The Shadow Gang

The Shadow Gang Transmedia Entertainment Studio The Shadow Gang is a new breed of entertainment studio that creates original media experiences using ‘Galahad,’ the studio’s proprietary, turnkey multi-platform distribution engine.

With Galahad, The Shadow Gang helps content owners to expand distribution channels, build and engage new audiences, and realize new revenue potential. The Shadow Gang not only builds interactive, multi-platform experiences for partners in film, television, publishing, gaming, major branding and more, the studio also develops and produces original content across genres, platforms, and devices. The Shadow Gang has offices in Los Angeles, New York and Chicago. For more information, visit www.theshadowgang.com and follow the company on Facebook and Twitter.

Mission: The Shadow Gang’s focus is to disrupt the modern media business model by redefining the way audiences are cultivated distribution channels are leveraged, money is made, and how stories are told. Right now, the business model for media is inefficient and mostly ineffective. The process of high-risk, boom or bust is not the exception, but the rule. Our goal is to demonstrate how we are leading the new way of developing and proliferating media toward increased profitability and success.

Operating as usual

07/30/2020
What I Learned From Interviewing 2192 Filmmakers And How It Can Help Your Filmmaking Career

WHAT I LEARNED FROM INTERVIEWING 2192 FILMMAKERS AND HOW IT CAN HELP YOUR CAREER

As a showrunner as well as a consultant for working filmmakers, I talk to creators every day, all day. Throughout any given period of time, there is a constant stream of filmmakers and storytellers coming through my now “virtual” door. If they are new to me, I ask them the same questions;

- What do you make?
- What’s the thing that keeps you up at night about being an indie filmmaker?
- What does your perfect day as a creator look like?
- What is your process for turning a stranger into a fan of your work?
- What is your process for turning a stranger into a buyer of your work?

…and so on.

I ask these questions, because it helps me to understand how they perceive their own work, what their current career situation is, where they want to go and what difficulty they’re having getting there. I ask them this whether I’m thinking of hiring them or whether they are wanting to hire me as a consultant. Also, by asking the same questions to everyone and hearing their answers, I have been able to see trends in where filmmakers feel stuck and what their life looks like when they get unstuck.

It’s given me a front row view of filmmaker psychology and that has helped my own career immensely. I’m always very grateful and surprised at their ability to articulate what it feels like to be an indie filmmaker.

So, in this video, I unpack what I’ve learned and offer some solutions to some of the most common problems that face creators today. Give it a watch and if you feel like answering any of those questions in the comments, I’d love to hear where you are and where you want to see yourself in the next year or so.

https://bit.ly/33bQUIS

What I Learned From Interviewing 2192 Filmmakers And How It Can Help Your Filmmaking Career Link to pitch tool: https://webseriesacademy.teachable.com/p/pitc...

06/19/2020
6 Ways To Improve Your Filmmaker Bio That Gets The Attention Of Distributors

VIDEO: 6 Ways To Improve Your Filmmaker Bio That Gets The Attention Of Distributors

I kinda get heated a bit here. I’m trying to keep my cool, but nothing makes me more frustrated than when I see a bio from a filmmaker that makes that person sound like they’re running for the Nobel Prize and that they can shoot rainbows out of their ass. It’s even more frustrating to have seen so many just like this (I mean a ton).

I don’t know if there is some school teaching this puffery, but as someone who hires a lot of directors, writer, producers, DPs, etc., I see my fair share of bios and the majority have many of the same things in common that make it virtually impossible to hire that person. That’s why I had to make this video. Seriously, after I read this particular filmmaker’s bio, I got so aggravated I just had to sit down and vent.

In this video I cover the down-and-dirty do’s and don’ts of writing a bio and show you how to write one that gets the attention of distributor, execs and producers. By the end, you’ll be able to write a bio for your portfolio site or cover letter that puts you in a position to be taken seriously by the people who can have real impact on your career… the ones known as “decision makers”.

So, watch the video and I’d love to hear whether you think your bio is effective or needs some love. Feel free to either leave a comment or DM me. I’d love to hear what your experience is.

https://bit.ly/3dcrR9H

This video is about the 6 Ways To Improve Your Filmmaker Bio That Gets The Attention Of Distributors I kinda go off a bit here. I’m trying to keep my cool, b...

