New Forest Film Co exists to make film and TV better. And we don’t just mean making great films and TV series, we mean making film and TV in a better way.
The way the film and TV industry commonly makes decisions is too narrow. On the one hand, there is a lack of diversity in who decides which stories are told and who gets to tell a story. And on the other, multi-million dollar investments are made into stories that audiences never wanted or cared for, or into productions that could and should have been far better.
We think there’s a way to do things differently.
It’s about taking risks, of course, and to do that we need to consider a much wider set of possible stories, ways of telling them, and processes for making them, whilst at the same time being able to assess the risk that the outcome will not be good. And by good we don’t simply mean how commercial success, we mean how well the creative ambitions of the story were realised, how moving, how meaningful, how worthwhile, how astonishing it is.
And it’s also about opening up the creative process from beginning to end to feedback, ideas and scrutiny not just by a small number of distant executives, but by the story’s potential audience and the full production team, whose ideas and input should be sought all the way through to the film or TV series being discovered and shown.
What exactly are we doing to make film and TV production better? Four things:
First, we run an Agile Process. We use the processes of Silicon Valley start-ups to organise our production teams, creating film and TV series prototypes, testing them with audiences, iterating and improving them and testing again until they’re good enough to make. And we’re constantly looking for ways to improve ourselves as individuals and as a team.
Second, we embrace Tech Innovation. We’re not interested in using tech for tech’s sake, but in using technology to solve big problems. We use technology to make prototypes before major investment is made. We use technology to assess how audiences think and feel about our stories. We use technology to reduce the production cost and time and to deliver stories in astonishing new ways.
Third, we enable Word of Mouth discovery of our stories. We invite our audiences to be with us every step of the way from conception to premiere. There is no better way for a film or TV series to be discovered than via a recommendation from a trusted friend, and so aim to create stories that earn their social success.
Finally, we believe in what we call Talent Equity. It’s the idea that all talent working on our films and TV series in all roles, senior and junior, young and old, should have a share in both the proceeds and the responsibilities of production. Put simply, we think that everyone is incentivised to do a great job if they share in the rewards of their work.