No Film School: 13 Things New Filmmakers Should Consider But Rarely Do

Posted August 16, 2016
Share To

When just starting out as a video producer it can be difficult to set expectations, meet goals, and deliver a product.  Many young and starting filmmakers suffer from the all talk no walk syndrome -- always a project in the pipeline, never anything produced. 

No Film School has some tips for these very people, and if that's you read closely.  These tips will help make sure your first productions go well and get you on the path to pro status.  Some of the tips include, start editing before you end shooting, bigger isn't always better, and much more.

No Film School:

13.  Be able to finish it

Don’t start filming if you lack the resources (time, money, personnel) to finish it completely. Budget properly and don't start if you don't have all the money. Nothing generates harder feelings from your cast, crew, or financiers than an unfinished film. Sounds like something your grandfather might say, but it’s true. If you’re hoping for a distributor or an angel financier to help you finish your film, you might wait forever. If you don’t have everything you need to get the job done, you run the risk of having good people not sign on to your project at all, or bail after you’ve started.

12. Have a backup plan

If you have an experienced and professional crew, which you will, and they are working for very little, which they are, one or two of them may leave for a better paying job. Be ready to fill those gaps in a moment’s notice by discussing a back-up plan with your keys during pre-production. Your keys will now know which crew members are capable of moving up or who to call to fill in a gap quickly if someone has to drop out of the shoot. 

11.  Block or die

Whether it’s a no budget, low budget or larger budget shoot, blocking and shot lists are essential for good communication between you and your department heads. They also ensure a more efficient shoot, and more importantly, stave off potential time-related disasters that could derail or kill your film. They are, in my opinion, the most important things you can prepare to make sure you have a successful shoot. The cast, crew and financiers will know who’s in charge by how you prepare. Time burns money and there’s never enough time on a lower budget film. The best way to get more time is to pre-block for action (actors movement) and pre-block for camera (where the camera stands and moves). Pre-blocking and floor plans are two of the simplest but most misunderstood and disregarded parts of the preproduction process. Get sample shot lists here.

Read the rest of the tips here.


Recent Posts

Bad News, Good News
June 17, 2024

The old news mantra — if it bleeds, it leads has been replaced by if it’s gross, adios. The prospect of a news-free electorate is terrifying.

The news business is in trouble. In the past decade, more than 2400 local newspapers have closed. NBC Nightly News gets 5 million viewers per night, in a nation of 340 million people, so most people are not watching. What are they watching? Netflix.

For most of human history, people lived in a world without news. The concept simply did not exist. The idea of news is really a 19th-century phenomenon, driven first by newspapers, and then by electronic media which brought us radio, then TV and now the web. Now, it seems, we are headed back to a world without news. Not because the technology is not there, but rather because, increasingly, people are no longer interested in news, at least in the way it is packaged now.

Share Page on: