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Crunch halts production of independent films

Chicago Tribune – The credit crunch and global economic recession have squeezed many independent filmmakers, who were already struggling from a glut of films and a shortage of funds even before the global economy went into a tailspin last month.

While the major studios have long-term deals in place to co-finance their movies, independent producers aren’t nearly as fortunate. Most of them do not have easy access to capital and instead must cobble together a patchwork of financing to make one film at a time. That patchwork has become frayed as lenders cool on making loans to filmmakers and foreign buyers grapple with access to credit and depressed currencies.

"The entire ability of independent filmmakers to finance their films has been shaken dramatically," said Mark Damon, chief executive of Foresight Unlimited, a Los Angeles film production company, who produced the 2003 drama "Monster."

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