Planet, Lensman) all seem to have fallen into development hell and not escaped.

                Jan
                "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

                Comment


                • Guardians Of The Galaxy cost a lot to make - and I wonder how much of that went into just advertising?
                  Except to comic book geeks, this was a pretty obscure story but it did well with a worldwide gross of over $774 million.


                  ..so maybe with the current Batman, Superman, Spiderman fatigue..a B5 Movie stands a chance of being another dark horse.
                  Last edited by DaveNarn; 03-30-2015, 05:17 PM.

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                  • Originally posted by Jan View Post
                    Yeah, it's definitely going to need more than the existing fan base. I think Serenity, the Firefly movie taught us that, even as motivated as all of those fans are/were. It's definitely a hurdle that will have to be overcome since the big SF movies that JMS has written (Silver Surfer, Forbidden Planet, Lensman) all seem to have fallen into development hell and not escaped.

                    Jan
                    A B5 film would have the advantage though that whilst the existing fan base won't turn a profit they will be an insurance policy against it totally bombing. A lot of the time I think that's what Hollywood is actually after with these existing properties, making sure you don't have a Pluto Nash on your hands.

                    A big factor with budget as well I'd imagine is the kind of cast your looking at. One thing that actually strikes me is that if the film were based on the Earth/Minbari war or flashbacks to it thats very much the territory of a certain Mr Cruise, Alien invasions with a bit of mystery around the protagonist have been his speciality in recent years. He certainly wouldn't be my first choice as a lead but it would doubtless make getting the budget much easier if he were.
                    Who are you?
                    What do you want?
                    What is the average inflight speed of an unladened swallow?

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                    • Originally posted by moreorless View Post
                      One thing that actually strikes me is that if the film were based on the Earth/Minbari war or flashbacks to it thats very much the territory of a certain Mr Cruise, Alien invasions with a bit of mystery around the protagonist have been his speciality in recent years. He certainly wouldn't be my first choice as a lead but it would doubtless make getting the budget much easier if he were.
                      And immediately increase the budget by another 100 million. I don't know what Cruise gets paid these days but I think he would be more drain than draw.

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                      • Originally posted by Nastastu View Post
                        And immediately increase the budget by another 100 million. I don't know what Cruise gets paid these days but I think he would be more drain than draw.
                        $200 million with Cruise would I'd imagine be easier to raise than $100 million without a big star, again not that I'm really pushing for him although I could see him playing a Sinclair like character.
                        Who are you?
                        What do you want?
                        What is the average inflight speed of an unladened swallow?

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                        • Originally posted by Nastastu View Post
                          And immediately increase the budget by another 100 million. I don't know what Cruise gets paid these days but I think he would be more drain than draw.
                          At least, that way, people would go see it!

                          And yes, there's not a massive 'built in' audience like Marvel or Trek films. I think the B5 film will have to be bloody good to do well at the box office. Even if it is absolutely great, that's still no guarantee of success these days.
                          Captain John Sheridan: I really *hate* it when you do that.

                          Kosh: Good!

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                          • Tom Cruise seems to be the guy who is always on the red carpet, and he knows how to play the crowds.

                            He does sci-fi well, Edge Of Tommorrow and Oblivian for example and he knows how to make an entertaining movie franchise with Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation due out July 31, 2015


                            He would be a good station commander or maybe a better Garibaldi?

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                            • Originally posted by DaveNarn View Post
                              Tom Cruise seems to be the guy who is always on the red carpet, and he knows how to play the crowds.

                              He does sci-fi well, Edge Of Tommorrow and Oblivian for example and he knows how to make an entertaining movie franchise with Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation due out July 31, 2015

                              He would be a good station commander or maybe a better Garibaldi?
                              He would most likely need to star, again he wouldn't be my first choice but honestly I could see him playing a character close to Sinclair, especially if the tension round similar potential involvement in the Minbari is played up. Cruise these days isn't so easy to buy as a standard hero but he plays a strung out/desperate well IMHO.

                              As you say Cruise and sci fi go together a lot, besides those two you have War of the Worlds and Minority Report.
                              Who are you?
                              What do you want?
                              What is the average inflight speed of an unladened swallow?

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                              • If Tom Cruise, arguably the biggest movie star on the planet, is fair game, why stop there?

                                Sinclair: Harrison Ford
                                Sheridan: Tom Cruise
                                Garibaldi: Bruce Willis
                                Ivanova: Angelina Jolie
                                Franklin: Will Smith ("You're gonna let your kid die? Aww, hell naw!")
                                G'Kar: Johnny Depp
                                Delenn: Natalie Portman
                                Londo: Tom Hanks

                                This could work ...
                                Last edited by sarthaz; 04-02-2015, 06:06 AM.

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