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Peacebone
Sep 6, 2007


What do you suggest for someone who aspires to be an editor? I'm in New Orleans right now finishing up school and while Louisiana is getting a lot of films shot out here recently because of tax incentives, do you think it's wise to stick around here for a bit or move out to L.A. after college. I realize networking is key so I'm trying as much as I can to get involved in working on shoots here to gain more experience/meet more people.

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sursumdeorsum
Jan 10, 2010


Kung Fu Jesus posted:

Is everyone a pot head or coke fiend? I'm so cynical that I imagine all these clean-cut images we have of people are completely wrong and they are all actually like Lindsay Lohan, but we just don't hear about it.


I think its probably more like the real world, where everyone puts their best face forward but of course people in Hollywood share all the same vices that the rest of the world does.

Im interested to find out about Michael Bay, and why people dislike him so. People always speak about Michael Bay and James Cameron as if they are tyrannical, but no one can ever give any examples of their behavior. The only real gripe Ive heard was from Kate Winslet whom complained about the cold water during filming Titanic.

Darko
Dec 23, 2004

Distrusting me was the wisest thing you've done.

sursumdeorsum posted:

I think its probably more like the real world, where everyone puts their best face forward but of course people in Hollywood share all the same vices that the rest of the world does.

Im interested to find out about Michael Bay, and why people dislike him so. People always speak about Michael Bay and James Cameron as if they are tyrannical, but no one can ever give any examples of their behavior. The only real gripe Ive heard was from Kate Winslet whom complained about the cold water during filming Titanic.

He cusses out his PAs on set in front of others, throws tantrums and tirades and bitches about stupid inconsequential stuff. He just acts really juvenile and counterproductive in general with people that are already overworked, tired, and stressed. Thats why stuff like the Christian Bale rant doesn't really phase me; I've seen stuff like that in degrees from directors and actors on set before, although that's not really the norm, either.

Mozzie
Oct 26, 2007


sursumdeorsum posted:

I think its probably more like the real world, where everyone puts their best face forward but of course people in Hollywood share all the same vices that the rest of the world does.

Im interested to find out about Michael Bay, and why people dislike him so. People always speak about Michael Bay and James Cameron as if they are tyrannical, but no one can ever give any examples of their behavior. The only real gripe Ive heard was from Kate Winslet whom complained about the cold water during filming Titanic.

Mr. Cameron speaking to his crew on completing shooting for Aliens

James Cameron posted:

This has been a long and difficult shoot, fraught by many problems. But the one thing that kept me going, through it all, was the certain knowledge that one day I would drive out the gate of Pinewood and never come back, and that you sorry bastards would still be here.

Darko
Dec 23, 2004

Distrusting me was the wisest thing you've done.

I think those were extenuating circumstances. From what I've read, a lot of the Aliens crew worked with Scott on Alien and had an in-crowd thing going where they didn't respect Cameron or what he was doing the whole time because he wasn't English, or Scott, and just did some "schlocky robot movie" and were collectively being a dick to him. That was more of a response to that than anything.

sursumdeorsum
Jan 10, 2010


Darko posted:

He cusses out his PAs on set in front of others, throws tantrums and tirades and bitches about stupid inconsequential stuff. He just acts really juvenile and counterproductive in general with people that are already overworked, tired, and stressed. Thats why stuff like the Christian Bale rant doesn't really phase me; I've seen stuff like that in degrees from directors and actors on set before, although that's not really the norm, either.


Okay, I think I'm starting to get it. Like Madonna in the 80's and 90's, but worse.

Not to go on and on about Hollywood bitchiness but honestly, that Christian Bale audio shocked me. It amazes me how lovely some people can be, and how some treat Money and Fame as a license to look down on the world. Hearing things like this about spoiled stars makes me really appreciate the ones who go out of their way to treat others with respect. It just goes to show, no matter how successful you get, the way you treat people is what ultimately matters, and determines what people take away from their time with you, no matter how fat your paycheck or bright your star is.

NeuroticErotica
Sep 9, 2003

Perform sex? Uh uh, I don't think I'm up to a performance, but I'll rehearse with you...



Kung Fu Jesus posted:

Is everyone a pot head or coke fiend? I'm so cynical that I imagine all these clean-cut images we have of people are completely wrong and they are all actually like Lindsay Lohan, but we just don't hear about it.

Not at all, there's all types. I'd say that alcoholism runs exceptionally high, esp in indie film, but I haven't seen that much coke use and the pot use is not unusual. Most of the time if people are using they're not out in the open about it.

Peacebone posted:

What do you suggest for someone who aspires to be an editor? I'm in New Orleans right now finishing up school and while Louisiana is getting a lot of films shot out here recently because of tax incentives, do you think it's wise to stick around here for a bit or move out to L.A. after college. I realize networking is key so I'm trying as much as I can to get involved in working on shoots here to gain more experience/meet more people.

Being an editor is exceptionally hard right now because with FCP everybody thinks they can do it. It used to be once a week there'd be an Ask/Tell thread where somebody'd say "Y'know, I don't know too much about movies, but I sure think I could edit them!" and then I'd have to school them on how ridiculously complicated and difficult it is. That said, you've actually gone to school for it, you get it, I was just ranting.

Here's the big question for you - are you able to get on these shoots IN THE DEPARTMENT YOU WANT? That's key. If you're PA'ing/Crafty/Etc. it's not going to be worth your time. Most places shoot to get tax incentives, but post back in LA - there's no incentive for you to post anywhere but here, and all of the post houses are back here.

The biggest difficulty in being an editor is being a film editor - most editors these days are working reality, because of the sheer volume of footage they shoot and the manic nature of it, you can be a less-than-great editor and be fine on it. That's all non-union anyways. What's great about the editor's union is that they let you work non-union, AND, if you're active for 15 years, you get benefits for life. A friend of mine from school got onto Tree of Life with Malick in his editorial dept. She worked the job for like two years ingesting footage, etc. and moved her way up the ladder (His editorial, unsurprisingly gets tired of the job after some time) and she's a member of the union.... at 22. She's signed on to the next one and is already making more days. At this pace she'll probably be the most successful out of all of us barring a break out indie hit.

