A Guide To Low Budget Filmmaking: Part II

Making a film is no easy task and it sure is an expensive venture, but many budget friendly options exist for us abundantly hopeful millennials trying to produce an independently financed project.

A week ago I posted a blog titled A Guide To Low Budget Filmmaking: Part I in which I touched on the different factors that make up a production budget and some tips on how to plan for producing a low budget film. Now I will go over the countless equipment options available for anyone looking to get the most out of their gear without using up their entire bank account.


First and foremost, when it comes to production equipment I highly recommend renting equipment over buying, especially when you’re working with a constrained budget. So although I will touch on the “what if’s” of purchasing equipment, I do not recommend spending thousands of dollars on equipment unless you are a working professional in the industry or plan to be a DP.

But this is a guide to low budget filmmaking, so let’s start with the most obvious option for anyone reading this post – renting equipment.



After you have put together your script, figured out all the necessary planning, and confirmed a passionate cast and crew to embark on this journey with, you are ready to choose your equipment.

Again, I highly recommend seeking a rental company to get your gear and here is why.

My first gig, if you will, was an internship as a production assistant with a production company based out of Florida. The company was started out of the CEO’s living room. So although by the time I came along they were already producing content for international companies, the majority of the business came from the equipment and space my internship offered its clients. In the production room they had all types of gear from multiple continuous lighting setups to high quality professional cameras – all of which was rented.

The point is: you will make and save more money renting than you would purchasing your core pieces. Period.

Now that you are convinced renting equipment is the better option (and if you still aren’t, oh well), it’s time to choose who or where you will be renting from. There are varying options available depending on where you are located. But I am small town guy.

Since starting my filmmaking adventures I have lived in BFE, West Virginia and currently reside in the vibrant city of Tampa, Florida.

When in West Virginia, the options are limited per the minimal selection of creative minds and industry-related businesses in the area. Being a Broadcast Journalism student in college, I was able to rent equipment from my university. But when I was unable to lock down gear for an extended period of time, I would seek out a fellow film club member to loan me what they could.

Down in Florida, I was able to find a reliable rental company 30 minutes from my house with just a quick Google search.

With this in mind, if you have limited production resources due to your location, there is no need to fear – you can order your gear! Most production rental places offer delivery options.

Just open up Google and have at it.

And before you go too crazy looking up the latest and greatest DSLR, it is best to do a little homework and research what specific gear you need.


I was film equipment illiterate before I worked with my internship. Two years later, I understand the full capabilities of my camera and all the gear that I own and always compile an equipment checklist with all the gear I will need for a project before I get started. Here is a quick run-down of the essentials:

Camera – Lens – Microphone – Lighting – Stabilizer/Tri-Pod – Source Monitor – Extra Batteries.



When choosing a camera be mindful of the two C’s – compatibility and capability.

I use a Panasonic Lumix GH4, the little brother to the potent GH5, and it rivals any 4K professional camera when you put a badass lens on it. For this reason, I always recommend researching all DSLR options prior to settling for a higher end professional camera.

You get the most bang for your buck with a DSLR, and your bank account will thank you in the long run when you realize you have save enough to invest in a badass lens! 



I have learned that a good lens will make for great content, and a great lens will give you remarkable content.

No matter if you are using a DSLR or professional camera, I recommend using a prime or zoom lens depending on your camera skills or how experimental you are feeling for said project.

The difference in the two is purely a zoom lens will allow you to zoom closer to your subject without having to move the camera, whereas a prime lens requires you to move closer and manually operate the focus.



When it comes to microphones I usually use a shotgun microphone due to its cost efficiency compared to a wireless lavalier mic.  I recommend purchasing a shotgun microphone over renting if your project calls for live audio.

Shotgun microphones provide excellent omnidirectional audio quality and can connect directly to the camera or boom pole with just a simple connection. However, their directional-specific audio focus is the one flaw of most shotgun mics.

But if you are doing any projects that require a lot of moving camera or long shots, I highly recommend a lav microphone any day of the week.

Lav microphones provide excellent quality at all times and are typically the industry standard. However I will warn you – they are expensive. I would still recommend a shotgun microphone whether you plan to rent or buy one.



Next is what makes shooting any film possible – lighting.

Lights, are first and foremost, not cheap. Doesn’t matter what kind – any continuous light source is going to cost you a pretty penny and for valid reason.

You can’t record anything without it!

