Tag Archives: shooting stage

Create A Movie Crew

A crew is your “body”. Creating a movie crew is like creating your own body. Like a movie director, you must unite people under one organized command or you’ll fail in all your movie projects, and people will never go back to you. That means your career will crash for a long-long time, or even forever. It may sound ominous, but it’s realistic.

Therefore, before directing a movie, you must determine what you will do and how you will do it. First of all, you should ask yourself: “Do I really have steel nerves and patience, or not?” If you’re fragile, if you find it hard to adapt, if you’re afraid of unexpected changes and unpredictable situations, if you’re nervous and have no clear ideas about what to do in the next step, boy, all bets are off!

This is maybe more psychological than technical, but you must know the golden rules to overcome all obstacles. I’ve gathered the common rules that might help you work for yourself. However, you must acknowledge that there is no “successful movie director formula”, or “recipe”, it’s just advice that can help you develop what you already have.

[note_box]REMEMBER THIS[/note_box]

  • Before the rehearsal, write an extended character development of your movie script, print it out, and give it to all your actors. The actors must like their roles and know all the particulars about the characters.

  • Write a plan that lists all the steps. Before entering the shooting zone, learn all the steps. Make a plan A, a plan B, and maybe a plan C.

  • Write all the necessary questions down on paper, learn them and then burn it. Yes burn it, and never carry it with you on paper, only in your head. If you speak with people with that paper in hand, they will regard you as mad.

  • Don’t be ashamed to ask your first assistant “how to make it better”, or “how it works”. It’s his responsibility to provide you with advice during the shooting process. By the way, we’re all learning as we go; even if you have an amazing theory, but no practice, it can crash in one second.

  • Never say things like “I don’t know,” “I have no idea”, “something like that”, “check it out yourself”, or “I don’t care”. These negative words will only show to others that you’re not interested in your own movie project, which is paradoxal and silly coming from a movie director.

  • Create a positive atmosphere. A movie director is like a live generator. If you fail in some steps, don’t blame your crew or actors. It’s better to find the humor in it and try it again.

  • Never abuse your actors for wrong actions, just try to explain the role in different terms again.

  • After every shoot encourage your actors and operator staff saying, “You were great!”, or “Good job!”

  • Don’t forget about lunch time. Provide the food and water yourself. Eat the same food as everyone else to instill the notion that you are all part of the same crew.

  • Sometimes give your crew a decent break period. For example, allow them an extended break if they just participated in a very long and sophisticated shot, engaged in dangerous stunts or acted in harsh weather conditions. Never give your crew unreasonably short breaks. Don’t be a slacker and don’t waste your time just showing how “powerful” or “merciful” you are.

  • Don’t buy any unwanted stuff, even if you’re working with a big producer who has a $300 million budget.

  • Remember the names and telephone numbers of all crew members.

  • Don’t create pets or/and scapegoats!

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