Budgeting and Scheduling Your Film – Toronto


Tuesday September 18th 6:30 – 9:30pm
Location: Daniels Spectrum – 585 Dundas St. E.

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Budgeting and Scheduling Your Film

Week 2 of the Producers’ Foundation Certificate is presented by Michael Sparaga.

Film Budgeting and Scheduling provides the critical backbone of your film. A film budget is a list of all the resources and people you need to make your film. A schedule is when and where you need them. This session runs through the essentials, conventions and details required for film budgeting and scheduling your shooting days.

All classes were informative and the tutors were really one of the best, and though I know there’s a lot more I need to learn I left feeling a lot more confident about handling the role of a Producer and should be back for more!”

Always considered the boring bit by film producers and directors, the budget and schedule are the spine of any production. If you get the budget (the money part) wrong, your film will stall half-finished without cash. Get the schedule (the time) wrong, and your film will suffer – either from loss of quality, or remain unfinished because you have run out of time (and budget!)

This evening explains how scripts are analyzed and whipped into shape budget-wise and schedule-wise.

  • Script breakdown
  • Assessing prices
  • Union vs non-union
  • Creating a do-able schedule

A professional film budget and schedule are an essential part of a business plan.

This class is part of the Producers Foundation Certificate. Check out the other classes in this certificate:

Creating A Business Plan | Marketing and SellingMovie Money  | Basic Legal Contracts

About the Instructor

Michael Sparaga is an award-winning Canadian screenwriter and producer. His debut feature, the critically-acclaimed, superhero-comedy Sidekick, played in numerous worldwide film festivals and was released in Canada by Maple Pictures before going on to sell in multiple international territories, including the US (Warner Home Video). Remake rights were optioned by Universal’s Focus Features.

His follow-up production, Maple Flavour Films, a humorous TV-hour documentary on the current state of the Canadian film industry, which Michael also directed, made the rounds on the Canadian film festival circuit and aired on Air Canada and PayTV.

Michael’s second feature, the workplace-comedy, Servitude, celebrated a sold-out world premiere at the Just For Laughs Comedy Festival in Montreal before going on to be released in Canada by Alliance Films.  Starring Joe Dinicol (“The L.A. Complex”), Margot Kidder (Superman), Enrico Colantoni (“Veronica Mars”) and Dave Foley (“The Kids in the Hall”), Servitude was the first film greenlit for production out of Telefilm Canada’s Features Comedy Lab. As part of the Lab, Michael prepared Servitude for production with mentorship from comedy heavyweights Ivan Reitman (Ghostbusters), Etan Cohen (Tropic Thunder) and Donald Petrie (How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days).

As a screenwriter, Michael has had several screenplays optioned and several in active development. When not writing and producing under his own banner, Michael works with other independent filmmakers, providing story editing services as well as assisting them in various producing capacities. Credits include Son of the Sunshine (world premiere Slamdance 2009) and Gravy Train (released through Alliance Films in 2010).


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