In addition to this obvious fact, lighting is typically what separates novice film work from a seasoned project. If you are able to track down a nice set of LED panels or LED portrait lights, which run anywhere in the $50-150 range for a weekend rental period, that should give you the adequate artificial you need.

When lighting your scene be mindful of two aspects of the scene – subject and background. You want to make sure your subject is well-lit and the background is lit just enough to distinguish the setting or any moving pieces you want included in the scene.

Keeping a steady tone throughout the film is also key. By using tungsten or florescent filters you can dictate the mood of your project much more dramatically compared to relying heavily on the camera settings.

Most first time and inexperienced filmmakers are unaware of the power of artificial lighting. Plain and simple, artificial light will make your project noticeably better.

But before you go get yourself a budget-friendly lighting kit, I will warn you – lighting setups are tedious. Try not to spend too much time setting up your lights or you run the risk of losing your natural light, which creates the need for more artificial light.

Before you know it, you will have spent more time discussing lighting setups than you have shooting the scene.

The key to using low budget equipment is making the most out of what you have, not wasting it. Keep that in mind when you are orchestrating your lighting setup and it will make for a far more seamless part of the filmmaking process.



Another key element to a smooth production is the incorporation of a rig or stabilizer of some sort to hold the camera steady and to add variety to the angles you shoot from.

If you are reading this post, and you have not already done so, it is mandatory for any videographer to have a tripod. They are just as essential as a lens when it comes to filming.

A steady cam makes for a far more pleasurable viewing experience for all. However, not having a tripod handy will derail the quality of the final cut because unlike most production flaws you can see on camera, shaky footage is one flaw you cannot eliminate without compromising the quality of the rest of the film.

Because of this, I also recommend purchasing a stabilizer of some sort even if you already have a tripod.

Stabilizers are considered any type of device that will balance the camera at whatever angle you desire without having to worry about shaky hands causing a headache in post production.

After many infuriating editing experiences due to handheld footage, I finally gave in and purchased a DJI Ronin M stabilizer. Of course, you don’t have to spend $800 on a stabilizer to ensure you shoot quality footage. There are other options.

Monopods and various types of other handheld stabilizers are out there for a lot cheaper. Regardless of how much money you plan to spend, you will need to invest in a stabilizer of some sort.

You can rent or purchase a stabilizer. How often you use a stabilizer instead of a tripod is solely up to you. But make no mistake – you will need to invest in a tripod as part of your everyday arsenal.

Stabilizers are nice, but my favorite little gadget to use in the field is a source monitor.



A field monitor allows you to connect the video feed from the camera to an external monitor to view footage as it is being shot. Although a nice field monitor will only run you about $100-200, I recommend connecting your cell phone or tablet to the camera if you have a good size screen on your device.

I was turned onto the idea of having a monitor on set while working at my internship. We had a 20-inch monitor I was in charge of building whenever setups changed. The monitor connected directly to the camera, and when I was lucky enough to find a minute to chill with the producers, they would let me watch the live feed.

Setting up the monitor as a job duty was inspiring, to say the least.

Since then I have invested in a mount that will attach my cell phone to the stabilizer. The mount is convenient and using a cell phone is the best option for you if you have a large screen, but using a tablet as your field monitor will also work.

The cell phone is nice, but if you have a tablet and an extra set of hands to hold it while you are operating the camera – use the tablet.

If you have a cellular device or tablet and you haven’t taken it out to experiment as a source monitor, do yourself a favor and bring it next time. It will make shooting much easier as well as intensify the production viewing process.

What will also make shooting easier for everyone, or make you look like a complete novice if you forget them, are EXTRA BATTERIES!



You need these. Doesn’t matter the production schedule for the day or the type of camera you use, you are going to need at least one backup battery for all your battery-powered equipment.

And yes, you can rent these as well.

Now that you have a basic checklist to go off of when you are planning your next shoot, you should be more prepared than ever to finance the project on a budget.



One of the most overlooked aspects of novice filmmaking is if the concept calls for a single-camera or multi-camera setup.

Just as the terms suggest, single-camera productions utilize only one camera at a time while multi-camera calls for a more than one camera at a time. Most narrative films are shot using a single camera as it allows for the setting to be anywhere you want, not just the studio.

On the other hand, your Monday-Friday sitcoms are typically shot using a multiple cameras as they are produced in a studio.

Using only one camera does make for a longer production due to the various camera angles needed for each scene. However, if you are producing a film on a low budget, you most likely will not have access to an additional camera.

