The Bureau of Creative Works wants to increase the value of short films as an art form and pay artists to make them. Their goal is to give 12 filmmakers $1500-$3000 each to make a short film. Also to house a subscription-based platform for filmmakers & film lovers to watch the shorts as they come out over the course of 12 months.
Founded by independent-filmmaker-duo Erica Hampton and Mike Ambs, the Bureau has a grant submission for this year’s two remaining filmmaker spots, and a Kickstarter campaign for subscriptions. If you subscribe on Kickstarter, the Bureau waives the submission fee of the grant, and you get all twelve films to boot.
Artists shouldn’t be making art on the side, it should be their job.
We need to re-train audiences who’ve grown used to the free
YouTube model that shorts are worth paying for.
— Director, Don Hertzfeldt
Filmmakers spend $10k,$ 20k, $80k of our own money, that we don’t have, to produce our work. We spend thousands submitting to festivals, we spend thousands just to hand over our work to distributors who often don’t take the time or energy to promote what we’ve worked so hard to create. The BUREAU is the opposite of the this system, in every sense – and we hope that filmmakers will become a part of the community, to help it grow it, to help guide it, and to help make a unified statement that *this* is how things should work. We shouldn’t settle for a system that constantly scrapes off the top. We hope that people will respond to what we’re doing – we think it can have a real impact, not just in terms of opportunity for the 12 filmmakers each year, but a real impact on the audiences perception of films and their value.
The Bureau looking for the right people to fill out their film grant application? Filmmakers with a point of view, who will use this opportunity to experiment in their craft. A large part of their decision will come from looking at your previous work. The Bureau is just getting started and they have big plans for the future. From Mike and Erica:
We have such big plans for The BUREAU! We are working hard to grow our audience, our partners and resources for participating filmmakers, and to continue to provide small production budgets for 12 films each year. Depending on how we grow, possibly more per year! We will steadfastly stand by our goal of providing a low pressure environment where filmmakers are free to experiment and create work that might otherwise never be made.