My advice - get in somewhere, work your rear end off, know more than anybody. People think that being an editor is a lot of shot a vs shot b, but there's so much more to it. If you can be good at making HD Masters, dealing with edl files, making sure gamma levels don't change on output, Color flows, etc. The real nitty-gritty technical what-are-you-even-talking-about bullshit then you'll be valuable. Get a deliverables list - look at what it takes to deliver a film to Theatrical - both film and digital, to VOD, to Streaming, to iTunes, to Netflix and you'll be in a good place. Be the man that can get them to the money and you'll be eating.

sursumdeorsum posted:

People always speak about Michael Bay and James Cameron as if they are tyrannical, but no one can ever give any examples of their behavior. The only real gripe Ive heard was from Kate Winslet whom complained about the cold water during filming Titanic.

For Cameron it's that he demands perfection and he demands it right away because he's done your job and he's done it better than you've ever done it. You know how you imagine a project in your head and when you realize it it look different? That doesn't happen for Cameron - what he sees in his head gets made. Period. That's difficult for everybody else to handle since they can't see in there.

Cameron's a workaholic who demands the same. He doesn't get that end-of-the-day-I-Just-wanna-go-home-and-drink-a-beer feeling 12 hours in.

It's not that he's an rear end in a top hat, it's that he's demanding and tough-but-fair. He's disciplined and doesn't retreat. You'll slip up, and he'll call you on it.

Payndz
Sep 22, 2006

Your friend and protege,
Tom Copperfield.


Darko posted:

I think those were extenuating circumstances. From what I've read, a lot of the Aliens crew worked with Scott on Alien and had an in-crowd thing going where they didn't respect Cameron or what he was doing the whole time because he wasn't English, or Scott, and just did some "schlocky robot movie" and were collectively being a dick to him. That was more of a response to that than anything.
And I think that Cameron fired his original DP (or someone equally high up the ladder) after a short time following blazing arguments, which didn't endear him to the crew.

On the other hand, from what I've read the crew followed the usual British routine of the time of halting work every hour or two for a tea break, never working a minute over the scheduled stopping time and generally being bolshie "I'm all right Jack" trade unionists, so I can understand him getting pissed off.

Schweinhund
Oct 23, 2004



Are there any directors today who just shoot in the Hitchcock style where everything is story-boarded and they only shoot the exact shots they need? Rather than shooting everything from 10 angles then choosing the best angles when editing (as I understand it's generally done but could be wrong). (Not sure how that fits into "business", but the "editing is easy" discussion made me wonder about it)

mojo1701a
Oct 8, 2008

Saving the world...
at $11 an hour.



NeuroticErotica posted:

Being an editor is exceptionally hard right now because with FCP everybody thinks they can do it. It used to be once a week there'd be an Ask/Tell thread where somebody'd say "Y'know, I don't know too much about movies, but I sure think I could edit them!" and then I'd have to school them on how ridiculously complicated and difficult it is. That said, you've actually gone to school for it, you get it, I was just ranting.

Would knowing Avid put you a step above the "Hey, I can cut using Final Cut!" people? I've edited quite a bit on FCP, and I have access to Avid, and I was wondering if I should take the plunge. I had a very successful partnership with a friend who directed a student short that kept singing my praises because I edited his movie on a tight deadline (his original editor took off early and as a rough cut left him a low-res mp4 file that he was somehow expected to continue editing for him. Long story short: they were best friends, but since then they haven't even seen each other). I edited it on FCP because our school had (at the time) limited Avid computers so I didn't learn how to do it. I actually ended up editing TWO shorts while the other editors for the fourth-year projects were working on just one each while having at least two weeks to work.

quote:

My advice - get in somewhere, work your rear end off, know more than anybody. People think that being an editor is a lot of shot a vs shot b, but there's so much more to it. If you can be good at making HD Masters, dealing with edl files, making sure gamma levels don't change on output, Color flows, etc. The real nitty-gritty technical what-are-you-even-talking-about bullshit then you'll be valuable. Get a deliverables list - look at what it takes to deliver a film to Theatrical - both film and digital, to VOD, to Streaming, to iTunes, to Netflix and you'll be in a good place. Be the man that can get them to the money and you'll be eating.

I finished with a four-year Honours Communication degree at a Canadian university that also happens to have a production department (not a film school, but we get enough experience on set to know what to do and how to work with people), and in my last year, I got to TA a first-year class. One week, I had to cover for one of the other TAs, and I ended up talking with one of his students. I asked them what their regular TA taught them. Apparently, not much. Just how to start a new project... and that's it (they were supposed to experiment, but I know full well that 95% of the students that think they know FCP really just know how to edit the basics and complain when their file isn't doing what they want it to do, and they almost NEVER use the keyboard). And I thought I was wasting time when I spent an hour on Photoshop basics (when we were teaching it earlier in the semester so they could make a DVD cover).

One more question: I'm putting together a demo reel so that I can get a job doing editing in Toronto (I have no money at all to move to the States right now, let alone L.A.), and I was wondering if, considering I have limited professional/serious work, how wrong would it be for me to mention that I do side-projects for fun like most of the ones on my Youtube channel here? I'm not including them in my reel (well, except for that lighting project, since that's a legitimate video that I also did lighting on), but I was wondering if it's sort of a scale, where smaller places will consider it, or if there's a whole "you don't own it, so don't use it" thing? I ask because as an editor, you have limited footage to work with, unlike a cinematographer that can shoot stuff for themselves.

ToastyPotato
Jun 23, 2005

CONVICTED OF DISPLAYING HIS PEANUTS IN PUBLIC

Payndz posted:

And I think that Cameron fired his original DP (or someone equally high up the ladder) after a short time following blazing arguments, which didn't endear him to the crew.

On the other hand, from what I've read the crew followed the usual British routine of the time of halting work every hour or two for a tea break, never working a minute over the scheduled stopping time and generally being bolshie "I'm all right Jack" trade unionists, so I can understand him getting pissed off.

I've heard he can be pretty uncaring to his crew, in a way that he might treat them as more a means to an end or something.

Five Cent Deposit
Jun 5, 2005


Since I work I editorial I will weigh in a little later on that stuff, hopefully can add some real world perspective.

ynotony
Apr 13, 2003

Yea...this is pretty much the smartest thing I have ever done.

NeuroticErotica posted:

...but I haven't seen that much coke use and the pot use is not unusual. Most of the time if people are using they're not out in the open about it.

People aren't very shy about offering a casual hit or bump in social situations, but it's also pretty easy to steer clear of. I haven't seen much heavy use either, but I'm assuming those people are simply more discrete. In the end, it's probably more of a "Living in LA" thing than a "work in film industry" thing.

Steadiman
Jan 31, 2006

Hey...what kind of party is this? there's no booze and only one hooker!

silly sevens

I also work in the film industry, and have been in it for longer than I can remember, so maybe I could also contribute some answers from a crew perspective, if that's okay with the OP? I work as a camera/Steadicam operator and, since the last three years, also as a DoP. I've been involved in pretty much any type of production you can think of, from low end industrials to huge budget features. Any camera dept. questions, or general life-on-set questions, I'd be happy to weigh in on.

Schweinhund posted:

Are there any directors today who just shoot in the Hitchcock style where everything is story-boarded and they only shoot the exact shots they need? Rather than shooting everything from 10 angles then choosing the best angles when editing (as I understand it's generally done but could be wrong). (Not sure how that fits into "business", but the "editing is easy" discussion made me wonder about it)
There's a lot of these still out there. Probably among the most famous are the Wachowskis but many more too. It's fortunately still common but there's been a definite increase in people who just shoot everything and figure out in post what they actually want. I'm finding this more common with new/young directors. I think it's an awful way to work since you waste a huge amount of time, effort, and money on things that never end up being used. Much better to have a clear idea and shoot what you need. It's partially a confidence thing too, it takes a lot of confidence to just say "this is what we are shooting, nothing else" when you know you can't go back once you're in post. Well, you can do a pickup day but that's not ideal. So it's much easier to just shoot the crap out of everything for safety.

I find that directors coming from an editing background are very good at shooting only what they need, since they tend to have an incredibly good idea about how it's all going to cut together even while you're still shooting. I've worked with directors who already knew, down to the second, where they were going to cut and, through that, were comfortable approving less than ideal takes just because they knew they could cut around the bits that went wrong. As a result, you can go through a huge amount of setups quickly, which is how I love working. Nothing is worse than waiting around on a set while the director makes up his mind about what they actually want to see, all the while walking around saying "hmmmmm, maybe if we...no...how about we....hmmm, no". It's infuriating!

Steadiman fucked around with this message at Nov 22, 2010 around 11:42

WebDog
Jun 14, 2006


My experience is with indie films, docos and TV work in all sorts of roles.
Given it's a small city (Adelaide) it's a very take what you get industry and you can be working on a minor short film one day and then shooting someone's wedding the next.

Consequently the people who succeed are the ones without any ego who put aside any delusions that they're the next Kevin Smith (seriously gently caress him!).

Seconding the editors make nice directors bit.
Coming from an editing background I feared I was too clinical in my direction but was pretty chuffed when crew came up to me and noted how swift I was in getting setups done in comparison to other shoots where the director overshot to buggery in fear of not getting everything right and burnt out everyone's energy with meaningless coverage.

The Aussie film industry plays it very safe when it comes to productions as it's very well aware the ability to sell itself as "world cinema" in today's world is very slim.
Funding is generally via Government grants, unless you happen to get external funding via a UK group, and each year a fixed amount of cash gets allocated towards the nation's allotment towards TV and film.
Big budgets is $30 million, most films end up with a couple of million or a few hundred thousand.

Also what is considered an Australian film is based on where the cash comes from.
Australia isn't an Aussie film as the cash came from the US despite cast and crew being dinky-di.

However I'm somewhat optimistic for the future.
Given production equipment costs are dropping the ability to do more with less is increasing and that several hundred of thousands spent on film and lab tests can now be spent on developing more ambitious films as we now can get a set built as opposed to faking it in a disused warehouse that has tape everywhere warning people not to go near the asbestos.

But the flipside is that any kid with an iPhone can try and make a film "Hey it films in HD, sweet!".
Thankfully there's still an exclusivity to the art and it's very easy to pick out people who's downloaded a copy of FCP and cobbled together something vs someone who understands what persistence of vision and graphic bridges mean.

Some things I've learnt from working in such a tiny industry.

The walls have ears
If you're a dick or very crap at your job people will likely know before you're out of AFTRS. Given places like Adelaide has six degrees of separation and many fish in the pond a bad attitude can easily shred your prospects as you're easily replaced.

Know thy crew
Crew make the movie, not the director.
I've worked with one (as an AD) who's idea of directing was to sit away from everyone and direct via an LCD monitor.
He knew no one's names, short of the main production heads, everyone was "you".
Plus being a director does not entitle you to wipe a wet clipboard dry on someone's back.
I've personally made it my point to match names to faces on any production.
To quote Dale Carnegie "Everyone loves the sound of their own name".

Know your crew's roles
Case in point : an AD who randomly called for takes, right as the DOP was in the middle of sliding on a lens.
Or if directing, it is invaluable to have some knowledge of the technical process behind things, getting lovely at a crew member for taking so long to setup lights is pointless if you're ignorant about what they need to do.
Plus it helps in communication, your crew is part of the creative process they're not drones.

It cannot be fixed in post
Case in point; an indie director who failed to check his equipment and ignored his crew's request to check the footage.
Subsequently they discovered at the end that something had died in the camera's recording mechanism and lost two days of shooting and wasted the cash allocated to them, no amount of sympathy plea is getting you funding for a reshoot.
Only you are going to pay for your mistakes in the end, either with time or money.
Yes it might take five minutes to check, but it will save hours later on.

Network
LinkedIn is pretty good for keeping it professional.
If you're humble enough you can score deep discounts on equipment if you're just starting off.

Grow a spine
You will be yelled at. Understand that it's not personal and in some way's rather healthy to vent in trying times.
90% of the time a poo poo day is reset by a bitch at the pub.
A professional is someone who shows up the next day and gets back to work regardless of whatever spat occurred the day before.

But if you're doing the yelling, take them around the back "for a quick word about this scene".
Also remember to turn off your mic when berating someone during a multicam shoot (or at the worst mute the other channels).

WebDog fucked around with this message at Nov 22, 2010 around 13:42

therattle
Jul 24, 2007

I'm a family man - I run a family business. This is my son and my partner, H.W.


Schweinhund posted:

Are there any directors today who just shoot in the Hitchcock style where everything is story-boarded and they only shoot the exact shots they need? Rather than shooting everything from 10 angles then choosing the best angles when editing (as I understand it's generally done but could be wrong). (Not sure how that fits into "business", but the "editing is easy" discussion made me wonder about it)

Cronenberg pretty much only shoots what he'll need, since he has most of the film mapped out in his head; it makes shooting with him a pleasure. A Dangerous Method finished two days early because of that (plus the generous schedule he requested and got).

InfiniteZero
Sep 11, 2004

PINK GUITAR FIRE ROBOT



NeuroticErotica posted:

The best example ever of a director leaving an impression is Abel Ferrara working on the first couple episodes of Miami Vice. He established a style and grammar that established the series and revolutionized television for years to come. Much love to Abel Ferrara that's my boy. He made dope movies and was addicted to dope but got clean. Shouts out to Abel Ferrara!

I think I'm missing a joke here. What's with the "my boy" part? Is that a reference to one of his films?

Barometer
Sep 23, 2007

You travelled a long way for
"I don't know", sonny.


InfiniteZero posted:

I think I'm missing a joke here. What's with the "my boy" part? Is that a reference to one of his films?

You've never heard anyone say "that's my boy" before?


Edit; Also I am patiently waiting for my gossip!

InfiniteZero
Sep 11, 2004

PINK GUITAR FIRE ROBOT



Barometer posted:

You've never heard anyone say "that's my boy" before?

I have but only in a way that implies mentorship -- so it seems odd for somebody who probably wasn't even born back when he was doing stuff like writing for Miami Vice to refer to him as "my boy".

If I'm missing a reference, I have to know! If I'm just uncool and it's normally alright to refer to somebody much more older and experienced than you that way, I'm fine with that. I'm used to being uncool, but I hate missing references.

NeuroticErotica
Sep 9, 2003

Perform sex? Uh uh, I don't think I'm up to a performance, but I'll rehearse with you...



InfiniteZero posted:

I have but only in a way that implies mentorship -- so it seems odd for somebody who probably wasn't even born back when he was doing stuff like writing for Miami Vice to refer to him as "my boy".

If I'm missing a reference, I have to know! If I'm just uncool and it's normally alright to refer to somebody much more older and experienced than you that way, I'm fine with that. I'm used to being uncool, but I hate missing references.

I just had a big ol' post eaten up by the internet, but lemme get to this one...

Go listen to an Abel Ferrara commentary. You can thank me later.

Barometer
Sep 23, 2007

You travelled a long way for
"I don't know", sonny.


InfiniteZero posted:

I have but only in a way that implies mentorship -- so it seems odd for somebody who probably wasn't even born back when he was doing stuff like writing for Miami Vice to refer to him as "my boy".

If I'm missing a reference, I have to know! If I'm just uncool and it's normally alright to refer to somebody much more older and experienced than you that way, I'm fine with that. I'm used to being uncool, but I hate missing references.

Right on. I guess I am just more used to hearing it used more widely, both positively and negatively.

I don't think you're uncool, you've got a Cyberman avatar! If that isn't cool, then I don't know what is! (I probably don't, unless we are talking 70's and 80's and even then...my opinions on "cool" are pretty strange)

InfiniteZero
Sep 11, 2004

PINK GUITAR FIRE ROBOT



NeuroticErotica posted:

Go listen to an Abel Ferrara commentary. You can thank me later.

I feel much better now. I didn't think you'd mess with a man like Abel. Maybe it's a Bronx thing. I once met Bill Lustig and he intimidated the poo poo out of me just by sitting in a chair. Yeah, definitely a Bronx thing (or at least an old-school Bronx thing).

Note: while he did scare me, Lustig is a really nice guy, if anybody cares.

In need of tissue
Mar 26, 2007
The sleeve is no replacement

What is the best way to get into the film industry? Work on sets and try and work your way up? How do you get in touch with the people to work on their set? Or get your own films moving and submit them to festivals etc.?

Rogetz
Jan 11, 2003
Alcohol and Nicotine every morning

In need of tissue posted:

What is the best way to get into the film industry? Work on sets and try and work your way up? How do you get in touch with the people to work on their set? Or get your own films moving and submit them to festivals etc.?

Tacking on to this, how do I set myself apart as a camera man when everyone and their mother owns a video camera and is competing for the same low-level jobs? I can't afford my own equipment beyond the basic stuff that I have, especially now that everyone's expecting you to be a one-man band. I've got feature credit but not on anything that anyone's heard of or going to hear of, how can I leverage that when I still don't know anyone?

AccountSupervisor
Aug 3, 2004

I am greatful for my loop pedal

NeuroticErotica posted:

Most places shoot to get tax incentives, but post back in LA - there's no incentive for you to post anywhere but here, and all of the post houses are back here.

This is simply not true and you know it.

There are TONS of post houses in NYC.

NeuroticErotica
Sep 9, 2003

Perform sex? Uh uh, I don't think I'm up to a performance, but I'll rehearse with you...



