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What do you do when you start from ZERO?


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#1 Jia Cheng Tan

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Posted 11 September 2012 - 04:35 AM

Hi guys, I guess we all know the film industry isn't as nice as it sounds. But I wanna ask you directors out there. What do you have with you the moment you step out of film-making college,is it nothing? And how would you guys start off your career on the way to a blast with what you have. Your advice is highly appreciated.

I'm a total newbie looking at the future which I have totally I have no idea what am I dealing with. Just a high school student with one more year left before I crash my life or make good out of it.
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#2 James Silver

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 04:36 PM

Network while in college, make movies in college with other eager kids. I remember going to college and most kids COMPLAINED about being assigned a movie project. Also try to get into any gigs you can on set to see how a professional set operates, it shouldn't be too difficult to get a PA gig on set. They pay bad and the work sucks, but you can see how a real movie operates. Even if it is a low budget production, especially if it is a low budget production you can learn how to cut corners.
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#3 Richard Boddington

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 12:30 AM

is it nothing?


I hope you have more than that, otherwise it was a total waste of time, wasn't it?

R,
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#4 Matthew W. Phillips

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 01:53 AM

Get a day job, pick up some real experience by working (even for free) on others sets. Take note of things they do right and things they do wrong. Imagine how you would manage your set. Think of how you would communicate to others how to execute your vision. Save some money and get a crew/cast together and make a short. Then make another one. Once you've made a short that you actually aren't ashamed of people seeing, try some fests. Do that for awhile and if you still don't get where you want, raise funds for a feature. Try to distribute it or self distribute if that doesn't work. Absolutely refuse to accept defeat and don't be discouraged. Why would anyone want to trust you if you don't even believe in yourself?

As a Director, even if you have weaknesses, you cant show them. Answer every question even if you're wrong. It seems silly but people get flighty when they think you aren't in control. This is especially true if folks work for free. Be a leader.
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#5 Alexandru Moraras

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Posted 22 January 2013 - 05:18 AM

Hello, I'm new here. I'll tell you my story, and hope it helps. Now, I'm not in the film industry, I'm just a Continuity Supervisor in a Hunting and Fishing Tv channel in Spain, where I live. But most of all I like directing. I began by attending to a private film school in Madrid, and the directing career is about 3 years, but I dropped out after the second year cause I could not afford it anymore. Instead I bought a video camera that I still have and use, a sony Z7, and began working as a phone operator. This sucks; I know but bear with me... Meanwhile I began studding software as adobe premiere, after effects and autodesk maya, and that led me to work in my current job. It was luck also, but for the luck to be transformed into fact you have to be ready. I’m still trying to get into the film industry, but well, in the meanwhile I get to increase my editing experience and also shoot some documentaries, and still trying to learn more about visual effects and hopefully begin directing quality shorts or maybe a pilot. So hope this helps.
Best Regards!
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#6 James Steven Beverly

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 01:14 PM

"Hi guys, I guess we all know the film industry isn't as nice as it sounds. But I wanna ask you directors out there. What do you have with you the moment you step out of film-making college,is it nothing? And how would you guys start off your career on the way to a blast with what you have. Your advice is highly appreciated.



I'm a total newbie looking at the future which I have totally I have no idea what am I dealing with. Just a high school student with one more year left before I crash my life or make good out of it."

 

This isn't brain surgery, dude. Sit down in front of your computer and write a script, preferably something commercial that you can shoot in a week (Corman did The Little Shop of Horrors in 3 days) with a small cast, no CGI (UNLESS you have someone willing to do it on a few small small sequences and WILL get it done) and make with what you have available (IE horror because you don't need a name cast and horror is the best return on investment genre bar none). You refine it until it's GREAT, not good, Great then you put together a schedule, find the BEST local actors you can find and have them sign a deferred payment agreement at SAGs ultra low budget agreement which is only fair if you end up making money on it and model releases,t (make sure they're 18 or older) Make sure you can at least feed them one meal a day, secure your locations and props, costumes make up hair ect. Get some work lights and gel, a decent mic and a decent camera with a tripod. Rehearse them, shoot the footage, edit it on your computer then look for distribution. If it's good it will sell but you probably won't make a dime. Who cares, because you will have made a movie that got distribution so you WILL make money on the next one. It's a formula that's worked over and over again. I suggest you look up in the archives Richard Boddington's threads on "Dark Reprieve" it is a textbook example of self reliance that leads to a successful career. Don't tell him this, but I think Richie is a freakin' genus and aman that should be emulated. 


Edited by James Steven Beverly, 07 March 2013 - 01:16 PM.

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#7 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 01:41 PM

Producing it isn't brain surgery; getting it distributed is.


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#8 James Steven Beverly

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 02:08 PM

Producing it isn't brain surgery; getting it distributed is.

 

Not really, you have a good commercial property done well, it will sell. The "Brain Surgery" comes in making the right deal. It ALL comes down to the deal.
 


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