The film and TV industry is a highly competitive industry, with production companies forming a shape similar to the pyramids, consisting of large, medium, and small production companies. Similar to the pyramids, each level has its own unique characteristics, strengths, and challenges that make them different from one another. This is created mainly by the large companies completing multiple productions every year, medium companies are sometimes newly formed or have one or two successful productions completed, and smaller companies typically focus on making things like independent movies and shorts.
At the top of the pyramids are the large production companies, which have the resources and infrastructure to produce multiple films and TV shows every year. These companies can be owned by major studios like Disney, Warner Bros, or Universal, and have the backing of large production budgets, established distribution networks, and marketing and promotion capabilities. The large companies have a wide range of resources at their disposal, such as state-of-the-art sound stages, advanced special effects studios, and large teams of writers, directors, and producers, not to mention big budgets and access to big name talent in front and behind the camera.
Large companies at the top of these pyramids typically have a pipeline of films and TV shows in various stages of development, pre-production, production, and post-production. This allows them to release multiple titles in a given year, with some companies releasing as many as 10-15 films or TV shows annually.
In the middle section of the pyramid’s structure we find mid-sized production companies. These companies are sometimes newly formed as a subsidiary of a larger (sometimes international) production company or have completed one or two successful productions. They are often independent and have begun to establish a brand name / reputation in the industry. Mid-sized companies may not have access to the same resources as larger companies, but they are often more nimble and adaptable, able to pivot and adapt to changing market conditions while churning out industry leading content. Mid-sized companies often focus on producing one or two high-quality films or TV shows per year, rather than churning out multiple titles.
At the base of the pyramid are small production companies, which include independent filmmakers, micro-budget production companies, and short film producers. These companies often operate with limited resources, relying on crowdfunding, grants, and other non-traditional financing methods to fund their projects. Small companies may produce short films, web series, or low-budget indie features, with budgets ranging from a few thousand dollars to a few hundred thousand dollars.
Small companies face significant challenges in the highly competitive film and TV industry. They may struggle to secure financing, distribution, and marketing for their projects. However, small companies also have the advantage of being able to take risks, experiment with new ideas, and push boundaries in terms of storytelling and visual style. Many successful filmmakers and TV creators began their careers with small production companies, using their experience to build a reputation and move up the pyramid to larger companies.