Breaking new ground in independent filmmaking

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Frustrated by traditional funding methods, 27 year-old Kiwi filmmaker Mark Prebble is harnessing the power of the internet to finish making his first feature film - Futile Attraction.

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Frustrated by traditional funding methods, 27 year-old Kiwi filmmaker Mark Prebble is harnessing the power of the internet to finish making his first feature film - Futile Attraction.

Frustrated by traditional funding methods, 27 year-old Kiwi filmmaker Mark Prebble is harnessing the power of the internet to finish making his first feature film - Futile Attraction.

In 2002 Mark directed the low-budget digital feature in Wellington over an intensive 3-week period. Now based in Auckland, he has been editing Futile Attraction ever since.

Faced with $25,000 of further post-production work Mark decided to go directly to the largest and most generous source of financial support in the world - the general public.

He created a website - www.makemarksmovie.com - that allows people to contribute money online and get their name in the credits of the film. Credits range from "Thanks To" to "Executive Producer" depending on the size of the contribution.

The response has been amazing. Says Prebble:

"The website has been online for less than a month. The main publicity has been e-mail word of mouth. Already I'm getting 50 to 100 hits and 10-20 e-mails a day from people all over the world who want to help in any way they can. I'm getting hits from Australia, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, China, Finland, France, Germany, Israel, Japan, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, UK, USA and of course New Zealand.

I expected people would like the site and might contribute money. What amazes me are the creative ways complete strangers are offering to help. There are groups of English teenagers organising sponsored activities in their hometowns to raise money. A woman in Australia is organising a performance poetry night and a different UK volunteer is designing posters for both activities. This is clearly just the beginning."

Futile Attraction is a mockumentary comedy about a film crew making a Reality TV Show about a couple brought together by a dating agency. However, the couple is so in compatible that the crew has to manipulate the relationship to get the footage they need.

It stars Alistair Browning (Lord of the Rings: Return of the King, Veritcal Limit, Rain), Michelle Ang (Neighbours, The Tribe) and a host of up and coming New Zealand talent.

Written by

Mark Prebble

6 Feb 2004

Personal Description Vice President of the New Zealand Writers Guild