In Hollywood, executives love visuals. Nothing will help you sell a project better than a video presentation. For scripted projects, a lot of the time we use short films depicting the overall concept and tone of our project. With unscripted projects, we often shoot a sizzle reel and send this to buyers along with a treatment for the series. A sizzle reel is basically a trailer which consists of on-location footage and interviews with the characters of your reality show. It’s edited in a way that easily conveys what the show is about, how each episode will be formatted, what the locations will look like and what your characters’ personalities are like. A sizzle reel should be no longer than 3 minutes.
Another way to sell your scripted movie is to shoot a trailer (just like any other trailer you’ve seen). However, it can get extremely expensive to shoot all the footage required for a proper trailer. This is where the RIPOMATIC comes in. It’s edited and presented exactly like a trailer, except it uses footage/audio from already-made movies. If done correctly, they can be extremely effective. They are, however, technically illegal to make as it infringes upon copyrighted material – hence why it’s quite hard to find good ripomatics online to show you. But don’t worry, executives and buyers don’t really care. So long as they’re excited about the movie, they could care less as to how you made your trailer. So when you make your ripomatic, as long as you don’t release it to the public, you should be fine to use it as a sales tool behind closed doors.
Here’s an example of a decently made ripomatic that I found online. Based on the aforementioned paragraph, don’t be surprised if it’s no longer available by the time you read this article.