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Filmmakers need to have multiple skills at their disposal. In fact, filmmakers must be considered not only as creatives, but as entrepreneurs and business people.
Use what is available to you
This tip applies to available material objects, your own knowledge/history and your skills as a filmmaker.
For example, you might hear about a film contest starting tomorrow. But you may not have time to gather all the resources you would ideally want for your project. However, you may be able to make the landscape around you work for your project. This way, you can show off your ingenuity to everyone who sees your movie.
Plus, if you grew up in rural Arkansas, you could easily make a great movie about the experience. Many other filmmakers wouldn’t be able to capture it so accurately.
Consume as much media as possible
If you want to be the best, you need to study the best. Chances are you’ll probably never make a movie as iconic as Citizen Kane. But you should always study amazing movies like this so you can learn the intricacies of great movies. Plus, watching and studying these movies with a critical eye will let you see just how much thought, effort, and skill goes into creating a great movie.
Plus, you’ll want to read and listen to as many different media formats as possible. Audio books, podcasts and pocket books contain a multitude of information that can be used by filmmakers and all creatives.
Even better, you can consume any genre of media and take some of the good and bad out of it. For example, you can read a Stephen King novel and take note of some story elements that you might have done differently. Then you can watch the film based on the book (Stephen King is perhaps the best person to use for this crossover) and see how the filmmakers brought the story to life. There will be certain choices they have to make to make the movie work on the screen rather than the page.
Podcasts and audio books (fiction and non-fiction) can even be appreciated while you perform another independent task. Multitasking can maximize the time you spend learning the craft.
Develop an entrepreneurial dynamic
As an aspiring filmmaker, you’re probably very focused on creating a great product. You want to find the best plans, choose the best actors and create the film you have always imagined in your head.
These things are all absolutely important for filmmakers of all skill and experience levels. However, you also need to ensure that you approach your projects with an entrepreneurial spirit. You should attempt to link up with all the big names in the industry so that you can get your foot in the door.
You may already know this, but that entrepreneurial mindset should also stay in place for the rest of your career. You can never start giving an effort without enthusiasm or you will lose your audience and your supporters as quickly as you have won them.
Never stop learning
At the start of his career, the Mike Tyson boxer was known to watch hours and hours of film on his opponents before each match. He quickly became one of the most talented and powerful boxers of all time. But Tyson knew that if he got comfortable and rested on his laurels, he’d end up flat out (coincidentally, that’s exactly what happened later in his career).
Cinema is no different. If you get too comfortable with your skills and don’t keep learning new techniques throughout your career, your projects will suffer.
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Be respectful to everyone
This point (see number new) comes from the emblematic director Spike Lee.
When you make a film, you will need to work with large groups of actors and get permission to use certain locations. If you’re rude and arrogant during this process, you’ll quickly find that the actors won’t want to work with you and the owners won’t let you back.
For this reason, you should always respect everyone involved in a movie project, no matter how big or small the role they may play.
Think like a businessman
As indicated in the introduction, cinema must be considered both a creative pursuit and an opportunity to earn money. In the end, even if we don’t all want to admit it, money makes the world go round.
Chances are you need to convince a number of people to invest in your project. In some cases and for some topics, you may receive charitable investments from those who believe in your mission. But for the vast majority of time, those who have contributed to your project will wish a significant return on their investment.
For this reason, you need to learn business and negotiation skills. You should spend time learning how to talk to investors and convince them to believe in your project. Vous n’aurez pas un énorme succès sur chacun de vos projets. But you should go ahead with everyone believing you’re working on the next Star Wars movie (or whatever famous, high-grossing movie you prefer).
Related: This Film Crew Found Success on YouTube Making Short Films…
Most important: never give up
Je suis désolé si cela semble dur, mais vous allez échouer. And, you will fail again and again. You are going to have reviews that will absolutely pan your movie. Also, people who can give you feedback that will make you reconsider your passion.
Ne laissez pas cette négativité vous atteindre. If you really love cinema and want to create something that will be enjoyed by the masses, you are going to face rejection. And you’re going to feel like a failure. Mais quoi qu’il arrive : n’abandonnez jamais votre rêve.
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