Filmmaking on a Budget: Cheap Movie Subject Ideas

The bills are due, there is no food in the refrigerator and you wonder why film was chosen as a career in the first place. There are opportunities announced everyday, but there is nothing new to show film festival programmers, distributors and that Restaurant owner who invested in your last feature that failed during its one week run in New York.

If any of this sounds familiar, you may be one of the many indie filmmakers staring at the wall and sobbing about how you cannot make another film. In this second part of Filmmaking on a Budget: Cheap Movie Subject Ideas, you will learn how to make more films with cheaper subjects. It can be done, even if you don’t have a lot of money.

Older People

This may not be true for all, but many old people are boring. Fortunately for you, that is not their fault. Old people are this way because they are bored themselves. If they had something new to do, seniors would have more to talk about. Locate an old person who is bored and you have found a very cheap subject to help make an indie film. You may even be able to create a series of films if he or she is willing to star in them. There are also tons of seniors who have done a lot throughout their life and may have dozens of stories to tell. Find these individuals and make a documentary.


If you are tech savvy, this is a very cheap subject idea for your next indie film. However, the most popular animation software packages are not cheap. This creates an uneven trade off. There are ways to get around that one problem. If you already have animation software, there is nothing standing in your way. Other ways to create animated films are through cheaper software packages and online third party features.

Second Life and some online avatar websites provide members with the ability to create characters that move. This means that you have a great opportunity to make an indie film without a lot of cash. If you are still on the fence about this movie idea, the article “Animation: Facts for Filmmakers to Consider” includes coverage on why this is a worthwhile subject. More enhanced and professional programs cost from $300 up to $5,000. The most inexpensive animation programs that many people use include Poser, Animation Studio and Toon Boom. They are all under $300.


If you have cool art sculptures laying around in the garage or storage bin, they can be used to make your indie film. This may seem amateurish, but the result will depend on your creativity and technical skills. Some indie filmmakers may turn their nose up at making films with sculptures, clay or other unusual materials. You can separate yourself from this group and consider using static items as the subject of your film. Consider this, while one filmmaker titles one idea as being mediocre, another person is uploading their recent flick to Youtube. The one who has something done is further along than those who do not have any films to show for themselves.

Many filmmakers are living paycheck to paycheck and working second rate jobs to pay bills. Just how broke are you? While filmmaking can be fun, debt is not. The article “Debt Management Tips for the Broke and Unemployed” provides great tips on making sure that you do not continue on a downward path to bankruptcy before becoming the next Spielberg or Coppola.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *