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How do you become a director?


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Bob’s Answer

Hello... For me it was all about learning on the go. I had spent a lot of time as an actor and started watching everything else that was going on around me. I wanted to go into the production side of things so I found mentors that could help me with all the different aspects behind the camera.

YouTube is a great help for most of the things you'll need when it comes to lighting, filming, and other aspects like editing, but directing is about you and the vision you want others to see.

For that you just have to start shooting what you can as often as you can. See how it comes out. try different things. Keep going until you start to find what works for you.

Everyone has their eye, their vision. Go find yours and then keep refining it.

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Steven’s Answer

Hello Christian-

Your question is broad and big, and there is no way I, or anyone else as far as I can tell, can give you "the" answer. You have to love films, and be willing to watch hundreds (start with a few dozen) of them. If you're obsessed with stories and have the patience to watch all sorts of movies from different time periods, different cultures, compare them, come up with criteria of why you like certain ones and really don't like others, then that's at least a beginning of the road.

While you're off on that journey you can start playing with any recording device you have (phone, dslr, anything that records moving images, basically, and start putting together shots, little stories, etc... Keep watching and keep making. Show them to friends and family (or whomever you feel comfortable showing them to) and get feedback. Sometimes honest feedback can be painful, but it helps you get over the idea that everyone should love everything you do, which is an important thing to get over. Keep watching and keep making and eventually you'll find out if this is a truly satisfying thing for you.

Film schools are out there, obviously, and they are incredibly useful, and often expensive. That's one option, though.

Volunteering to work on independent film crews to get more perspective and experience is also a great learning tool. Don't expect them to give you something glamorous to do at the start (or even pay you right away). My first "real" film job was literally standing out on the street all day on a hot summer day in L.A. We were filming a show for PBS on location, and when any of the residents moved a car that was parked on the street I got on a walkie talkie and told one of the Assistant Directors that a spot had opened up, and where it was. Then I went and stood in the parking space until one of the crew members showed up and parked his/her car in the spot. I did that all day, and kept thinking how useless it all seemed, and how I was too smart to do such a boring job all day. Then, when it got dark out, the entire crew came out and everyone moved their cars. The street was vacant. A water truck showed up and watered the entire street and sidewalks so it looked like it had just rained. I still had no idea what was going on. Then suddenly our main actors and the entire crew showed up on my block and we shot a key night scene in which the main characters, a couple, walked for 2 blocks with cameras alongside them, in front of them, and behind them (different takes). A water truck came by and wet the entire street, which suddenly looked beautiful. If I hadn't gotten all the parking spaces, the angles for the camera to shoot the scene completely (this is called "coverage") wouldn't have been available, or the production would have had to pay the city thousands of dollars to clear the street, money they clearly didn't have. Sorry for the long-ish story, but the point is that you learn something from every experience, as long as people treat you fairly. Best of luck!

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Mark’s Answer

Hi Christian,
Why not start paying attention to the movies being distributed mainstream? Also, take a look at what movies are distributed on Netflix, Amazon and Hulu. Then read the websites. The best are Studio 32, Deadlines, Variety (yes, online) and for info pay $19.95 monthly for IMDBPro. Then consider what could you film? The crowdfunding and donations from friends and family members might provide at least $20,000. You could submit your short film to the film festivals. Of course, ask yourself while studying it if you actually enjoyed the work. Yes, it's a tough job. It's art, and it's business. It's fantastic to dream a scene or two, and the next morning write what you saw. Yes, it's your vision coming true that you will help solve the daily conflicts of people. Best luck, Mark

thank you mark. I have some ideas for some movies that (if I get the fundings for) I will make. this has been very help full. -chris christian L.

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Lakeshia’s Answer

I'm not very familiar with the film industry, but I think this link will be helpful: https://www.bls.gov/ooh/entertainment-and-sports/producers-and-directors.htm

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Sushan’s Answer

hello, More and more schools are offering bachelor’s and master’s in film directing. Most film directors typically hold a bachelor’s in film or a related field and have several years of work experience. They often begin their film directing career as a film editor, actor, or assistant to an established director.


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