Don’t fret over the limited access to only one camera. As I stated before, a good camera and a great lens will go a long way in the editing room.

In addition to the camera setup, your location selection will also be limited when on a budget.

Moving from one location to the next costs time and money. You will waste time transporting equipment and setting up at the location, and you will waste money just getting from location to location. To put it simply – if you have to leave your house, it is going to cost you.

With that in mind, keep it to one or two locations if you are on a tight schedule or are looking for a sure-fire way to save a couple dollars during production.

Another cost efficient way to carry out the project is by incorporating natural lighting over artificial lighting.

As I stated previously, artificial lighting will cost you some extra money as well as rob you of precious time. In my opinion, natural light is the best light for any project because of how the light hits your subject.

Artificial lighting can be harsh at times and a pain in the ass to get the right amount of light exactly how you want it. By way of natural light you eliminate imminent harsh lighting and give your subjects a more natural look, if you will.

To keep it short and sweet – use natural lighting whenever available and artificial lighting as a backup when you are shooting interior scenes.

Now that I have shared this information with you, do not take me for a film production wizard bestowing the ultimate guide to making the next Oscar-winning short. There are a ton of ways to go about financing, researching, and obtaining your equipment.

I hope what I have shared puts the idea of low budget filmmaking in a more realistic perspective, and at the very least has inspired you to get out there and defeat the odds.

Wayne Gretzsky said it best – “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”

I look forward to seeing your film and feel free to email me at roger.turner@upstreamfilms.tv if you think of any other tricks of the trade that would help the next low budget filmmaker.

Happy filming!

A Guide To Low Budget Filmmaking: Part I

Although making films are what I love to do, just like many other up-and-coming filmmakers, me and my bank account have a very tense love-hate relationship when it comes to financing my film aspirations. So I thought I would make a guide that all of you aspiring Spielberg’s out there can reference before you outstretch your bank account, and your dreams.

First, let me give you a little backstory on my own production experiences.


I produced my first film in 2016 while in college. Later that Fall semester, I traveled to Brooklyn, NY with right-hand production engineer Gary Murray to shoot another short film starring my fellow film enthusiasts from college Dylan Murphy and Matt DeTitta. Throughout my final semester of college I also produced a couple other projects for friends looking for a cameraman. Since then, I’ve written, produced, directed, and consulted on over a dozen projects through UpStream Productions and freelance work.

Also after college is when I really learned the concept of low budget filmmaking. I have produced a Pilot (Tenants) and a feature that ended up a short due to budget restraints. All in all, I have spent less than $10,000 total on all productions combined. And if you ask me, the amount of time put into each project far exceeded the monetary investment.

With that said, let’s start with the most rudimentary element of any film – the budget.




Once you have decided on a concept and are ready to begin writing the script, the first thing you should do is figure out how much it’s going to cost you. That means everything. From equipment, props, wardrobe, makeup, location or permit fees, and travel arrangements when applicable – just to name a few things you should have on your checklist.

In a nutshell, the budget of your project should include every expense you foresee as a necessity in making and promoting the film.

Typically, the budget has two classifications – principal and background. The principal budget consists of every vital piece used to produce the film and will be the higher dollar amount in comparison to the background budget. So principal actor salaries (anyone with a speaking role), equipment and location expenses, special effects, etc would all fall under the principal budget. The background budget would include expenses for extras, supplementary crew members, and anything else having to do with the background production of the film.

Unless you’re working on a studio project, the principal budget will be your primary focus for finding financiers… which brings me to my next point.

Where to find the money for your budget.



You know when you’re watching the credits at the end of a movie and you see all those names listed as “Executive Producer”? Yeah, those are the big wigs with deep pockets that financed the film.

Of course, working on a low budget project, you most likely won’t find an executive producer outside of yourself or granny.

With this in mind, make sure you have a realistic outlook on what you plan to shoot and what you are actually able to shoot. For example, if you live in Wisconsin and your project is about a guy lost in the Amazon, you are probably going to have a hard time finding anywhere that looks like the Amazon in that region. Instead, alter the concept to something like a guy lost in the Siberian wilderness or frozen tundra of Antarctica to ease the stress of finding an appealing location. 

As a writer, I myself have made the mistake of getting lost in the most gripping storyline that I overlook the reality of the filmmaking process. It is a tedious one, and going into it without a firm grasp on knowing exactly what to shoot will make for an insurmountable headache accompanied by overbearing stress.

