Freedom or Copyright? - GNU Project - Free Software Foundation (FSF)

Alex Hudson home at
Mon Feb 11 10:13:24 UTC 2008

On Mon, 2008-02-11 at 09:50 +0000, Ciaran O'Riordan wrote:
> Alex Hudson <home at> writes:
> > For example, even the cheapest independent film is realistically going
> > to cost ~$100k.
> This is a bad example since the only reason films cost so much is because
> copyright law has become completely broken due to the lobbying of a small
> number of very rich companies.

To create a film, you have to pay people to write a script or
screenplay, hire the equipment to film it, hire people to film it
(skilled operators, actors, directors), rent an editing suite and editor
to edit the film, create any music needed, rent a sound stage to create
any other audio needed, and that's all before you get to marketing and

The costs I'm mentioning are the costs of creating an independent film.
With the best will in the world, I don't see how much of that cost is
attributable to large film companies. As a pretty obvious example:

No actors, no cameras, no filming costs. I count over fifty people
involved with that production, before you count those credited
institutionally, virtually all of whom donated their time, the rendering
farm was donated, people pre-ordered DVDs and/or donated money to the
cause. Regardless of all those donations of time, it still full-time
people employed to work on the film. Totalled up, all this donation of
time, services and money would easily surpass $100k - I would bet
employing six people along probably cost nearly that.

And this isn't even a film, it's a short. Costs don't rise linearly with
running time, but they certainly rise.

So on what basis is $100k expensive for a film?



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