Doing this a second time because I lost my last one :/

Schweinhund posted:

Are there any directors today who just shoot in the Hitchcock style where everything is story-boarded and they only shoot the exact shots they need? Rather than shooting everything from 10 angles then choosing the best angles when editing (as I understand it's generally done but could be wrong). (Not sure how that fits into "business", but the "editing is easy" discussion made me wonder about it)

Certainly. There's as many styles as there is people out there. It's mostly old-school guys and film shooters that storyboard things out, and younger digi filmmakers that shoot everything and edit later, which can be wasteful. M. Night Shyamalan has everything mapped out before he shoots, and shoots in sequence (Meaning that instead of shooting all the scenes in one location at a time, he shoots each scene in the order that it happens in the movie. It can be wasteful, but can really help performances).


mojo1701a posted:

Would knowing Avid put you a step above the "Hey, I can cut using Final Cut!" people? I've edited quite a bit on FCP, and I have access to Avid, and I was wondering if I should take the plunge. I had a very successful partnership with a friend who directed a student short that kept singing my praises because I edited his movie on a tight deadline (his original editor took off early and as a rough cut left him a low-res mp4 file that he was somehow expected to continue editing for him. Long story short: they were best friends, but since then they haven't even seen each other). I edited it on FCP because our school had (at the time) limited Avid computers so I didn't learn how to do it. I actually ended up editing TWO shorts while the other editors for the fourth-year projects were working on just one each while having at least two weeks to work.

Lemme put it to you this way - if you own a ball club and you have the opportunity to hire a pitcher who has a curveball or one that has a curveball AND a slider, you're more likely to hire the guy who has more tools. I like Avid editors a lot and miss working with it - an editor who's trained on an Avid is much more precise and thoughtful - Avid doesn't let you just throw 100 clips into the timeline, poke 'em around and hope that you get a movie out of it. With Avid every edit is a decision. There's a reason why this shot leads to that shot at that time. There's not "Well this just happened this way", which is absolute bullshit and if you edit that way, can you please just stop?

Also, while being fast is nice, your circumstances were not theres. Every project is different.


mojo1701a posted:

One more question: I'm putting together a demo reel so that I can get a job doing editing in Toronto (I have no money at all to move to the States right now, let alone L.A.), and I was wondering if, considering I have limited professional/serious work, how wrong would it be for me to mention that I do side-projects for fun like most of the ones on my Youtube channel here? I'm not including them in my reel (well, except for that lighting project, since that's a legitimate video that I also did lighting on), but I was wondering if it's sort of a scale, where smaller places will consider it, or if there's a whole "you don't own it, so don't use it" thing? I ask because as an editor, you have limited footage to work with, unlike a cinematographer that can shoot stuff for themselves.

There's no "official" scale, but take a look at these things - are they that impressive? (This isn't me being condescending, this is me giving you the thought process) Is this something that people would say - hey, I gotta hire this guy? Also, real quick, why are you pointing out that you lit that project? Unless you're working at some small place that's going to have you be their bitch and do everything, editors don't need to light. So if that's your reason for putting it in (I didn't watch it, so it could be dope I don't know) then you need to reconsider. As for "nothing you don't own" - no DP has cleared the indie-rock song that they use on their reels, so I wouldn't worry about it. Worry about the quality of the work.

And there's always something to edit. It may not be a stellar project, and it may not pay, but there's always somebody who needs something cut.


Steadiman posted:

I also work in the film industry, and have been in it for longer than I can remember, so maybe I could also contribute some answers from a crew perspective, if that's okay with the OP?

C'mon in, I'm saving the politics and elitism for when I go into work (I'm kidding, I swear).


Steadiman posted:

I find that directors coming from an editing background are very good at shooting only what they need, since they tend to have an incredibly good idea about how it's all going to cut together even while you're still shooting.

Funny, I've known a number who came from editorial who are more prone to overshoot because they want more options - like it's them making up for all the times they were given poo poo to work with. As always, everything's always different. Editing in your head is tough and very few can do it (compared to the number who THINK they can!)

WebDog posted:

Network
LinkedIn is pretty good for keeping it professional.

Everybdoy I know who's gotten a job using social media (me included) has gotten it through facebook or twitter. Everybody has a LinkedIn, but they just approve connections and that's about it. I don't know anybody who uses it seriously. When we need somebody it's much easier to go to facebook or put out a query on twitter - why? Because, as does everybody, we'd like to either work with friends or have people volunteer for the job. Your milage may vary, of course.

Barometer posted:

Edit; Also I am patiently waiting for my gossip!

Oh poo poo, forgot about that.

The craziest thing I've ever seen - well, when I was working for the my old boss he had me pick him up at his house, which was an hour and a half outside of LA, drive him back into the city where we went to a goth book store where there was a girly magazine signing. I'd just kinda follow him around while he harassed the girls and talked to the camera and stuff, whatever. So he's there and he's kinda creepy and he starts hitting on this one girl... and she starts to respond to it. He was 70 at the time... she was 30. They hit it off and the rest of the day I'm driving all of us around while they're... canoodling. The day ended with me shooting them dancing in an empty apartment, she'd changed into a latex see-through dress and then they started dry humping on the floor and it was really gross and I just wanted to be out of there and the money really wasn't worth it.

That was the worst Valentine's Day I've ever had.


InfiniteZero posted:

I feel much better now. I didn't think you'd mess with a man like Abel.

Definitely not. I'm surprise that he's never punched Herzog for remaking Bad Lt.

In need of tissue posted:

What is the best way to get into the film industry? Work on sets and try and work your way up? How do you get in touch with the people to work on their set? Or get your own films moving and submit them to festivals etc.?

This is so vague I can't even begin to answer it. First thing's first - What do you want to do? Now, DO YOU REALLY, REALLY WANT TO DO IT? Are you willing to be poor? Are you willing to be unable to see a doctor? Are you willing to sacrifice personal relationships for it? Are you willing to let it consume you completely? No, don't just loving blindly say yes to the questions without thinking - Look them over very carefully and think about them for a while. What do you want out of life? Do you want to get married? Do you want children? Do you want to own a house? There are few people who can pull these things off while in this business - more importantly if you compare yourself to those people you went to high school/college with, people with poo poo jobs and poo poo majors and are dumb as poo poo will have all of these things before you, while you seem like you're just spinning your wheels and engaging in some misguided wanderlust. Are you ok with this? No, don't just say yes. Think about it. Really, really think about it. If you're not willing to give everything up for this, you're not only wasting your time, but, more importantly, you're wasting mine and everybody around you's time. That isn't fair.

