In 1997, Sundance film festival audiences warmly received a movie entitled “Colin Fitz Lives!” from first-time director Robert Bella. The film had a great cast (William H. Macy, Martha Plimpton and John McGinty, among others) and an original story, and it seemed like the fates were aligning for something special. There was just one problem.
Robert Bella ran out of money.
Even after all the buzz surrounding the film came to a furor right after its debut at Sundance, none of the distribution deals Bella was offered would cover the expenses he incurred during its production. Bella had raised over $150,000, and had maxed out some 20 credit cards, in order to produce the movie. Under this crippling debt, Bella lost his film to creditors, became homeless for a short spell, and spent over 8 years getting his life back.
In the aftermath of “Colin Fitz Lives!,” Bella worked on and in a few movies, and dug himself out from under his massive debt. He managed to finally buy back his film from his debtors, was offered a distribution deal from IFC Films, and the theater hits screens in a limited run in August.
Sounds like the plot to a good movie, right? Hmmmm…
This post copyrighted 2010 of Dusty Fingertips Films, Inc. (If you make a movie about Robert Bella, just remember it was my idea first!)