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ABOUT DIRECTOR JOB

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Film Jobs

Film Director

The Director is the driving creative force in a film's production, and acts as the crucial link between the production, technical and creative teams. Directors are responsible for creatively translating the film's written script into actual images and sounds on the screen - he or she must visualise and define the style and structure of the film, then act as both a storyteller and team leader to bring this vision to reality. Directors' main duties include casting, script editing, shot composition, shot selection and editing. While the practical aspects of filmmaking, such as finance and marketing, are left to the Producer, Directors must also always be aware of the constraints of the film's budget and schedule. In some cases, Directors assume multiple roles such as Director/Producer or Director/Writer. Being a Director requires great creative vision, dedication and commitment. Directors are ultimately responsible for a film's artistic and commercial success or failure.

Responsibilities

Directors may write the film's script or commission it to be written; or they may be hired after an early draft of the script is complete. Directors must then develop a vision for the finished film, and define a practical route for achieving it. During pre-production, Directors make crucial decisions, such as selecting the right cast, crew and locations for the film. They then direct rehearsals, and the performances of the actors once the film is in production. Directors also manage the technical aspects of filming, including the camera, sound, lighting, design and special effects departments. During post- production, Directors work closely with Editors through the many technical processes of editing, to reach the final cut or version of the film. At all stages, Directors are responsible for motivating the team to produce the best possible results. Directors must also appreciate the needs and expectations of the film's financiers.

Skills

Directors must have exceptional artistic vision and creative skills to develop an engaging and original film. Unerring commitment and a deep passion for filmmaking are essential, along with the ability to act as a strong and confident leader. Directors must constantly make decisions, but must also be able to delegate, and to collaborate with others. Excellent communication and interpersonal skills are vital to get the best from the filmmaking team. Directors must inspire and motivate the team to produce the film they have envisioned. They need an extensive understanding of the entire filmmaking process, from both technical and creative points of view. A capacity for long hours of intensive work, attention to detail, and the ability to remain calm and think clearly under great pressure, are key skills for this role. Directors also need great self-belief and the determination to succeed.

Qualifications/Experience

While there are numerous training courses and reference books on directing, formal qualifications are not necessary to become a Director. Studying the art and craft of directing is important, but the role can only really be mastered through in-depth practical experience. Writing a screenplay, directing one's own short film or an amateur play, are all good starting places. Extensive industry experience is also crucial to this role; up-to-date knowledge of filmmaking techniques and equipment is vital, as is learning how to work with actors to create a performance. As many Directors work their way up over many years from entry level positions, getting work experience as a Runner on a film set or in a production office is an ideal starting point. Observing successful Directors at work, whilst immersing oneself in the practical process of filmmaking, are vital first steps on this fiercely competitive and highly challenging career path.

The Script Department

The screenplay provides a written blueprint for the entire film making process. The script development process starts either with a Screenwriter writing a 'spec' (self-financed) screenplay for sale to a production company, or with a Producer commissioning a Screenwriter to write a screenplay based on a concept, a true story, an existing screenwork (for example a cartoon or TV series), or another literary work (such as a story, novel, poem or play).

An interesting, well-written, well-structured, and properly formatted screenplay does not guarantee a good finished film, but, without one, there is almost no possibility of success, however gifted the Director, cast and crew. Experienced Screenwriters and Production companies therefore spend many years developing stories and perfecting screenplays, and many more screenplays are developed than are actually produced.

Developing a screenplay involves painstaking visualisation of every aspect of the finished film, without any certainty of the work being realised on screen. Although the Screenwriter or Screenwriters are central to the script writing process, like every other aspect of film making, development is collaborative work and typically requires the creative input of a number of other film professionals including: Script Readers, Writer's Agents, Producers, Development Executives, Script Editors, and, eventually, Directors, who are often involved in the final versions of the screenplay and shooting script. When projects are developed as part of a Screen Agency, Broadcaster, or National Lottery funded film scheme, Development Executives from these agencies and script development staff may also be involved in the process.


The Production Office

The business of filmmaking starts and finishes with the work of the Producers and of the Production Department. Without the strenuous efforts of these dynamic individuals there would be no films and no film industry. It is their role to foster a protected environment in which creative individuals can be brought together, and in which their talents may be cultivated.

Film Production is a complex business which effectively requires the setting up, running, and closing-down of a substantially sized organisation, solely for the purpose of producing a single film. Therefore, those who work in the Production Department must be highly motivated, multi-tasking individuals, who have the creative vision, the business acumen, and the single-minded determination to do whatever it takes to see that the film is made to the best of everyone's abilities.