As for getting in - there's a million ways. Getting in isn't the problem, it's staying in. That's tricky. Anybody can grab a paycheck or two when a shoot come to town, but surviving, that's tough. You can get in as an intern on set, working for free in the department of your choosing. You can get an office job at a studio or production company. You can join the teamsters. You can be rich and finance a film - I mean "invest". You can just start writing scripts and get them to agents. You can start acting in student projects and build up a reel to shot to casting directors. You can rescore your favorite movies and use them as example... Without knowing what you want to do I can't really help you out.

As for getting a project off the ground - it depends on the level of production that you want to do. A run and gun thing can be done with you and your friends on a saturday afternoon. Other things you're going to need to bring on other gung-ho people who think that you have something to offer to the "filmic conversation" and want their own portfolios padded. You come together, get some money together and a couple weekends and hey, maybe you'll have something.

I met most of my people through a number of ways - 1.) Film School - going through it, you know who's good and who isn't. Who is in it for the long haul and who wants to be famous for doing nothing. You find the good people, you be good yourself, and maybe things will work out. Not always, though. It kills me to see some of the best from my school absolutely stuck in life and in their careers, just going nowhere. They could have been great, but life gets in the way. If you want to make it, you have to be better than that.

2.) Film Festivals - I've spent a long, long, long time on the festival circuit. And it's amazing how I've changed over the years. I remember doing my first major one, I was walking down the street and I bumped into a friend of mine, he asked where I was going - I told him that there was a movie that was going to start in a half hour that I was curious about. He grabbed my arm and simply said, "The party is this way". He then taught me everything I know about networking. Thank God he did that. Festivals are where I've met my heroes (Ranging from Danny Boyle to Jim Jarmusch to RZA), where I met my current employer, where I met interesting filmmakers that I always look to see what they're doing, to where I've met the people producing my current project, where I've made friends-for-life, where I've done stories I just can't repeat here, where I've drank my body weight in Stella over the course of a night, where I've gotten into a physical fight, to so many things. It's been quite a ride and I'm still perfecting it. But how have things changed? My first year at SXSW I was there for the entire thing and saw 27 movies. This past year I was there for 8 days and saw 7. At a film festival you meet people who are active in doing things (usually) and eager to make some movies. It's where new and interesting films and ideas enter our marketplace, it's a place where people are looking for young (or new) talent with fresh takes on things. Be that person. Be creative, have good ideas, but be willing to fetch coffee, air up tires, clean up the parking lot, whatever else you can do to help out. The more positive you are, the more people will want to work with you.

3.) Movie screenings - movie people like to go see movies. And they like to go see them first and exclusively and in a clique. In Austin, the Alamo Drafthouse attracts the moviemaker set like nothing else. Same with the Cinefamily, New Bev, DGA, etc. in LA. Where's the cool place to see movies in your hometown? Go there. Hang out after the screenings, talk to strangers - you've both just seen a movie - you have something to talk about! Be upfront with what you want to do - you'll find somebody who's got something going on, and if you're willing to talk about what really gets you amped off the anthem for some sequence in some obscure Korean film, somebody's going to think you're valuable to have aboard.


Rogetz posted:

Tacking on to this, how do I set myself apart as a camera man when everyone and their mother owns a video camera and is competing for the same low-level jobs? I can't afford my own equipment beyond the basic stuff that I have, especially now that everyone's expecting you to be a one-man band. I've got feature credit but not on anything that anyone's heard of or going to hear of, how can I leverage that when I still don't know anyone?

Camera department may be the most difficult place to break in. Not because so many people shoot on their HD Flips or whatever - it's because there's so few people that are actually good at it. If you're good you'll get work. I have a friend who flies all over the globe to shoot in places that I've never even heard of and makes insane money doing it. How did he get there? He shot his rear end off, he gripped on everything, he gaffed, etc. Work on everything camera dept./lighting you can. Be good at it. Also as a shooter, learn to light. A DP isn't the guy who operates the camera and exposes, it's the guy who figures out how we're going to light it, how we're going to make it look good, how it's going to fit the story/mood, etc. A lot of people want to be DPs until they learn that. Some DPs never touch the camera.

So, get $50 worth of lights from home depot and learn how they work. How do they affect color? For me, I never understood how lighting worked until it just clicked and I "got it". Some people in the industry (Jason Reitman, for example) still don't understand it - but they employ people who do. How do you make a scene more contrasty? How do you make it dark while still being able to see and read the action? How do you make an actress look better than she does in person? Work on things like that. Put together a reel.

Mozzie
Oct 26, 2007


Rogetz posted:

Tacking on to this, how do I set myself apart as a camera man when everyone and their mother owns a video camera and is competing for the same low-level jobs? I can't afford my own equipment beyond the basic stuff that I have, especially now that everyone's expecting you to be a one-man band. I've got feature credit but not on anything that anyone's heard of or going to hear of, how can I leverage that when I still don't know anyone?

As told to me by the coorindator of one of the major camera rental departments in toronto nearly 3 years ago (just when red was becoming a player)

"Kill yourself, you'll save yourself a lot of trouble"

Welcome to the brave new world where digital has begun to destroy the camera person profession.

Edit: thankfully years later we all can laugh about how all those red owners are now struggling to peddle their piece of poo poo camera packages and with the deliverance of Alexa, the camera rental industry is recovering from all the undercutting.

Mozzie fucked around with this message at Nov 23, 2010 around 02:36

AccountSupervisor
Aug 3, 2004

I am greatful for my loop pedal

Mozzie posted:

As told to me by the coorindator of one of the major camera rental departments in toronto nearly 3 years ago (just when red was becoming a player)

"Kill yourself, you'll save yourself a lot of trouble"

Welcome to the brave new world where digital has begun to destroy the camera person profession.

Edit: thankfully years later we all can laugh about how all those red owners are now struggling to peddle their piece of poo poo camera packages and with the deliverance of Alexa, the camera rental industry is recovering from all the undercutting.

Do you think the Scarlet or Epic are going to make you stop laughing?

mojo1701a
Oct 8, 2008

Saving the world...
at $11 an hour.



