Unless you want to create major Hollywood films, relocating to Los Angeles is no longer necessary to become a filmmaker. Best selling author of “Linchpin” Seth Godin says, “Many other digital evangelists, the age of generic ‘Entertainment’ is over. People want stories that are more personal, specific and relevant to their communities – Not generic ‘Holly-where’ locations.” To further Godin’s point, there are several directors that made their own films without being in L.A.
For example, Richard Linklater has produced and directed his own films in the state of Texas. “Slacker,” one of his earlier films, was shot in Austin, TX where Linklater resides. It was nominated for the 1991 Sundance Film Festival. His most recent film, “Boyhood” was also shot in Austin and Houston, TX. IFC Films, a distribution studio based in New York, funded “Boyhood”. The film currently has six Academy Award nominations, including one for Best Motion Picture. Even though Linklater received funding from IFC Films, he remained in Texas.
John Sayles is another director that is not based out of L.A. Sayles’ “Honeydripper” was filmed in Alabama while he was living there. The independent film “Honeydripper” won three awards, including Best Screenplay at the 2007 San Sebastián International Film Festival.
“If you want to make other people’s films, drive to LA, stand in line and after a while, you’ll have a chance among the ranks of soldiers who make other people’s movies,” according to Thefilmcircuit.com. There is no need to relocate to Los Angeles if you want to be a successful independent director like Linklater and Sayles.