06/05/2020
How To Get The RIGHT Investor For Your Film

We got $2.5M for our film from the WRONG investor and it literally almost killed me. Then we got way less for the next project from the RIGHT investor and we ended up selling that project to Sam Raimi at Sony.

In this video I cover:

-How to identify the right investor
-Which questions to ask them that close the deal
-Which investors you need to run away from while screaming at the top of your lungs
-How to negotiate with investors when you do get in the room with them
-Where to find ‘right-fit” investors for your project

In the end, the right investor can be the difference between making a film that people actually see or making a very expensive paper weight.

I’d love to hear your investor stories. Write a comment or DM me letting me know about your investor horror stories and investor victories as a way of helping other creators walk a smother path.

https://bit.ly/2AMu2mM

How To Get The RIGHT Investor For Your Film We got $2.5M for our film from the WRONG investor and it literally almost killed me. Then we got way less for the...

05/19/2020
Why Some Filmmakers Succeed And Some Don't

VIDEO: Why Some Filmmaker Succeed And Others Don't

I might get some crap for this video. My wife told me not to put it out, but I had to say this.

This is, more-or-less, a call to action for any filmmaker who finds themselves on the outside of the industry, looking in. This is for the filmmaker tired of going from gig to gig and the filmmaker that finds themselves making work they never wanted to be known for. Most of all, this is for that filmmaker who is tired of making amazing work nobody sees.

This video dives into the essential habits successful filmmakers have and some of the pitfalls filmmakers should avoid when seriously pursuing a career as a professional creator.

Especially now, filmmakers who fail to do certain things are going to have a long and rocky road to success as content buyers and distributors get ever more conservative in who they let in.

The current crisis has led content buyers towards buying from and working with a very select group of people in an effort to mitigate the risks associated with producing original content.

But there are things indie filmmakers and web series producers can do and I go on to outline the key strategies you can take now to ensure your place in the industry after the dust settles.

I’ve also included a link to a downloadable guide in the video’s description that will give you a useful toolkit to help you navigate the coming weirdness in the industry.

As always, keep creating. Leave a comment and let me know how you're reimagining your path forward in your filmmaking career during the current crisis.

https://bit.ly/2XaBv70

This video is about why some filmmaker succeed and some don't. DOWNLOAD FREE GUIDE: https://site.alexlemay.com/noagent I might get a lot of crap for this vid...

VIDEO: 5 Reason Why You Should And Shouldn't Make Your Film Right Nowhttps://youtu.be/gNOEM0ZoCg8Given the current situa...
05/07/2020

VIDEO: 5 Reason Why You Should And Shouldn't Make Your Film Right Now

https://youtu.be/gNOEM0ZoCg8
Given the current situation and the fact that Hollywood is in the process of losing almost $20 Billion dollars this year (which means they'll get even more conservative in their buying decisions), I'd like to lay out why you should make your next film/web series and some critical reasons to hold off.

In this video, I’ll unpack:

-What distributors ARE buying right now
-What is happening with film festivals this year
-The one criterion that will differentiate people who will sell their film/web series vs. the people who won’t.

At the end, I'll give you the definitive answer as to whether you should or shouldn’t be making your film or web series right now.

https://youtu.be/gNOEM0ZoCg8

04/20/2020
How To Convince Studios to Give You Money For Your Film

VIDEO: How To Convince A Studio to Give You Money For Your Film

I get email after email asking me how I convince studios to cough up money for projects. One of the biggest frustrations for filmmakers is how to pay for their vision.

In this video, I show you how to first, get in the room to pitch them your idea and second, how to convince them to pay for your project. Also, I outline one very important shift filmmakers need to make when reaching out and developing relationships with decision-makers in the film/TV and web series industry.

My inbox and LinkedIn are filled with creators sending me their scripts and series bibles asking me to read them and give them feedback. In essence and with no context, I’m being asked to devote two or three hours, away from my own business or my work on studio projects to aimlessly dive into a project for a person I’ve never met. If I did this for every project sent to me, I’d never work again.

The same goes for busy and usually overwhelmed studio execs, agents and development professionals. They have a pile of scripts they need to read for clients and the chances of them being able to take time away from that are slim. If they did make a practice of that, they wouldn’t have a career.

Now, please know, I’m not saying I or they are too important to not take those that reach out us seriously, I’m just saying there’s a better way.

