Moonshine Moonshot

S2 Ep. 33 How to distribute your documentary

September 27, 2022 Sue Collins & Mike Hill Season 2 Episode 33
Moonshine Moonshot
S2 Ep. 33 How to distribute your documentary
Show Notes

Hello, fellow impact filmmakers. In this epidose, I’m discussing something I know you will be interested in. And how do I know that? Because almost every conversation I have with an emerging – or even established – filmmaker leads to the same question: How do you distribute your impact film or documentary? 

The thing is, there’s no one clear-cut answer that I can give. Because in 2022 there are endless ways to distribute your film and the landscape feels as if it is constantly changing too.

The way my team and I released films 15 years ago is quite different from how we do it now. Long gone are the days when engaging a distributor was the key to getting your film out into the world. 

And many filmmakers do still think they’ll create the work and attach a distributor, so they don’t put a lot of thought into how they’ll find an audience and how their film will go out into the world.  A distributor is responsible for that right?  Yes, and no.  

If you can attach a distributor, and that is not a sure thing.  Then yes, their job is to put your film out to the world.  But how they do that, how much priority they give your film in their catalogue and how much they will commit to marketing your work.  That’s a big unknown, no matter how good your contract looks to be.  Things change.  And you really need to be clear on your numbers when you do your contracting or you can find that any returns due to you can be swallowed up in ‘marketing costs’ on the distributers side.  Leaving you with very little.

What sort of distribution are you considering? A theatrical release? Video on demand? YouTube or broadcast television?  Maybe it’s a combination. 

Once you set a path next step is working out who will help you distribute your film. Will you do this yourself, or are you considering working with an outreach producer or putting a team together?? And how do you go about building an audience to put your film in front of? That’s a whole other layer you should really give some thought to as well. 

If your head is spinning, don’t panic. I’m covering all things related to distributing a documentary or factual project or an impact film in this episode. Mike and I zoned in on the topic in the latest episode of Moonshine Moonshot too.  So if you’d prefer to watch, click here

Let’s begin.

But to learn more from me,  head to to find more great content and resources including my free ebook that will help you craft a compelling video story

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