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By Mark Bell | December 30, 2014

Hey, filmmakers! Welcome to Going Bionic #247, aka our Year-In-Review. 2014 has proved to be quite memorable in the motion picture industry. While indie films dominated the 86th Academy Awards, mega-blockbuster-driven summer and holiday box office totals were the lowest in decades. Major film studios laid-off thousands of people as they announced their intentions to make fewer films at tighter budgets, and the value of non-star driven indie feature films continued to plummet. However, the international box office proved to be a financial lifesaver for many American films, as the cinematic world literally became our oyster. With that said, here is a look back at our treacherous, but trend-filled 2014!


#196 – Sundance Reveals New Acquisition Trends 1/28/14
This article focuses on distribution trends, which emerged from Sundance, 2014. Key trends included smaller paydays for indie films, studios being “hush-hush” about the acquisition prices, and fewer films finding theatrical distribution.


#198 – Greeting from Berlin and EFM – 2/11/2014
This article looks at trends I discovered while attending the 2014 Berlin Film Festival and European Film Market. While some trends mirrored Sundance, others offered hope to independent filmmakers with regards to selling their films internationally.


#201 – Little Films Nearly Sweep the Oscars 3/4/2014
This post-Oscar edition discusses how indie films won seven of the final eight Oscars at the 86th Academy Awards.

#203 – Making a Successful Micro-Budget Film 3/18/2014
This edition reveals five things you can do, to give your micro-budget the best chance to thrive in the current marketplace.


#207 – Wrapping Up MIPTV 4/15/2014
This article discusses sales trends from the world’s most prominent TV sales market: MIPTV in Cannes, France.


#212Going Bionic Turns Four Years Old 5/18/2014
This article looks back at four years of Going Bionic!

#216 – Cannes Wrap-Up 5/27/2014
This is an on-the-ground, in-depth look at both the Cannes Film Festival and the Cannes Film Market, based on my trip there.


#219 – Managing Expectations Part One 6/17/2014
This edition offers filmmakers suggestions on how to manage the expectations throughout your career as a filmmaker.


#223 – Five Things You Need to Know About Business Plans 7/15/2014
Here are five strategic things about business plans that may help yours be more effective.


#227 – Five Indie Filmmaker Faux Pas to Avoid 8/12/2014
Avoiding these five production-based mistakes will likely increase the value of your independent feature film.


#230 – May the Summer Box Office Rest in Peace 9/2/2014
This edition of Going Bionic chronicles the horrific summer box office of 2014.


#238 – Acquiring Life Rights 10/28/2014
This article discusses three key things to remember when you’re negotiating the acquisition of someone’s life rights.


#240 – Greetings from AFM 11/11/2014
This edition gives an overview of AFM, 2014.


#245 – How to Deal with Bad Notes 12/16/2014
This article offers a few tips on how to deal with (and process) really bad notes on your project.

So, there’s your quick look our bionic 2014. As for me, my year consisted of great expansion businesswise, with almost no expansion on my waistline (which made 2014 my best career year since before the world financial meltdown of 2008). I’m healthy, my wife and I just celebrated our seventh wedding anniversary yesterday (Happy Anniversary Shahina!), our three year old twin daughters are thriving, and our blind and cancerous 14-year old dog Pepper is still wagging his tail.

With 2015 just a few frames away, I’d like to thank all you for lending me your eyes this year, and I’d be honored to borrow them again in the New Year. Until then, I hope the last 48 hours of 2014 are your most memorable, and I look forward to seeing you next year! I can be followed on Twitter @Lonelyseal.

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