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The most common question asked about a short film is "What was your budget?". 

We spent $22,000 to get Peep Show "in the can".  It cost another $12,000 in post-
production,  for about $35,000 to get to the point of having a print to show at festivals. 

Once it became clear that the film would do well, the expenses increased.   Festivals
were averaging around $30 each to enter, so entering 100 festivals ran to about $3000
just in entry fees.  With the cost of duplication, promotional materials, and postage,
suddenly festival pursuit became a $5000 effort.

When the opportunity for distribution became a reality, this was a huge relief, because
it meant getting some money back, but in order to satisfy cable networks and studios,
music clearances and releases from every person who worked on the film were necessary. 
Obtaining music clearances and original score, as well as releases and attorney feesran to
about $20,000 by the time we had secured everything necessary to have the film run on
HBO and be put out on DVD by Columbia/TriStar. 

You don't necessarily need to spend alot of money to make a good film, but you do need
to know whether your material will work on a low budget, on no-budget, or whether you
need "real money" to hire a knowlegdable crew and rent professional equipment.

Peep Show would not have worked on a low- or no-budget.  In order to make the comedy
work, the material needed cinematic treatment: set construction, camera moves, lighting,
and delicate timing which would not have been served well with a bare-bones, hand-held
style shoot.

But with the knowledge that the material was good and could work out really well with the
right production effort, the initial production budget of $22,000 was raised.  Here is the top-
sheet for the budget prepared by Producer Gary Bryman:

As Peep Show became in heavy demand for festivals, a total of eight 35mm prints were
struck, which ran about $400 each, for another $3000. 


Aspiring filmmakers frequently ask how many setups were used, how many days the shoot
went, how many shots there were, what kind of film and camera were used.  Peep Show was
shot on Kodak 5279 Vision Series (500) film with Panavision camera and lenses.  We could
have saved nearly $2000 by using a different film stock, but the D.P.  was not thrilled about
using slower film.  When you're going for a strong visual look, it's not smart to cut corners on
the actual film stock so we went with the better stock.

We did a total of 58 setups in a 2 day shoot.  The opening shot, a long (1:20) dolly move took
about half of the first day, which was a 12 hour day.  The second day went to about 20 hours. 

We rented a stage for a week, which gave us 4 days to build the sets, 2 days to shoot, and 1
day to strike.

Here is the 2-page shot list from the shoot:

And below is a sample of the script supervisor's notes.  These notes are critical once
editing begins, and a good script supervisor is essential.  The first page shown here is
the supervisor's notes directly on the script, showing how much of the script is covered
by each shot.  The second page shows additional detail about each shot and take on
the corresponding script page:

And here is the corresponding notes for the above script page, showing
each scene number and take, the duration of each take, and any relevant
notes about the scene or individual take:

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