SAICFF: 10:15 A.M. - 10/28
In his session, "Outside Hollywood: The Core Thesis," Doug Phillips shared four reasons why this is the perfect time to be a Christian filmmaker:
Number One: We have access to technology. Right now, for $10,000, you can build a fully functional film studio and start cranking out films. Previously these tools were unavailable to anyone outside of Hollywood or who weren't independently wealthy.
Number Two: We have genuine methods of distribution. It used to be that Hollywood completely controlled the distribution mechanism. You simply could not get your film out to a large audience apart from the Hollywood machine. However, now there are more and more options for distribution. Many people are bypassing the theaters altogether. Instead, churches are gathering thousands of Christians within their doors to show films they believe will be uplifting and profitable. The Internet is arguably the biggest tool for change, as the new Movie iPod brings to the public's attention a whole new way to distribute and watch movies. Vision Forum is currently considering the development of an online Christian film store where you can download high-caliber Christian films for a minimal price.
Important Side Note: Mr. Phillips also argued that a big part of Christian films being distributed is for Christians themselves to start supporting it. He said that we tend to spend much of our money subsidizing Hollywood's raunchy films by watching them in the theaters or renting them on DVD. Here at the SAICFF, Vision Forum is putting their money where their mouth is, by saying: "You made a Christ-honoring, epistemologically self-conscious film, here is $10,000."
As Christians our part is to spend the bulk of our money on what which is excellent, beautiful, and above reproach.
Number Three: God is raising up an army. Doug Phillips compared this independent Christian film movement to the homeschool movement of the 1970's and '80's, saying that we need the same willingness to pioneer, to battle, and to cast an exciting new vision for reform.
Number Four: God is opening up new opportunities for training. Older, mature Christian filmmakers are increasingly taking young filmmakers as apprentices in a mentoring relationship. In this movement, Mr. Phillips argued, we need to be auto-didacts. We need to teach ourselves and be taught by others.