"What IFP does
IFP knows where independent film is coming from, helped it get to where it is today, and has the experience and programs to advance its future.
IFP fosters the development of 200 feature and documentary films a year through Independent Film Week™, the Independent Filmmaker Labs™ and other activities.
IFP offers education in the art, technology and business of independent filmmaking through workshops, seminars, conferences, mentorships and Filmmaker Magazine™, the premier publication in the field.
IFP builds the audience for independent films by showcasing them in collaboration with other cultural institutions and celebrating them with the Gotham Awards™, the first honors of the film awards season.
IFP champions the work and advocates the interests of a network of 10,000 members in New York City and throughout the world.
In addition, IFP conducts special programs to promote racial, ethnic, religious, ideological, gender and sexual diversity. This, after all, is what independent film is all about: expanding people's points of view by exposing them to different ones."
Sounds good/exciting. Looking forward to finding out details about each of the IFP activities mentioned. Also, at some point in the future I'd like to see a line that reads something like "assisting ultra-low budget DIY filmmakers navigate the production, self-distribution, & marketing terrains" or something like that.
But, so far, looks like IFP has done/is doing quite a bit for indie film in the US.
Also, that 10,000 members number is impressive. But, in the US, there are probably at least 50,000 people involved in indie filmmaking (or stage 1 of indie feature filmmaking - pre-FT professional, in that zone between film student & filmmaker/film artists for life, I arrived at that 50,000 number by taking the "5,000 features submitted to Sundance" figure that I often hear about in indie film media & multiplying that by 10 - it probably takes at least 10 very interested people to get an indie feature made - from script to screen, also, that 50,000 figure is probably a very conservative number, actual number of people involved in indie filmmaking in the US is probably over 100,000). So, IFP has room to grow/there are lots more people who may become interested in joining IFP if programs & services useful to them are offered & or if the org is marketed in a way that is attractive to these novice filmmakers (not sure what changes or marketing approaches would work here, but I assume I'll get some ideas as I explore IFP further).
One thing that an org like IFP could offer is a press list. Contact info to all the NYC (& maybe beyond - maybe nation wide & world wide) publications/media that covers indie film screenings & related events (DVD releases, VOD offerings, interesting stories about indie filmmakers, etc.) - could be very useful for self-distributing filmmakers. Maybe IFP already offers something like this, will have to see.