Handling Financial and Creative Risk in German Film Production

M. Bjørn von Rimscha


Creative film producers serve as interface between creative/artistic and commercial objectives. They have to address risks in both realms: production and consumption risks shape the commercial framework, reputation risks and creative risk the creative framework. In Germany public film funding was implemented to reduce commercial pressure and allow for more creative and artistic films. However, in recent years the focus of public funding has shifted from cultural to economic aspects. This raises the question how producers deal with risks both economic and creative when developing a film. We present results from a qualitative study with a diverse sample of German producers. We find that the power relations in the industry yield to predominantly commercially oriented measures of risk control. However risk control is not systematic with intuitive decisions allowing some room for creative risk takers.


film producer; creative risk-taking; risk management; producer orientations; economic pressures; public funding

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