Behind every Blockbuster film you see on the silver screen is one thing in common: funding from deep pockets - and lots of it. Every year, tens of thousands of scripts and film concepts are created. What determines which of those scripts become movies is not necessarily how brilliant the scripts are, but access to the money required to make it happen - which usually comes in the form of private investors. However, many incredible filmmakers never get the chance to bring their movies to life on the big screen because they lack these connections and therefore, the financial resources. That's where Mogul Productions comes in: a new, decentralized film financing platform that crowdsources NFT to give everyone a voice in which movies get funded and produced.
The idea came from the story behind Deadpool, the incredibly popular film starring Ryan Reynolds which did a whopping $782 million in the box office. When Marvel didn't want to create an R-rated movie, Reynolds took matters into his own hands and leaked a trailer of his vision for Deadpool on YouTube. Fans loved it and went crazy, which left Marvel no choice but to create the movie: the proof of demand and enthusiasm was there.
However, not all filmmakers have access to large, sweeping audiences in the way that A-list celebrities like Ryan Reynolds do. And, the truth is that there are many valuable and important films that never see the light of day because decision makers don't see the value that audience members would, or simply because this money is often behind closed doors. This is where Mogul comes in.
What Mogul Productions Does
There are a number of reasons why it's critical to level the playing field of film financing. For one, many films truly have the capacity to do well. These independent decision makers - such as the private investors or wealthy family offices - don't always have a pulse on how a commercial audience will react to a movie. And while they like to dig into their deep pockets to fund films, they're still somewhat removed from the entire process.
"Investors don't get access to the information needed to make an informed decision, making it difficult to conduct any real due diligence," explained Gorav Seth, Co-Chair of Film Financing at Mogul. "It is also challenging for investors to know if there is commercial viability to a project, whether the budgets are inflated and if the capital being raised is being properly accounted for and deployed.
"As a result, it is extremely difficult to make an informed decision or trust the principals behind the film without possessing in-depth industry knowledge or having a trusted party that's on-the-ground, managing the day-to-day aspects to the production," Gorav noted.
This is where the blockchain dynamic of Mogul comes into play: it's decentralized, and provides transparency on the funding behind each film. It gives a voice to those who are often voiceless because of their lack of deep pockets, and promotes greater trust in an industry that typically has some nefarious business dealings. It's simply a better investment for investors, too: the film's performance in the box office is easier to gage by its popularity before creation, rather than going in blind. And, investors know exactly how all the financing is spent, as well as where it comes from.
The platform aggregates aligned investors who are also emotionally invested in the film's success. It incentivizes and gamifies the audience, which also creates a groundswell of support for the film and its promotion.
Mogul's First Movie
Mogul isn't just conceptual. They have successfully funded their first movie: Bonded, a human trafficking drama. It's a true story about a teenager from Mexico with big dreams of becoming a soccer star, who is smuggled across the border and sold to a Los Angeles sweatshop. The director of Bonded is incredibly passionate about this story and this film, and Mogul enabled it to come to life - whereas otherwise, it could have been years of the search for a private investor to believe in the film.
Mogul has also mastered the craft of appealing to and incentivizing the audience through the creations of STARS tokens. This gamified element of the platform grants Mogul users the ability to redeem tokens on exclusive content, such as behind the scenes photos and video clips and insider access to the film's production. This is a win-win for Mogul users: not only do they get to actively participate in the decisions on which films should be created, but they get to feel connected to the film's production process in a way that other moviegoers don't. After all, they're part of the reason the movie was able to be produced.
Looking onward and upwards, the Mogul team hopes to empower the production of many other worthy films in the upcoming years. On the heels of Bonded's release, Mogul just announced a film showcase for a fan-vote on their second movie.
As part of the showcase, three films were selected out of more than 500 submissions to compete for votes from Mogul users and be selected as the second movie to receive financing. The vote, which is blockchain-based, is set to take place from August 5th through the 19th. Profiles of the films are now viewable at my.mogulproductions.com.
This contest further demonstrates the perpetuation and democratization of an industry we all participate in as viewers, and empowerment for the screenwriters and directors who believe so ardently in their films.