So, watch this video where I lay out a simple and effective step-by-step path to gaining the attention of hard-to-reach buyers. If you watch to the end, I reveal the one question I ask that gets them to give away their secret for how they buy content and how you can use it to get them to take notice of you and your project.

https://youtu.be/rp0w1-Fjcuw

This video is about How To Convince A Studio to Give You Money For Your Film Book a free 45 minute strategy call: https://site.alexlemay.com/call Instagram: ...

03/27/2020
How To Build An Audience For Your Film In Difficult Times

VIDEO: How To Build An Audience For Your Film In These Difficult Times

It’s tough enough to build an audience for your indie film in the best of times let alone in a time of complete chaos.

I’ve been getting email after email from filmmakers saying things like “I’ve finished shooting my film/web series and now this. What do I do to get people to see it when so much of their attention is elsewhere”? They’re asking whether they should wait to release. They’re asking whether anyone will even watch.

In this video, I break down simple audience building techniques that will get your film in front of audiences who are already looking for the kind of films and web series’ you make.

Don’t forget, people are running out of Netflix shows to watch. By now, all that’s left is obscure World War II documentaries and Australian house flipping shows. People are scouring the internet for new and engaging content like yours and this video will show you how to find them, get them to pay attention and get them to see you as a premium source for their entertainment in these very difficult times.

As always, feel free to DM me or leave a comment if you have any questions and I promise I’ll get back to you. Be safe and stay healthy. Much love!

https://youtu.be/JsGeUiikSac

This video is about How To Build An Audience For Your Film In These Difficult Times It’s tough enough to build an audience for your indie film in the best of...

03/16/2020
Coronavirus, Your Production Business, Your Filmmaking Career And What To Do Now!

VIDEO: Coronavirus, Your Production Business, Your Filmmaking Career And What To Do Now

I don’t want to be alarmist, but the entire production world is shutting down. I am getting calls, emails, texts from all over the production and filmmaking world with panicked requests for what to do now. Most of us work in the gig economy and are literally looked at as expendable in the eyes of clients, studios and production companies, so it is imperative that filmmakers start building new revenue streams that don’t rely on selling your time for money. Rather, it’s time to start selling your knowledge and leveraging online revenue sources.

I’ve been asked my many production and filmmaking professionals to make a video on tangible ways to keep afloat during this difficult time.

So, in this video, I outline several ways I have been able to diversify my income so that when unexpected events happen, I’m able to ride out the storm.

These are simple things you can do, today, that will help you smooth the path without the need to leave your home or build a team or rely on others to have your best interests in mind.

Let me be very honest, this situation is going to decimate the filmmaking world, so it is essential we use our best asset, our creativity and our ability to unite others around a common idea.

If you’re experiencing anything like the people I’m hearing from recently, I am here with advice and practical info for any who need it. Don’t hesitate to reach out to me for any reason.

We’ll get through this. If ever there was a community who knows how to solve difficult problems, it’s filmmakers.

Watch this video and keep an eye out for more to come. I will be regularly posting with how to’s, tips, tricks and hacks in an effort to help anyone who finds them useful and is willing to take action around them.

https://youtu.be/FiotFqEtORE

Coronavirus, Your Production Business, Your Filmmaking Career And What To Do Now I don’t want to be alarmist, but the entire production world is shutting dow...

03/16/2020
Coronavirus, Your Production Business, Your Filmmaking Career And What To Do Now!

VIDEO: Coronavirus, Your Production Business, Your Filmmaking Career And What To Do Now

I don’t want to be alarmist, but the entire production world is shutting down. I am getting calls, emails, texts from all over the production and filmmaking world with panicked requests for what to do now. Most of us work in the gig economy and are literally looked at as expendable in the eyes of clients, studios and production companies, so it is imperative that filmmakers start building new revenue streams that don’t rely on selling your time for money. Rather, it’s time to start selling your knowledge and leveraging online revenue sources.

I’ve been asked my many production and filmmaking professionals to make a video on tangible ways to keep afloat during this difficult time.

So, in this video, I outline several ways I have been able to diversify my income so that when unexpected events happen, I’m able to ride out the storm.

These are simple things you can do, today, that will help you smooth the path without the need to leave your home or build a team or rely on others to have your best interests in mind.

Let me be very honest, this situation is going to decimate the filmmaking world, so it is essential we use our best asset, our creativity and our ability to unite others around a common idea.

If you’re experiencing anything like the people I’m hearing from recently, I am here with advice and practical info for any who need it. Don’t hesitate to reach out to me for any reason.