This leads me to the next topic of this Part I guide to low budget filmmaking – planning.



Like legendary Steelers coach Chuck Noll said, “Pressure is only what you feel when you don’t know what you’re doing.” And if you don’t know what you’re doing when the cameras are ready to roll on the first day of production, you’re definitely going to be under a lot of pressure.

I have come to the realization of being able to effectively coordinate time and people in the same location is essential to running a smooth production. However, this is no easy task when you are working with cast and crew members that most likely are not getting paid.

The best way to get everyone on the same page is by providing a thorough script, holding a read-through of the script with all cast and crew, and altering the script to cater to location accessibility prior to the start date of production.

Notice, I said the word script a lot there, and for good reason.

The script is the backbone of every low, medium, and high dollar project. If the script is not good, your cast will surely not give a good performance. If the script is too long, you surely will exhaust yourself trying to wrap up production. And if the script calls for unattainable locations and special effects, your script is surely to be impossible to shoot.

Notice, I said the word surely a lot there – that’s because a shitty script will surely deliver a shitty film.

It can be difficult to write a script for a low budget film if you despise the realm of print, but do not let this stop you from writing the script yourself. A good rule of thumb when writing a screenplay you plan to produce is to make sure your scene locations are easy to access. If your script calls for a space you end up having to rent, be sure to check the rates of all the places that would suffice.

All in all, when it comes to planning, stick to the script. It’s your production rubric, and without it, you’re sure to fail.

Next, a little pace never hurt anybody, did it?



Of course it didn’t! Keeping a steady pace throughout is essential to ensuring you get everything done you set out to get done. A good way to stay in tune with pace is always accounting for the amount of sunlight remaining in the day. This may sound elementary when it comes to keeping tabs on time, but it’s extremely important to every production.

Light is essential to filmmaking and the position of the sun never lies. Also, the amount of natural light available is a good gauge on how much artificial light will need to be positioned for each scene. And if you’ve ever been on a production set with artificial lighting, you can attest to the amount of time a crew can waste on adjusting light from scene to scene. However, keep time and the use of artificial lighting in realistic perspective. You’re most likely not shooting the second-coming of “Lincoln”, so try and set up for the upcoming scene while the current scene is being shot. 

Another principal to keep in mind when it comes to pacing is – work smart, not hard.

Improvisation will be required – I guarantee it. Whether it be in pre-production or when cameras are rolling, there is going to be something you need to change on the fly. Don’t panic. Don’t get frustrated. It’s all a part of producing a film on a low budget.

You never know, you just might save a couple dollars and shoot an even better scene by switching things up on the fly.



My final tip in this guide is to be mindful of the cast and crew you are working with.

From my personal experiences, I always recommend choosing a production crew who are people that share the same passion and vision for the film as you. It also helps to have at least one other designated producer present to run background or handle the technical side of things. Regardless, producer or not, you should make sure to have a “brain”, or someone knowledgable about equipment on hands at all times.

A proven technician will save you a lot of time, and if you can also find a skilled gaffer, your production is already on the road to stardom. But I will divulge more into the depths of cameras and other equipment for low budget filmmaking in the second part of this guide.

For now, it’s time to try your hand at a script and begin planning your production, just make sure to keep it all within the realm of possibility, and you might just find this whole filming for cheap thing comes a lot easier than anticipated.

Happy Filming!

What A Beast – A Beast At Bay

Written by: Roger Turner Jr

On January 21, 2018, filming for A Beast At Bay commenced along the Gulf Coast of Florida. The events that the crew and I endured during the week-long production were, well, let’s just say it was the most intricate film we’ve ever made.

Have any of you ever read the short story “The Most Dangerous Game”? If you’re unsure, you most likely read it in middle or high school English as I did. The story is about a Russian hunter who owns an island in the Caribbean and hunts castaways that land on the island. A Beast At Bay is an adaptation of “The Most Dangerous Game”, and with a team of five people, it was the first feature film made by UpStream. This production is one I will never forget because the time, energy, and belief we put into this film proved to be worth more than any dollar we spent.

I’ll start from the beginning.