NeuroticErotica posted:

Lemme put it to you this way - if you own a ball club and you have the opportunity to hire a pitcher who has a curveball or one that has a curveball AND a slider, you're more likely to hire the guy who has more tools. I like Avid editors a lot and miss working with it - an editor who's trained on an Avid is much more precise and thoughtful - Avid doesn't let you just throw 100 clips into the timeline, poke 'em around and hope that you get a movie out of it. With Avid every edit is a decision. There's a reason why this shot leads to that shot at that time. There's not "Well this just happened this way", which is absolute bullshit and if you edit that way, can you please just stop?

Also, while being fast is nice, your circumstances were not theres. Every project is different.


There's no "official" scale, but take a look at these things - are they that impressive? (This isn't me being condescending, this is me giving you the thought process) Is this something that people would say - hey, I gotta hire this guy? Also, real quick, why are you pointing out that you lit that project? Unless you're working at some small place that's going to have you be their bitch and do everything, editors don't need to light. So if that's your reason for putting it in (I didn't watch it, so it could be dope I don't know) then you need to reconsider. As for "nothing you don't own" - no DP has cleared the indie-rock song that they use on their reels, so I wouldn't worry about it. Worry about the quality of the work.

And there's always something to edit. It may not be a stellar project, and it may not pay, but there's always somebody who needs something cut.

Thanks for the honest replies. I'm working on learning Avid (like I said, haven't actually had the chance to edit something concrete), so I've been learning the proper habits on how to edit with it. I've seen a lot of what you mentioned, how people just throw everything on a timeline and see what sticks without considering how it works. I actually had the director's blessing to re-cut one of the movies I did the way I thought it should go from the beginning (since it got meddled with), so I may try editing it on Avid.

And yeah, they're not impressive videos other than in a "Hey, I love Community, and seeing it made into a BSG-like is, like, so cool!"-type way. I think they're awesome, but only 'cause I'm a huge nerd, and I'm pretty sure they're not the type of thing that I would depend on (mostly 'cause the editing is aping the original, and I'm just inserting appropriate shots). I only thought I'd mention it is because there are a lot of these types of videos on Youtube, but honestly, most of them suck (a random one I found).

Also, as for why I mentioned that I lit it? I honestly have no idea, other than maybe for stroking my own ego.

Steadiman
Jan 31, 2006

Hey...what kind of party is this? there's no booze and only one hooker!

silly sevens

Rogetz posted:

Tacking on to this, how do I set myself apart as a camera man when everyone and their mother owns a video camera and is competing for the same low-level jobs? I can't afford my own equipment beyond the basic stuff that I have, especially now that everyone's expecting you to be a one-man band. I've got feature credit but not on anything that anyone's heard of or going to hear of, how can I leverage that when I still don't know anyone?
The most important thing is not to worry about equipment. Gear is just a tool and means nothing to your skill as a cameraman. It just means you spent a lot of money on something that will be obsolete soon and you know how to read a manual, it says nothing at all about how talented you are. Being a good cameraman is all about your mind and your eyes. Way too many aspiring cameramen get bogged down in fancy technology and expensive gadgets, these are all unimportant. A good cameraman can make almost any camera look good because he works on what fills the frame, not on what captures the frame. So that's how you set yourself apart from all the gear heads, work on developing an amazing eye for composition, learn about motivated movement, study up on lighting. All that good stuff.

You need to be able to tell a story within any frame, this is not easy and takes experience. What works, what doesn't work, all these things will start making sense to you the more you play with it. There's thousands of ways to frame any given setup, choosing the best one is the talent of a good cameraman. Every shot you make should be in service of the story you're trying to tell, even random b-roll needs to be considered and set with care. Never just throw a camera down and say it's good, even if the director just wants "a quick closeup". look at everything in the frame. Think of what else you shot for the scene and how it will cut with what you're doing now. Inch the camera around to find the ideal background, keep both eyes open so you can find alternatives.

If you start moving the camera, consider the move carefully. Can you motivate it or are you just moving for the sake of moving? Does it add the the story or distract from it. Sometimes no move is better, no matter how tempting it may be. Learn about all your options for movement as well. Do you want a dolly or crane or Steadicam, they all move but they all move differently. Once you've decided on the tool, learn to utilize it properly. A crane doesn't just have to move up and down, for instance. It also does wonderful tracking on any level, which very few people use strangely enough. A Steadicam is often not the best choice for static parts in your shot so maybe a dolly would be better. Etc. Learn everything about the tools available to you and then you'll be able to apply them effectively.

Finally, a good cameraman is a great politician. You have to be assertive, social, calm, and fast. You're going to be dealing with a lot of talking and you're going to have to learn how to fight for the shots you want. You'll have to be able to calmly deal with spoiled actors who don't like your light or frame, you'll have to deal with directors who want stupid, or impossible, things. You're going to deal with producers who don't want to pay for what you need to get the shot. If you can make all that work in a calm and professional manner, people will want to work with you. Hell, they'll demand to work with you!

So, as I said, a good cameraman is all about your mind and your eyes. Train these, practise a lot, and you'll set yourself apart quite well. Make a nice demo reel to show off these skills and people will eventually want to work with you.

WebDog
Jun 14, 2006


In need of tissue posted:

What is the best way to get into the film industry? Work on sets and try and work your way up? How do you get in touch with the people to work on their set? Or get your own films moving and submit them to festivals etc.?

It's pretty much impossible to just "work on sets", at the most you will end up as a gofer and even then the most you could end up working as is a 3rd AD herding extras.

Education plays a big part, rocking up to an interview and gushing how much you love the industry and are willing to do anything will get you laughed at, you really need to find your niche and stick with it.
Therefore a film school is critical in knowing how to talk the talk (so to speak).
It's also a good chance of beginning a film as many people I work with today I've met during my training and we often orbit around assisting on small projects.

