Independent film VS Mainstream filmMainstream film is described as films that are widely released in cinemas, often created in the machine that is Hollywood. Typical Mainstream films are released in cinemas for a short period of time and are marketed to attract mass audiences and create revenue. The primary function of a mainstream film is to make money and create synergy and franchise.
Independent film or 'Indie film' are films that are produced outside a major film studio and are distinguished by both the style and the artistic manner in which the director chooses to show them. Independent films have a considerably lower budget than mainstream films and are marketed completely different due to their function of showing artistic value and not making money.
Some of the main differences are things like the actors. In mainstream, actors are often used to attract audiences and fans of the actor to the movie, and are one of the main attractions of the film. But in indie cinema, actors are often unknown, and are not in any way used to create revenue, but instead used because they are the cheapest option, or required.
Mainstream cinema often build sets, and travel all over the world to get exactly what they need for production, whereas indie cinema would need to use what they have, and often, film in the same location, with one or two shots that are not in the same place. This is because it is the cheapest option, but also, still very effective in portraying the story. One example of both of these, is the Indie film 'Clerks', this film was shot in one convenience store, with the exception of 3 shots, and the interior shots were filmed at night to keep the store open, as he only worked there. Also the actors in it were not A-list actors, but the directors friends, and they acted for free, showing the huge difference between independent and mainstream cinema.
A third difference are the marketing strategies used. Independent cinema have very small marketing campaigns, and often don't advertise anywhere, and are spread through film festivals, critics, reviews and word of mouth. But mainstream films have multi-million campaigns, using billboards, internet, TV adverts, and every single method possible to get the film into the public consciousness.
Overall, the main difference between the two is money. Money is used to get actors, sets, locations and marketing, and how they are distributed. And indie cinema utilize what they have, and often make very successful movies with small budget and locations.