Making an Indie Film Pitch Deck is quite simple once you have completed your business plan. Much like the Executive Summary of a Movie Business Plan, the pitch deck is completed after the detailed work is done and is meant to be a high level overview of your project.
When first approaching investors and producers, you can't very well send them 40 pages of business plan, financial projections, the script or any combination of materials that would take someone a week to review. You want your film pitch deck to be a 7-10 minute read that compels your potential film investors to ask for further details about your project. The indie film pitch should make a strong case for both the financial and creative aspects of your film.
Indie Film Pitch Deck Template Example
Our Indie Film Pitch Deck Template has proven time and again to impress interested potential investors and have them ask for more details on the project. As we have been creating these decks since 2002, we know what works and what doesn't. We have taken feedback from every meeting we've attended, and the feedback from our filmmakers, to continually craft an updated deck we know provides just the right information in just the right way.
Many times, investors don't get further than our summary slide (our pièce de résistance) before asking for the full business plan or script. Some of our filmmakers also add professional graphic design to their deck, to make it more visually impressive, however, we have seen this actual template work just as well without more design. How much you invest in artwork will depend on your audience and budget.
The pitch deck should have the following included:
Confidentiality, Disclousure and Risk Statements.
A WOW Summary Slide - a one page overview of the creative, financial projections, investment opportunity and target audience. Basically, a one page summary of everything that is important to your investors. Just enough information to entice them to ask for additional details, like your financial projections, the investment offer, business plan and/or script.
The Project - A creative overview of your logline, story and message with complementary visuals.
Management - A page on your management team (Who are you? Why should we trust you with our money to make this film?)
Market and Audience - who are you targeting, ages, genders, buying habits, social media habits, has this audience proven past film successes?
Comparable Films - past film records similar to yours in terms of budget and genre
Budget Top Sheet - high level expenses
Your Film Projections - high level P&L (profit and loss) based on Low, Medium and High revenue scenarios
Next steps and how to contact you
Optional slides, that might further your pitch for those with a Hollywood background include:
Visual representations of the film - background and set imagery
Casting - images of the characters as you see them
Investor recoupment waterfall
FilmProposals Indie Film Pitch Deck Template
Our Indie Film Pitch Deck Template has proven time and again to impress interested potential investors. We have worked with filmmkers on these pitches for over 18 years, so we know what works. We incorporate what we learn after every investor meeting, including objections, suggestions and feedback, directly from film investors. Our pitch deck is in Powerpoint, however you can do yours in Powerpoint, Keynote, Canva, etc. It doesn’t matter what program you use - the important thing the is message and how you communicate with investors.
NEW! Documentary Business Plan & Documentary Pitch Deck
FilmPropoals is thrilled to offer help to documentary producers looking for investors, by enhancing our Film Fundraising toolkits to address the specific needs of documentarians. The highlight is a unique Documentary Business Plan Template included in all of our Film Financing Toolkits and Bundles. Much of the Documentary Business Plan is just like that of our narrative Film Business Plan Template, however, we've also done some major custom work to specifically highlight why documentaries are a great investment and how to best showcase your documentary to investors:
Documentary Business Plan Template - this new template is completely redone to focus only on documentary films. Recent successes, emerging documentary trends, streaming and studio deals, distribution patterns, audience statistics, revenue generated for sample films and much more. When did Docs become profitable and start selling for $5M or $10M at festivals? We lay it all out for you...
Documentary Pitch Deck - while our pitch deck template can be used for any type of film, you will use your business plan research to ensure the deck showcases your documentary as a worthy investment opportunity
Financial Projections/ Comparable Films - our custom database and custom financial projections flow seamlessly for both documentaries and narrative films
Following is an article written by a guest author on the FilmProposals site. We do not necessarily agree with all of his opinions and have seen much proof to the contrary. Examples of statements with which we do not agree include, "very few film investors will write a check before reading your script," "don't be afraid to make the text small if you have to," and "the whole point is to get them to read the script."
As a matter of fact, the Wall Street Journal tells film investors, "...don't worry too much about the script. You don't even need to read it, since a good business plan should include a one-page synopsis of the story line." This article, How to Finance Your Film Production, states "you need to make creating a viable and realistic business plan your first priority. Many filmmakers create an outline business plan first, and then find a script that matches what they think they can raise." We at FilmProposals think the purpose of a business plan and pitch deck targeted towards investors outside the industry are to get people to invest in your production, not read your script.
What you put in your pitch deck should be targeted to exactly your audience and whether or not they have previous film making or investing experience.
You probably already know that when trying to get your indie film financed, you need to have a quick pitch ready at all times. Importantly, you should have a short elevator pitch and a longer, more detailed, one worked out and ready for delivery at a moment's notice. The reason you need to know how to make an indie film pitch deck is simple...
If you are truly putting in the effort to get your film financed, you will be meeting with film investors, talking to people who know film investors, and getting in contact with people who know people who know film investors. Every connection is part of the process. You can't expect every one of these people to just read your entire script, regardless of how good it is. Your longer, more detailed pitch has to cover a lot of ground, answer a lot of questions, and engage the listener in a way that makes them want to read your script. The best way to do this is by using a pitch deck.
Essentially a small PowerPoint or Keynote presentation, your indie film pitch deck lets you cover all of the most pressing questions about your project in a way that takes no more than twenty minutes. Entrepreneurs use pitch decks all the time, but many filmmakers have yet to catch on.
Design Your Indie Film Pitch Deck to Impress Visually
We get it - you're a budding filmmaker with a story to tell. However, there's a huge difference between a story that unfolds on the silver screen and the one you pitch to a film investor.
One of the major mistakes amateur indie filmmakers often make here is getting lost in the details and missing the big picture. Keep in mind, very few film investors will write a check before reading your script, but the pitch should be designed to persuade them to do that. Consider your plot synopsis. It should take up no more than one slide. Just one. Include a captivating, genre-representative image and don't be afraid to make the text small if you have to.
Next, create a mood board that shows what your visual inspirations are. Film investors, like filmmakers, tend to be visually-oriented people, so take time to indulge their senses. After that, create two slides that introduce the filmmaking team and your distribution strategy (all pulled from your Business Plan). Include any relevant professional relationships you may have and the names of film festivals to which you plan on submitting your film. Only then can you get to the big ask - your budget sheet. The best way to approach this is adding a few major line items from your top sheet budget. Try adding up:
Above the line costs
Principle photography costs
Marketing and distribution costs
This outline is by no means comprehensive, but showing a budget calculation in this way combines the most important information into a single slide without overwhelming investors at first glance. Remember, the whole point is to get them to read the script – you can give them a more detailed look at your proposed budget after the fact, when you know you've got one hooked.
Just want to thank you for your materials and help over the past year. I could not have raised the $1.5 million or made this film without the materials you provided. The bargain of my career!
- James Sadwith, Producer, Writer, Director, Coming Through the Rye
Finished my deck on Friday. Got it into a few potential investor’s hands over the weekend, and by Monday had 3 out of the 10 available memberships spoken for at $160K each. The revenue projections and film comparable services by NASH, along with the business plan and pitch deck templates were instrumental in presenting the project in such a way that financially minded potential investors could understand the movie business, the market and how my project could possibly give them a substantial ROI.
Melissa was amazing throughout the entire process. Always there to answer any questions. Couldn’t have done it without you guys. Can’t thank you enough. Best money I’ve ever spent.
- Michael F, Executive Producer, Inside Sportfishing (March 2021, Gold + Financials Bundle)