How to Sell Your Film: A Comprehensive Film Distribution Workshop

How to Sell Your Film: A Comprehensive Film distribution workshop


April 8, 2017

How to Sell Your Film: A Comprehensive Film Distribution Workshop

You’ve made a film, but now what? How can you get your film seen by the widest audience? How can you maximize sales? How do you get it to a distributor and get the best deal? Should you go the DIY route? What about hybrid distribution?

You might think with all of the new digital platforms out there now, it’s easier to get your film distributed. In reality, it’s just gotten more complicated. The good news is: there is a lot of opportunity to reach your audience and to keep more revenue. In order to do this, you need to understand the new system and make the right choices for you and your project. We’ve designed a comprehensive workshop to help you navigate the best distribution path for any genre or length of film – fiction, documentaries, and everything in between.


We’ve partnered with DocuMentors to bring you this one-day course, How to Sell Your Film: A Comprehensive Film Distribution Workshop. You’ll gain a deep understanding of current film distribution from both sides of the aisle – from the buyer’s perspective, as well as the filmmaker’s.

What to expect:
  • Learn current trends, key strategies, and important players in the film distribution field right now.
  • Get clear, detailed information and action steps on how you can maximize your success, in both reaching the most eyeballs and in bringing in the most revenue.
  • No matter what length, genre, or stage of production, implementing the content of this workshop could be a game-changer for your film.


Who Should Attend

Documentary filmmakers, independent filmmakers, fiction filmmakers, film producers, film directors, first-time filmmakers, distributors, entertainment attorneys, and transmedia producers.



Anna Darrah is an experienced film buyer, negotiating with and licensing over 800 films in her 12 years working for Gaiam and Spiritual Cinema Circle. She has been an active player on the festival circuit and currently advises filmmakers on custom distribution strategies.

Jilann Spitzmiller is the co-founder of DocuMentors and an award-winning filmmaker whose work has premiered in competition at Sundance, as well as at SXSW, DOC NYC, and Edinburgh. Jilann’s films have been broadcast around the globe on BBC, NBC, Sundance Channel, Al Jazeera, PBS, Discovery Networks, and many more. She is currently successfully implementing a hybrid distribution plan with her new film, Still Dreaming.




The workshop will cover:

  • How to identify and find your core, paying audience
  • How to stay in a position of power throughout the distribution process
  • Windows and rights – learn what to sell and when, including Theatrical, Semi-theatrical, SVOD, TVOD, VOD, Broadcast, Educational, and DVD
  • The players in the distribution field – companies and titles
  • How to budget for distribution
  • Must-have marketing tools and branding
  • Digital platforms and how to get them to carry your film
  • Deliverables and costs for different platforms, windows, and markets
  • Getting into and navigating film festivals, markets, and forums
  • Selling and pitching at markets and forums
  • Negotiating contracts in your favor and what rights you must keep
  • Broadcast sales, including navigating the PBS System
  • Opportunities in Non-traditional Theatrical and Semi-Theatrical Distribution
  • Corporate sponsorships and grants for distribution and outreach
  • DIY educational distribution
  • Monetizing grassroots and activist distribution
  • Finding and working with niche distributors
  • Creating and working with affiliate partners for maximum reach and profits
  • Insurance and legal issues
What People Are Saying

“The workshop was everything the title suggested. SO much information was packed into that eight hour session, very little of which I understood going in. I took roughly 50 pages of notes, which I started to go through last night. It will likely take quite a while to absorb the key parts, but it was worth every cent. Clearly I would have made big, costly mistakes without it. Now I have resources to move forward.” – Daniel Buckley

“I can’t remember when so much useful and topical information was presented in a workshop in such a succinct and accessible way. Thanks for all your hard work.” – Jennifer Townsend

“Your workshop was so very helpful! Thanks to both Jilann and Anna for all your hard work preparing such an informative and well presented seminar – it was worth 16 hours in a car! And I am not a fan of long drives!” – Leslie Epperson

“What an amazing presentation! Thank you for creating such a helpful workshop and sharing your wealth of knowledge. Enjoyed meeting new and interesting fellow film makers plus it was fun to see familiar faces.” – Melissa Ash



April 8, 2017 from 9:00am to 5:00pm.



Graduate School of Journalism, University of California Berkeley, near San Francisco. Map

Coffee & bagels will be provided in the morning. Affordable options for lunch can be found nearby.



$325 USD. Register by March 1st to automatically receive $40 off.


  • This course is intended for anyone interested in getting into media or film, as well as experienced filmmakers.
  • Please bring something to take notes with.


Additional information

Travel, lodging and other information can be found on our Frequently Asked Questions page.
No video or audio recordings of the materials presented are permitted in any workshop.



Please contact Diane Villadsen by email at, or call +1.510.642.6049.



Refund policy
  • Cancellations must be received in writing by email to
  • Cancellations made up to 15 days prior to the start of the program registered for will receive a refund of all monies less the $125.00 cancellation fee.
  • We are unable to refund any fees for registrations cancelled within two weeks of the start of training.
  • Failure to appear for the training will result in forfeiture of the full course fee.
  • Changes to the registration at anytime are only by approval of Berkeley Advanced Media Institute administration.
  • The Berkeley Advanced Media Institute reserves the right to cancel or reschedule training due to low enrollment or other unforeseen circumstances beyond the control of Berkeley Advanced Media Institute. In this case, applicants are entitled to a full refund of the program fee.
  • The Berkeley Advanced Media Institute will advise applicants at the earliest opportunity of changes to schedule program. The Berkeley Advanced Media Institute is not responsible for travel fees, or any expenses incurred as a result of cancelled programs.
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