How To Get Started In Film Making

Every time after watching a great movie, few people sit back and think about how much work filmmakers put into making it and want to know how much the actors paid or what budget the film was on, but it’s impossible to know until you’ve been through the process yourself.

Being a filmmaker / starting a film career is not for the faint of heart. Indeed, whatever heart you have, when you start film making you better be ready to weather a storm of humiliation, or be shatterproof or may get so broken and damaged that you barely feel the pain.

This article will provide you beginner’s guide to the filmmaking process. Let’s have a look at it!

Basic Steps To Start Film Making

Step 1. The Idea

Every movie you’ve seen started with an idea in someone’s brain. Although things change over the course of the project, the story you have at the beginning will serve as the basis for everything else. Start thinking about the type of story you want your film to tell and all the important story elements involved: plot, characters, conflict, etc.

Our tip

Ideas come to our minds unexpectedly! Make sure to always carry your phone or writing equipment to take down any cool ideas that enrich your story.

It’s also a good idea to create a folder to keep newspaper and magazine articles, snippets of overheard dialogue, notes about characters you see on the street and even dreams. You may not know what to do with these things now except for the day will come when you do.

Step 2. The Script

The script is where you write down the story, setting, and dialogue in a linear form. This important tool will be used by the rest of the team to find out what is going to happen in the film. You’ll use your own script as a reference throughout the process as well since you may need to update yourself on certain actions, dialogue lines, and more.

Our tip

Don’t be afraid to make changes to the script even if you think it’s ready. Most of the time you will come up with better ideas well after this phase in the filmmaking process.

And don’t be afraid to let your actors improvise, whether it’s in rehearsal or on the set. You might be surprised at what your actors are able to imagine from their character’s point of view. This is especially true for filmmakers who may not be great at writing dialogue.

Step 3. The Storyboards

A storyboard is a series of drawings that represent the shots you want to capture for the film. We strongly recommend this process as it will help you to visualize each scene and decide on things like camera angles, frame sizes, etc. You’ll discover the real value of your storyboard when it helps to convey what you’re trying to go for to other people on the set.

And for those of you who think, “I can’t draw,” taking pictures of your storyboards can be a quick fix. Your camera phone is well suited for this. Just bring a few friends over to your location and tell them, “You stand here, you stand there,” and take pictures.

Then choose the ones you like the most and there’s your storyboard. Doing this has the added benefit of showing you what is really possible. Because we often draw storyboards, and then realize to our disappointment, that w e would have to tear down a wall in order to get the perspective that we’ve imagined.

Step 4. The Cast and Crew

Bringing your team together can be both exciting and stressful. We recommend you take as much time as needed to find the right people for your film. For crew members, be sure to consider their past work and experience, and request showreels or any examples if available. You should also hold auditions to find the best actors and actresses for your roles.

Our tip

Don’t feel obligated to include friends and family in your project. This is your film, which means choosing the best people for the job. Hopefully, your acquaintances are professional enough to accept when you don’t think they’re a fit for your project.

Step 5. The Locations

You may need to construct sets for a setting you’d like to have. But for scenes where an actual location will do, you’ll need to do some scouting to find the best spots. Take a camera with you and do as much traveling as possible, snapping shots of places you think will serve as the perfect setting for particular scenes.

Our tip

Always consider the space required by the cast and crew. Don’t choose a cramped, narrow space where only the actors will fit well and not the cameras, lights, etc.

Step 6. The Filming

It all comes down to this. To prepare, be sure to have a shooting script ready along with an organized schedule of what will be filmed when. Give yourself plenty of time to shoot scenes so that you’re never rushed and can accommodate for changes or problems. It’s common for a scene that will last one minute in the final cut to require more than five hours to film.

Our tip

If time permits, try filming the same scenes from new angles. This way, you’ll have more footage to work with that can keep your viewers engaged.

Step 7. The Post-Production

If you thought filming took time, you were wrong. Post-production is when you edit all your footage to create a rough cut of the film. Once done with the rough cut, you’ll begin adding things like sound effects, music, visual effects, and color correction. This process will require the use of editing software — if you’re not confident, feel free to find/hire an experienced editor.

Our tip

Before you polish up your rough cut, show it to people whose opinions you can trust. It’s better that you find out what isn’t working now rather than when your audience is watching the final version.

To Sum Up

Film-making is a great career to learn new skills. If you want to learn filmmaking then this article will surely help you to learn basic steps to start filmmaking.


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