Film Mistri is an online based production house that currently operates on the basis of crowdfunding- a process whereby an estimated amount of money is collected from the public for a specific project via the internet. According to the founders Zahid Gogon who is a director and Farhan Habib, the media manager of Film Mistri, it is a first of its kind initiative in Bangladesh, where crowdsourcing is a relatively new concept compared to the western world.
In their attempt to make qualitative short films, and given the fact that many beautiful stories remain untold, the duo recognised that the funding of the ventures, acted as a major drawback. To shed some light of hope on the issue, they decided to use the practice of crowdfunding to support a generous cause. Currently, they are running a pilot-project for a short film titled Prem Puran.
Their website filmmistri.com has a separate tab which will take the visitors to a page that provides details regarding the Prem Puran project. Further down the page, there is a breakdown of what a donor may receive in return for their donation which starts from Tk 10 and goes up to Tk 5,00,000, including a 2.5, 5 and 25 percent return of the total income for the top three donation slots respectively. The monetary transactions can be made easily using the various mobile banking services available. For further queries, there is an option to chat with the admins of the page directly.
After the film is made, on its first year it will make rounds at the film festival circuits; on the second year, it will be screened for a ticket at educational institutions and other relevant places; finally it will be released in any of the online video-on-demand platforms. A renowned audit firm will be assigned the task to conduct the calculations, so the donors can receive their relevant shares. “If this initiative proves to be successful then it opens the doors for many possibilities,” Zahid Gogon asserted. “Not only will this assist the short-film makers, but it will also support feature films, music videos and other kinds of creative content that is all being held up simply due to a lack of funds.”