We’ll get through this. If ever there was a community who knows how to solve difficult problems, it’s filmmakers.

Watch this video and keep an eye out for more to come. I will be regularly posting with how to’s, tips, tricks and hacks in an effort to help anyone who finds them useful and is willing to take action around them.

https://youtu.be/FiotFqEtORE

Coronavirus, Your Production Business, Your Filmmaking Career And What To Do Now I don’t want to be alarmist, but the entire production world is shutting dow...

02/26/2020
How To Make A Pitch Deck For Your Film That Gets Distributors To Say 'YES'

VIDEO: How To Make A Pitch Deck For Your film That Gets Distributors To Say 'YES'!

In it I'll walk you through a step-by-step pitch deck structure that I used to sell over $12M worth of web series content in just over 4 years. https://youtu.be/MzLfGgDmS7Q

You’ll be able to Download the pitch deck template I use in this video by clicking the link I’ve provided in the YouTube video description.

Over the years I’ve developed a pretty air-tight system for getting buyers to be able to wrap their heads around the show/series/film idea I’m pitching them as well as to be able to get them to say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ fairly quickly.

One mistake that I see a lot of content creators making when they come in to pitch to me is that they over pitch. They will come in with a three-ring binder with WAY too much information. They are very well designed and color coded and have backstory of characters down to what they like for breakfast and their relationship with their childhood puppy.

All that information is useful for when you make the project, but for selling, it’s overkill and most buyers will throw your beautiful piece of work in the trash once you leave. Sad but true, and I know this because I did it when I was first starting out. My guess is it’s an attempt to show buyers how prepared and dedicated we are. The best way to get their attention is:

KEEP IT SHORT

You’ll need to create two pitch documents.

1. A One Sheet – a one sheet is just that; it’s a one-page snapshot of your project.

It Contains:
Project Title
Genre

-The Project Logline – in two sentence you need to cover: who are the main characters? What happens to them? What is the most important moment of the script? How does the story end? What psychological changes occur by the end. All in two sentences.

A good example and a classic is Shakespeare’s ROMEO & JULIET: In medieval Italy, a young man falls in love with the daughter of a sworn enemy. They elope with tragic consequences.

-Synopsis: A one paragraph, more detailed explanation of the same things the logline covers. One exception – don’t give away the ending – leave them wanting to ask you questions. If they do, you’re in a good place

-The Talent: List the key onscreen and off-screen talent. These are called Stakeholders.

-Shooting Location: Keep it simple – A Farmhouse or Soundstage will do.

-Other Projects You’ve Done: They may not like this project, but they might like you. This will be at the end of your more expanded pitch deck too.

2. The Pitch Deck - This is usually a well-designed PowerPoint or Keynote presentation - 10 pages, MAX.

Includes:

All the same sections as the One-Sheet – but with a little more detail (don’t go crazy).

-Series Arc (If you’re pitching a series) - a HIGH-LEVEL description of the first three seasons. No more than 2 sentences each. Buyers want to know the concept isn’t going to burn out after one season.

-Why Audience Will Love It- This is a short paragraph that shows you understand the network or platform’s audience. This gets them excited if you do it right. Literally title this section Why Your Audience Will Love It.

Come in with more than one idea – and be prepared to pitch them as well as you’re pitching the idea that got you in the room. The reason for this, and this happened to me when I was pitching a big studio, is that if they don’t like your idea or it isn’t right for them, they will always say, “Don’t like it. What else you got?" If you have nothing, you probably won’t pitch to them again.

Make sure your series/film can play at multiple outlets - If your series/film can only play at HGTV, it is most likely too niche (too narrow). The rule is, it should be able to be pitched to at least three outlets but preferably five. The reason being is that if you create a series that only gets one bite at the apple and they pass, you’ve just spent months of your time for nothing.

Make sure it has a SOCIAL element - Almost every outlet/distributor wants to know that you have an audience. If not, then they want to know that you have access to one.

In the end, there is isn’t a document you can make that does all the heavy sales initiatives it takes to sell your work, but having short, fun, and easy to understand pitch material really helps. Most importantly, If they do like your pitch, these documents will help them “sell it up” to their boss(es). https://youtu.be/MzLfGgDmS7Q

This video is about How To Make A Pitch Deck for your film. Get Distributors To Say 'YES'! In it I'll walk you through a step-by-step pitch deck structure th...

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