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The Influence

Duncan Cork came to the idea for Slated when he was trying to finance a film and funding came up a million pounds short. He was eager to find a way to make up the difference with more than one investor. So with some help from some collaborators, they created that marketplace.

Slated provides film producers with a chance to put their films in front of a small network of people eager to invest a fair amount of money in them. A typical investment on Slated goes from $25,000 to $200,000. Many of these films are using Kickstarter or IndieGoGo to prove there’s an audience who’s excited before coming over to Slated to flesh out the budget. So far, there are over 180 features and $2 billion represented on the site.

Safety and trust are key to persuading film funders to deal with the site. "We’re sensitive to the celebrities and other high-net-worth individuals on our site," Cork explained. "It’s a closed community of trusted people.  We believe strongly in the projects we select.  That’s what’s allowing people to be comfortable to write those $25,000 or sometimes $250,000 checks. They know the filmmakers have gone through a lot of scrutiny; there’s a high bar to get on the site."

Biggest Success

The team at Slated is always happy when someone who would never have met a filmmaker comes on board with a big check after discovering the project on their site. Recent examples include Christian Camargo’s "The Seagull," which raised its money when it attached Katie Holmes and William Hurt, and Marina Zenovich's "Roman Polanski: Odd Man Out."

Biggest Disappointment

"The Way Way Back," which sold to Fox Searchlight for Sundance's biggest deal this year, gained a lot of interest on the site when the film attached Steve Carrell to star.  But none of the Slated members who expressed interest acted quickly enough; producers secured funds from a previously known investor. Cork and Paternot use that story to prove to investors that big deals can be easily missed. 

Biggest Challenge

Cork said the biggest challenge is explaining to some people that this could help them do their job more easily. "We’re concentrating on a lot of education on how to use the technology," he said. "We’ve created a simple and elegant solution to address the problems. Now, we’re concentrating on helping people use it."

What's Next

"It’s not a quick sprint," said Paternot. "The goal is to help the existing industry use our tools, to help Hollywood become more successful and transparent than it already is." Slowly, the company has worked with more trusted names – talent agencies, film institutes, curators, sales agents – to build up an impressive roster. 

The Survey
My Biggest Career Break...
As I started my junior year at Cornell, I started a company called It was one of the first social networking sites and was a hell of an experience. We took the company public in 1998, and had 10% of all internet users hitting our servers every month. The power of social has been deeply ingrained in my DNA ever since.
Best Filmmaker Working Today...
I guess I would have to go with Chris Nolan. Ever since "Memento" he hasn't had a miss. He raised the bar on dark, character-driven films that also have wide commercial appeal.
A Guilty Pleasure Movie...
"Flash Gordon." But "Tremors" is a close second. Kevin Bacon fighting giant worms in the desert? What's not to like?
My First Job...
Working for a video conferencing company back in 1994 in San Antonio. It paid $10/hour and I had to code a diagnostic switch to help testing on their state-of-the-art video conference boxes that they were building for the Department of Defense. Each box must have weighed 50 lbs. and cost thousands of dollars.
The age that Stephan got his first job
Attended this year by Stephan
The average amount that Stephan travels for work each year
Stephan has been to the Sundance Film Festival
The Survey
My Biggest Career Break...
Starting Slated in 2010.
Best Filmmaker Working Today...
Darren Aronofsky. Sharp, well‐crafted compelling stories, ability to execute high‐concept film but still connect to an audience.
A Guilty Pleasure Movie...
My First Job...
Art Director for global advertising and design agency Saatchi & Saatchi.
The age that Duncan got his first job
Attended this year by Duncan
The average amount that Duncan travels for work each year
Duncan has been to the Sundance Film Festival