Sunday & Monday (the 21st & 22nd)

This was the first day shooting on location. Our crew consisted of the usual suspects – Salmon (actor), Gary (DP & everything technical), Wade (actor & stills), Tianna (PA & Gary’s girlfriend), and myself (director). The titles in parentheses will change throughout the story (except for Tianna being Gary’s girlfriend, of course), but ultimately, this was the entire crew on set for this film. A Beast At Bay is a full-fledged movie folks. So I’m sure you’re saying, “there’s no way they made a quality film on a week-long production for a feature”.


Our first order of business was securing a sixth-man to the roster. The script called for four actors. We had three. The shortage was due to a friend of ours, who shall remain nameless, notifying us he would be unable to participate the week prior to production. So I reached out to a buddy of mine, Kyle, whom I worked with when I first came to Florida. I remembered he talked about acting in a couple short films, so I figured he would be an enthusiastic addition. But, I needed Kyle today.

We’ll get back to Kyle, don’t worry.

We arrived at Fort De Soto Campgrounds around 5pm. This was our main exterior location and proved to be just the jungle we needed. Cameras rolled at 6pm. We were fighting for more sunlight at 6:30, but we were able to capture our prettiest shot of the night under a purple-ish orange sunset.

However, when the sun went down, the night took an expected but respectfully unexpected turn.

Most of the shots we needed that night did not require light, but we were in pitch black darkness at the campsite. Our only source of light was two LED lights. The lights held strong… for about two hours. We thought it was maybe the knockoff brand batteries we bought for $4 a pack at the campsite. So we made a trip to the 7-11 down the street (the first of two) to get batteries.

It quickly became apparent one light was more reliable than the other.

Not sure how many of you reading this have ever used a camera, but in case none of you have, I’ll let you in on a secret – you need light! If you don’t have light, what the hell are you going to shoot? Darkness, that’s what. The scenes we shot that first night were not difficult scenes to shoot if we would have had a more sufficient light source. To add injury to insult, we also had to pull off a campfire scene with wet firewood. As you can imagine, that’s a near impossible feat.

So we made our second trip to 7-11 for a starter log, charcoal, and lighter fluid.

We used the materials from the gas station to get a good fire going. It lasted maybe 15 minutes. We were able to get maybe half a take from it. By this time, it was 4am. All of us were tired and aggravated. Tianna was the only sensible one of the crew. She was asleep in the car. And by the end of Dylan’s 12th take (he was pissed after take 2), I tossed off the director’s hat and threw on the producer cap.

“Fuck it. Wade, we’re going to use your car lights.”

And that’s exactly what we did. On camera, it looked natural. Still, that doesn’t excuse our obvious rookie mistake here – poor lighting. And just when we thought things couldn’t go any worse, our visitors made their appearance. What visitors, you say?


They were coming from all sides. Left. Right. Down trees. Under trees. On the way to the bathroom. They were every damn where. Of course, we had food, which is what made our campsite the hot spot for the night. They would run away when we would flash a light on them, but those things were fucking relentless!

Luckily, no one was bitten or attacked by a raccoon during the production of this film.

Promptly at 6am, the coons vanished and the sun began to rise. Only Gary and I managed to power through all the way into morning free of sleep. When it was time to head to another part of the park, the tiredness finally began to set in. We managed to get a couple more shots done in the morning, but a 14-hour first day had gotten the best of us. Our goal was to get 20-25% of the film done that first night and we did just that.

And still, no word from Kyle.

Monday fused with Sunday. So once we departed from the park, Monday was unanimously voted a much-needed rest day. However, I was determined to get a sixth on board. I had one wild card left to play. It was Luis, a good friend of mine and a native of Saint Petersburg but 100% Venezuelan. He wasn’t the first choice, obviously, but if Kyle continued to stay ghost, Ol’ Lu would fit the part.

Tuesday (the 23rd)

On Tuesday, we transitioned to our second location, an equestrian ranch in Odessa, Florida. The property had an old-timey ranch style home that we rented through Airbnb, as well as an abundance of mossy trees, authentic wood exterior and interior walls, a useful cabana, and of course, horses. Wade and I were able to tour the ranch before production and our first night there was what I proclaimed a “transition day”. Instead of cameras rolling, we staged the set for the next morning’s scenes.

Again I reached out to Kyle – again no definitive response. I mentioned to Lu we could use him on-camera Thursday, a day he had planned to visit the set anyway. He said he was up for it if we needed him, and that made going to sleep Tuesday night a little easier.

