The Art of Lean Filmmaking
Minimum price
Suggested price


Journalists and bloggers: please do not publish anything about this until the embargo is lifted!

Please contact the author for more information about when this is.

The Art of Lean Filmmaking

An unconventional guide to creating independent feature films

About the Book

Lean Filmmaking is an explosion of creativity, turning conventional wisdom upside down to vigorously shake out obsolete ideas revered by the traditional film industry.

Writing a script. Pitching to investors. Surviving development hell. Before even picking up a camera. All while juggling a family, a social life and a day job. No wonder making an independent feature film feels out of reach.

Lean Filmmaking is different.

It celebrates experimentation and inventiveness, while forging a sustainable artistic practice.

It saves time, energy and money (but it’s not just for low-budget or cheap ideas).

It takes advantage of surprising – often counterintuitive – strategies to dramatically improve the filmmaking process, including:

  • Collaborating in non-hierarchical, cross-functional squads
  • Working in ongoing iterative Make-Show-Adjust Cycles
  • Validating assumptions with early fan feedback

If you’re ready to transition from shorts, series or online videos to creating independent feature films, go from idea to launch with the five-step Lean Filmmaking method. Get started immediately with tested techniques that will empower you to take action, bust through stumbling blocks and ignite your creativity.

“Lean Filmmaking kickstarts an entire generation of new filmmaking voices, arming them with the tools and self-reliance to create original, important stories, then connecting them with the audience who especially craves them.” —Perri Cummings and Paul Anthony Nelson, producers Trench

“Lean Filmmaking revolutionizes how filmmakers work.” —Melanie Rowland, producer Time Apart

Cheeky provocateurs and creative agitators, siblings David Eddy and Kylie Eddy have combined their agile coaching expertise and filmmaking experience to re-imagine the development, production and distribution of independent films in an uncertain world.

  • Share this book

  • Categories

    • Agile
    • Lean
    • Humanities
    • Non-Fiction
    • Entertainment
  • Feedback

    Email the Author(s)

About the Authors

David Eddy
David Eddy

David Eddy is the Co-Founder of Lean Filmmaking, a new way to make films with creativity at its heart. He’s combined his agile coaching skills with his sister Kylie’s filmmaking expertise to re-imagine how films can be developed, produced, marketed and distributed. 

David has managed agile teams in web and software development, was an agile consultant for ThoughtWorks, a product owner at Bankwest and is the CTO of the startup Agworld. He’s also a proud dad to three boys and enthusiastic sci-fi fan. 

Kylie Eddy
Kylie Eddy

Kylie Eddy is the Co-Founder of Lean Filmmaking, a new way to make films with creativity at its heart. She’s combined her filmmaking skills with her brother David’s agile coaching expertise to re-imagine how films can be developed, produced, marketed and distributed.

Kylie wrote/directed/produced an independent feature film, was a marketer for Walt Disney Home Entertainment and general manager of Melbourne Queer Film Festival. She’s a self-proclaimed minimalist and YouTube junkie.   

Table of Contents

    • Introduction: A new way to make films with creativity at its heart
  • Part 1: Core Values
    • The Lean Filmmaking Philosophy
    • Collaboration is key
    • Fan focused first
    • Story before production values
    • Learn by doing
    • Make-Show-Adjust Cycles
    • Values can transform creativity
    • What you need to start (and it isn’t money)
  • Part 2: Step by Step Guide
    • The Lean Filmmaking Method
    • Step 1: Form Squad
    • Start with a squad, not a script
    • Recruit for skills, not roles
    • Choose the minimum viable squad (it’s smaller than you think)
    • Align squad goals
    • A squad needs transparency and moxie
    • You’re done with this step when…
    • Step 2: Discover Fans
    • Let’s talk about talking to fans
    • Start with a spark
    • Conduct research interviews
    • Draft a fan experience
    • Make tester videos
    • You’re done with this step when…
    • Step 3: Develop Drafts
    • Ceremonies empower the squad
    • Restructure work by overlapping activities
    • Delay decisions with just-in-time production
    • Construct the story scaffold
    • Run full-film draft Make-Show-Adjust Cycles
    • You’re done with this step when…
    • Step 4: Produce Polishes
    • Ask fans to pay for it
    • Scale the squad (but only if you really need to)
    • Prioritize with the Impact-vs-Difficulty Matrix
    • Run full-film polish Make-Show-Adjust Cycles
    • You’re done with this step when…
    • Step 5: Launch Film
    • Stop obsessing about film festivals
    • Demystify self-distribution
    • Run marketing and sales experiments
    • Release the film
    • It’s out, now what?
    • You’re really done when…
    • Conclusion
    • Glossary
    • About Lean Filmmaking
    • Acknowledgments

The Leanpub 60 Day 100% Happiness Guarantee

Within 60 days of purchase you can get a 100% refund on any Leanpub purchase, in two clicks.

Now, this is technically risky for us, since you'll have the book or course files either way. But we're so confident in our products and services, and in our authors and readers, that we're happy to offer a full money back guarantee for everything we sell.

You can only find out how good something is by trying it, and because of our 100% money back guarantee there's literally no risk to do so!

So, there's no reason not to click the Add to Cart button, is there?

See full terms...

80% Royalties. Earn $16 on a $20 book.

We pay 80% royalties. That's not a typo: you earn $16 on a $20 sale. If we sell 5000 non-refunded copies of your book or course for $20, you'll earn $80,000.

(Yes, some authors have already earned much more than that on Leanpub.)

In fact, authors have earnedover $13 millionwriting, publishing and selling on Leanpub.

Learn more about writing on Leanpub

Free Updates. DRM Free.

If you buy a Leanpub book, you get free updates for as long as the author updates the book! Many authors use Leanpub to publish their books in-progress, while they are writing them. All readers get free updates, regardless of when they bought the book or how much they paid (including free).

Most Leanpub books are available in PDF (for computers) and EPUB (for phones, tablets and Kindle). The formats that a book includes are shown at the top right corner of this page.

Finally, Leanpub books don't have any DRM copy-protection nonsense, so you can easily read them on any supported device.

Learn more about Leanpub's ebook formats and where to read them

Write and Publish on Leanpub

You can use Leanpub to easily write, publish and sell in-progress and completed ebooks and online courses!

Leanpub is a powerful platform for serious authors, combining a simple, elegant writing and publishing workflow with a store focused on selling in-progress ebooks.

Leanpub is a magical typewriter for authors: just write in plain text, and to publish your ebook, just click a button. (Or, if you are producing your ebook your own way, you can even upload your own PDF and/or EPUB files and then publish with one click!) It really is that easy.

Learn more about writing on Leanpub