The Danger of Wishful Thinking And The Delusional Filmmaker (Part One)

Good morning, Tanya Kersey here, the Filmmaker’s Success Mentor and today I want to talk about the danger of wishful thinking and the delusional filmmaker. This is going to be a two part series.

I know that sounds like a name of a movie right, but it came up because so many filmmakers contact me and say they’re stuck. They don’t know what to do, they have scripts and no one will read them. They ask me to read their scripts and my answer is “for what reason?” They say, “tell me what you think”. I then reply, well that’s basically coverage. There’s no reason for me to stop doing what I do in my life and my world to read a script from somebody I don’t even know.

The problem is expecting people to read your script because you wrote it and think it’s good. So I want to talk about some of these delusions that filmmakers have and to set you straight. This is all done from a place of love and it’s because I get tired of seeing filmmakers in the same spot year after year. You know who you are! You’ve been out there in the game and haven’t made any real steps to reaching your goals.

I believe filmmakers should be constantly striving and reaching for their goals.

If you set small goals, I believe you can reach them. You can move your career forward and unfortunately I don’t see that happening an awful lot. I see filmmakers in the same place this year, as they were 2 or 3 years ago. Some filmmakers have been in the game for 10 or 15 years and nothing has changed. They’re still broke, they still can’t afford to do the things they need to do and it’s wishful thinking that things are going to change.

It’s why I named this, The Danger of Wishful Thinking and the Delusional Filmmaker. Because at some point you’ve got to realize if you keep doing the same thing, you’ll keep getting the same result and that’s the definition of insanity. It’s wishful thinking that things are going to change.

You’ve got to make the changes if you want to change.

I was talking to a filmmaker the other morning and he was saying that he had all these wonderful stories and scripts, but no one was offering him anything. I said well you’ve got to get out there and attract people to your project. Just because you have great ideas, don’t expect the world to come knocking at your door wanting to produce your film. You have got to put it out there and this is where the challenge is.

How do you put it out there in such a way that it attracts attention? How do you package your film and ensure it adds value? How do you make sure you know how to tell it in a way people want to say yes I want to be involved in that project. Having the ideas is one thing. Wishful thinking is thinking that people are going to jump on your bandwagon because you’ve got a great idea.

You have to really get out there and do the work. This is for you if you’ve been in the same place for too long. It’s time to do something different. It’s time to change your game plan.

What you think is going to work, isn’t working and it’s wishful thinking to think that it’s going to magically change. It won’t.You have to be the change. Most of the time I’m really honest. It comes down to investing in your career and investing in yourself. Investing in the people, tools and resources that will help you.

I really want everybody to strive to think about that. Do you know what you’re doing? If not, find someone who can help you.

That’s all for today’s message, but don’t sweat, I’ll be back tomorrow with the second part of this article. I’m going to be going through some of the key questions you need to know the answer to if you want to be a successful film maker today and the importance of having a game plan.


  • December 5, 2016

Leave a Reply 3 comments

Davyd McCoy - December 5, 2016 Reply

I think it is a very good article and I am sure it reflects many of us to a point, until yes, we see the light realizing that as u say keep doing the same u get the same. Then we begin taking steps 1st step toward change 2nd step and so on….so long as we keeping steps toward the goal it’s great. Now it maybe a few yrs but making those strides…many films take a process of time and yes funds. I’m glad I began the change in a positive way forward as many I too have had a stumble or few but got up dusting off and keep making moves to the goal that’s the great thing and end up proud. Thanks truly goes to u!!!!!

Jamal Hodge - December 5, 2016 Reply

Loved this Tanya as I do most of your articles (And HBFF) It’s all true. I came to this realization with myself and started changing everything. This year I’ve had great success. As I’ve progressed I know gaining a solid film mentor is the next step. How can you be reached?

Rodney Martin - December 6, 2016 Reply

Very good advice…

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