Wednesday (the 24th)

Around 9am Wednesday, cameras were rolling as planned. We shot our first interior scene, but not before I discovered my talents as a hair stylist. Wade’s character is a 1930s Russian aristocrat and although he did have a pretty fantastic mustache going, his hair was all fucked up. I had never styled anyone’s hair before, but that didn’t stop me. In less than 10 minutes, Wade went from looking like a weirdo with a mustache to the menacing villain we had all hoped for.

The morning shoot proved to be quite efficient, but there was still a lot more to be done and we needed Lu or Kyle to give us a yes or a no. By now, the rest of the crew knew the struggle I was having getting an answer. They were all antsy, but I knew if neither Kyle or Lu could make it, I had no choice.

I’d have to play the part.

Thursday (the 25th)

While Gary and Dylan managed to knock out a few scenes during the day without me on Wednesday, I gathered a list of wardrobe items from Goodwill for Thursday night. We were anxious for this night in particular because this was the night of the two big dialogue scenes. I was feeling good. We all were feeling good! Cameras would be rolling at 9:30pm. Lu was coming. We knock these two scenes out and it’s smooth sailing for the next couple of nights.


If there is one piece of advice I would like novice and professionals to take away from reading this, it’s to always allocate time for ill-advised re-takes. That shit is sure to make its presence at some point. Whether it was actor’s slipping up on lines or tweaking lights, we ended up shooting until 4 in the morning because of countless re-takes. In addition to the numerous re-takes, Lu nor Kyle showed up. So after we filmed the last take, the realist in me emerged.

“I’ll play the part. But tomorrow… tomorrow is going to be a long day.”

And it was.

Friday and Saturday (the 26th and 27th)

A 17-hour day to be exact. Yes, we did sleep. Yes, it was rough. Yes, we finished the film. And yes, we would all do it again. Friday was long, but Saturday marked the finish line. Production on the film was, for the most part, done. All that remained was montage drone footage that would be filmed at a later date. Gary and Tianna departed. Eventually, Salmon. And that was it.

A Beast At Bay was complete.

Reflecting on the film, I realized what we pulled off wasn’t perfect and I’m sure not the first time its been done. Nonetheless, there was a lot learned in accomplishing such a feat. The most important takeaway I garnered from the production of A Beast At Bay is the intricacies of making a low budget film. Prior to the shooting, I researched the best low budget films to date and the budget for each. The Indie flick El Mariachi is a good representation of the type of budget we were working with, as well as the type of response we wish to receive.

There are no tricks of the trade I used that I wish to keep a personal secret from all you aspiring filmmakers out there. So listen close.

First, the more abundant or experienced the crew working on a project, the more room for error. This may seem like common sense, but I’ve worked on sets with over a dozen crew members and endured long production days, and I’ve done projects like A Beast At Bay. The difference other than the number of people is an abundance of crew members means there are people specializing in one area (i.e. hair stylist, lighting technicians, boom pole guy, etc.). While not everybody may be an expert in their assigned duties, the amount of hands-on-deck ultimately makes it easier on the director. Instead of worrying about squeezing in the two big interior scenes in one night, re-takes will be more manageable with more people on set because the director can focus on pinpointing what is needed to make the scene as perfect as possible.

This brings me to my second piece of advice – don’t ever shoot a feature film in a week’s span unless you plan to be working morning, day, and night. I’m talking 40 hours of sleep (and that may be too many) for the entire week. I wanted the crew to be working at their full potential but I also knew it was unrealistic to think we could take two days off without sacrificing sleep later on in the week. Although we ended up getting the all the shots we needed, we paid a restless price. So if you’re planning to shoot a feature, I don’t care what you hear out of the big time Hollywood productions. If you’re reading this, you’re most likely not there. So trust me when I say, be sure to get adequate sleep throughout the production because there’s always tomorrow.

Lastly, don’t worry about the odds. If film is what you love, go at it with everything you’ve got and tune out any and all doubt. We filmed this feature on a Panasonic Lumix GH4 4K camera, two lenses (zoom and prime), used two handheld LED lights, a shotgun microphone, and a DJI Ronin stabilizer for most of the shots. Overall, our budget came out to a little over $5,000 when you include travel, location access, wardrobe, and everything else that was purchased in order to make the film. The budget for El Mariachi was $7,000 in 1992 and Martin Brest produced Ben Affleck’s worst movie to date, Gigli, for $75 Million in 2003. This goes to show the budget for a film is secondary.

It’s the heart of the people that matter most.

Check out some of these great moments from behind the scenes!

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