Here is a pretty good little article by guy named James Stern. It's about little indies competing with the big boys and what we need to do to stay in the game. What I like about his article is it's not pretentious like some many other independent cinema articles, which talk about art and message and all that bullshit. This guy says, fuck it, you wanna make cheesy horror pics or raunchy teen comedies, go do it, just know what you're getting in to before you shoot your first frame. He says there are 3 rules to filmmaking...
#1 Make Smarter Movies. Again, he's not talking about being a director with some rule-breaking vision of cinema, but rather knowing your audience and understanding the ENTIRE process of filmmaking from fiance to distribution and marketing, so you can create a solid, smart product.
#2 Respect the Money. Such a great rule to live by. For starters, if you have investors you have to treat it like a business. They want their money back, maybe even a profit. Lose sight of that and you might as well make movies while filling out fast food applications 'cause you won't last long. Also, even though you're spending someone else's money, act like it's your own. Don't spend it on frivolous shit that can be done with a little more hard work or ingenuity.
#3 Before the Camera Rolls.... Think 'Market'. This basically means knowing you have to drive people to your movie once you make it. Hey, this isn't Field of Dreams If-You-Make-It-They-Will-Come shit. Most likely if you make it no one will know unless you market the hell out of it.
This is good stuff here, guys. Even though we current apply all these rules we never really set them as "rules". But now I understand that many people do NOT apply these rules, so this article is a perfect read.