Check out producer (and iW blogger) Ted Hope's 99 Recommended Steps for Making Good Movies:
1. Maintain wonder & love for the world & most/some of the people.
2. Recognize the barriers & be empowered by my desire for change.
3. Find an inspiring idea & the correct collaborator for it.
4. Maintain love & respect for the film industry.
5. Develop script.
6. Fall in love with project.
7. Get non-financier, non-buyer industry types to give feedback on script.
8. Maintain wonder & love for the process.
9. Further develop script.
10. Maintain respect for collaborator(s).
11. Identify audience & market for project.
12. Enhance my enthusiasm for potential of the results of audience engagement with ambitious cinema.
13. Develop additional materials to properly contextualize project, like image books (aka look books), reference material, blog posts, etc.
14. Try to locate audience and key influencers for the project.
15. Develop transmedia extensions (I know I should do this earlier).
16. Encourage Filmmaker to engage with True Fans (i.e. build community).
17. Strategize production process.
18. Ballpark budget.
19. Evaluate potential cast for project.
20. Consider possible shooting locations.
21. Introduce Writer/Director to US Talent Agencies if necessary.
22. Have Director meet wide range of actors.
23. Strategize financing.
24. Strategize casting process.
25. Develop financing plan.
26. Execute casting process strategy.
27. Attach lead actor.
28. Attach another actor (or two).
29. Revise financing plan as necessary.
30. Revise script as necessary.
31. Estimate possible profit & losses.
32. Revise financing plan as necessary.
33. Approach sales agents.
34. Get foreign sales estimates & foreign sales deal terms.
35. Revise financing plan.
36. Budget, ideally in multiple variations.
37. Approach private equity.
38. Revise financing plan.
39. Revise script as necessary.
40. Get verbal commitments from private equity.
41. Determine most appropriate & then secure sales agent.
42. Continue to source additional financing.
43. Revise financing plan.
44. Revise script as necessary.
45. Develop initial outreach, engagement, awareness strategy.
46. Consider and possibly secure a presale or three.
47. Revise financing plan.
48. Revise script as necessary.
49. Revise Budget.
50. Consider and possibly secure gap & mezzanine financing if necessary.
51-99 are here.