With “C-Bar” from Mark Baugher currently climbing towards the top 100… I thought it might be useful for me to share one of Marks articles for “Westerner” magazine with you all. This is the story of how Mark Baugher made his book into a movie. A real movie. You can learn more about “C-Bar” by clicking here.
I told you last month that I would talk about the money needed to make a movie. What if I told you it costs $250,000 to make a movie, would you believe that? Truth is I have no idea. I was talking with an English filmmaker about how we made this movie. He said the story of making the movie is as good as the movie itself. Let’s see what you think.
In my movie making experience, I had everything line up and fall in my lap. Patrick Ball, the cinematography and directing genius, called me wanting to further his career. He and his crew used the C-Bar movie as proof that they know what they are doing. Since making C-Bar, they have all gone forward with their careers, from opening their own companies to working in Hollywood. Like I said last month, the secret to success is surrounding yourself with the right people.
The locations are everywhere if you live in Arizona. Most of the actors are Western re-enactors. They gather up on weekends and do skits for the tourism trade. They had the needed costumes. I just called the groups and put the word out, and they came. The leading lady I needed had to be young, beautiful and a good horsewoman. I was walking through a feed store and saw Robin talking with someone she knew. I looked her over. Here stood a young, blond, beautiful woman with a big belt buckle. I knew that from this chance meeting she was the perfect woman to fill the role. I just walked up to her and asked if she wanted to be in a movie. Luckily, my wife was with me. I gave her my novel. She called three days later, telling me that she has been the Jessie Lynn character all her life. She would do the part.
Most of the props came from thrift stores. But what about that big problem of insurance? We were an all-amateur group making a movie. My personal liability coverage covered us. Shooting in the national forest was not an issue. I checked with them and they said as long as we were not a commercial organization, there was no problem.
With all we had available to us, the next big hurdle was showing the people involved that they were part of a viable production. There were people doubting what they were getting into. Their doubts vanished after the first shoot. We had a good script. Patrick and his crew were professionals. I made sure everyone enjoyed the experience.
From that day on, it got more and more fun to be a part of. Over eight months, we shot thirty-eight days. I worked seven days a week for that eight months, pulling everything together. Was it work? I guess so. Was it fun? It was the most fun time of my life. I think that writing novels is fun, but it pales in comparison to the excitement of movie making. I would do it again just for the fun. Wouldn’t even care if I got paid.
We are working on another episode. It’s written. The actors are in place and the locations are lined up. C-Bar is ranked at 35 at this time on Amazon. Are you ready for your homework? Go to Amazon movies. If you are a Prime member, just click on the movie and at the end, leave us a review. Reviews are very important for growth. If you are not a Prime member, you can sign up for a thirty-day free trial. Just click here to see “C-Bar” on Amazon Prime!
Next month, I will tell you about our premiere and the amazing things that followed. The kind of amazing that I still can’t believe happened.
P.S. The movie cost nothing to make.
You can also find Mark Baugher’s bestselling “C-Bar” on Amazon. It’s hurtling towards the top 100! Catch your own copy today by clicking here. Follow Mark’s fantastic column, alongside other great content, each month in Westerner magazine by visiting www.westernermagazine.com.