If the creative categories were listed in priority of relationship as the participant categories have been, the creative category at the top of the list would be  the story. The story, or in the case of film the screenplay, is the foundation for the picture, where it was first produced. It is the creative genius that makes or breaks a motion picture.

Story is Still KingA good story is more powerful than money. There is no more important creative asset to successful movie making. Many wealthy people have entered the motion picture industry with deep pockets to create a movie empire. Without the ability to recognize a good story, however, they end up with a lot of money spent on unimpressive and under-performing movies in their portfolio.

No amount of star power or good directing can save a bad story line. Many directors or actors have made a movie they should not have because it was a good political move, or the money was too good to pass. Their efforts may lift the quality of the movie but they cannot replace the need for a strong story that audiences want to see and hear.

The greatest independent producers can identify great stories. No amount of good business sense, organization, planning or business relationships will replace the need to be able to recognize an entertaining tale that will please audiences. Successful producers need first and foremost, to find and create movies with stories that need to be told.

As important as this ability is, however, recognizing great stories is not enough for an independent producer to green light a picture. Great stories that cannot generate an audience big enough to support its production costs should not be made unless there is an alternative goal. If there is another goal, all parties involved know and support this aim. Great producers realize that balancing the importance of strong creative with a sound business strategy will create the best movies with consistent success.