If you do manage to get something together, check out http://www.withoutabox.com/ for finding ways to submit your film into festivals.
Or if you're starting small there's often quite a few short film competitions floating around with limits like "Make a short two minute film about how climate change affects today's society" that usually provide an interesting challenge.

quote:

Tacking on to this, how do I set myself apart as a camera man when everyone and their mother owns a video camera and is competing for the same low-level jobs? I can't afford my own equipment beyond the basic stuff that I have, especially now that everyone's expecting you to be a one-man band. I've got feature credit but not on anything that anyone's heard of or going to hear of, how can I leverage that when I still don't know anyone?

What Stediman said below.
It's really a matter of knowing everything inside and out, but importantly understanding the limitations of things.

Read through stuff like American Cinematographer, watch stuff like Visions of Light and Cinematographer's style, and read stuff from Eisenstein's theory of montage to The Five C's of Cinematography and of course try this stuff out.
Even if you shoot a wedding video you'll stand out if you think about making the whole event a story (which it is).
Don't shoot the whole drat thing in wide, go in for the misty-eyed parents, grab some shots of the candles to cross fade in during the vows and of course understanding colour temps, exposure and so forth turns a crummy home video into something really special.

Currently a trend is to shoot on DSLR cameras that film 1080p, the main advantage is a cheap camera that allows for interchangeable lens.**
It allows indie makers to get a pretty polished look, however DSLR's come with their own limitations, such as the fact they're a stills camera with an additional feature of shooting HD video, in the end it just isn't as efficient as you can't record for long periods of time.

There's also the effect of common lens creating an incredibly shallow depth of field that is sort of becoming the "lens flare" effect for beginning cinematographers who are used to deep focus lenses on cheap cameras.
Focus can be fiddly and you often have to shell out for a focus ring to keep things under control lest you suffer with shots that are a mite out of focus.

My method is to rent cameras, sure it might make for a scary quote but it's better than spending ten grand on a camera that will be taking up shelf space in a year or so.
And going down the DSLR route, it's so drat tempting to get stacks of little gizmos so in the end your camera looks like this.


** Great Yaitanes talks about filming the finale of House on a Canon 5D MKII
http://philipbloom.net/other-stuff/...-transcription/

In need of tissue
Mar 26, 2007
The sleeve is no replacement

NeuroticErotica posted:


This is so vague I can't even begin to answer it. First thing's first - What do you want to do? Now, DO YOU REALLY, REALLY WANT TO DO IT? Are you willing to be poor? Are you willing to be unable to see a doctor? Are you willing to sacrifice personal relationships for it? Are you willing to let it consume you completely? No, don't just loving blindly say yes to the questions without thinking - Look them over very carefully and think about them for a while. What do you want out of life? Do you want to get married? Do you want children? Do you want to own a house? There are few people who can pull these things off while in this business - more importantly if you compare yourself to those people you went to high school/college with, people with poo poo jobs and poo poo majors and are dumb as poo poo will have all of these things before you, while you seem like you're just spinning your wheels and engaging in some misguided wanderlust. Are you ok with this? No, don't just say yes. Think about it. Really, really think about it. If you're not willing to give everything up for this, you're not only wasting your time, but, more importantly, you're wasting mine and everybody around you's time. That isn't fair.

As for getting in - there's a million ways. Getting in isn't the problem, it's staying in. That's tricky. Anybody can grab a paycheck or two when a shoot come to town, but surviving, that's tough. You can get in as an intern on set, working for free in the department of your choosing. You can get an office job at a studio or production company. You can join the teamsters. You can be rich and finance a film - I mean "invest". You can just start writing scripts and get them to agents. You can start acting in student projects and build up a reel to shot to casting directors. You can rescore your favorite movies and use them as example... Without knowing what you want to do I can't really help you out.

As for getting a project off the ground - it depends on the level of production that you want to do. A run and gun thing can be done with you and your friends on a saturday afternoon. Other things you're going to need to bring on other gung-ho people who think that you have something to offer to the "filmic conversation" and want their own portfolios padded. You come together, get some money together and a couple weekends and hey, maybe you'll have something.

I met most of my people through a number of ways - 1.) Film School - going through it, you know who's good and who isn't. Who is in it for the long haul and who wants to be famous for doing nothing. You find the good people, you be good yourself, and maybe things will work out. Not always, though. It kills me to see some of the best from my school absolutely stuck in life and in their careers, just going nowhere. They could have been great, but life gets in the way. If you want to make it, you have to be better than that.

2.) Film Festivals - I've spent a long, long, long time on the festival circuit. And it's amazing how I've changed over the years. I remember doing my first major one, I was walking down the street and I bumped into a friend of mine, he asked where I was going - I told him that there was a movie that was going to start in a half hour that I was curious about. He grabbed my arm and simply said, "The party is this way". He then taught me everything I know about networking. Thank God he did that. Festivals are where I've met my heroes (Ranging from Danny Boyle to Jim Jarmusch to RZA), where I met my current employer, where I met interesting filmmakers that I always look to see what they're doing, to where I've met the people producing my current project, where I've made friends-for-life, where I've done stories I just can't repeat here, where I've drank my body weight in Stella over the course of a night, where I've gotten into a physical fight, to so many things. It's been quite a ride and I'm still perfecting it. But how have things changed? My first year at SXSW I was there for the entire thing and saw 27 movies. This past year I was there for 8 days and saw 7. At a film festival you meet people who are active in doing things (usually) and eager to make some movies. It's where new and interesting films and ideas enter our marketplace, it's a place where people are looking for young (or new) talent with fresh takes on things. Be that person. Be creative, have good ideas, but be willing to fetch coffee, air up tires, clean up the parking lot, whatever else you can do to help out. The more positive you are, the more people will want to work with you.

3.) Movie screenings - movie people like to go see movies. And they like to go see them first and exclusively and in a clique. In Austin, the Alamo Drafthouse attracts the moviemaker set like nothing else. Same with the Cinefamily, New Bev, DGA, etc. in LA. Where's the cool place to see movies in your hometown? Go there. Hang out after the screenings, talk to strangers - you've both just seen a movie - you have something to talk about! Be upfront with what you want to do - you'll find somebody who's got something going on, and if you're willing to talk about what really gets you amped off the anthem for some sequence in some obscure Korean film, somebody's going to think you're valuable to have aboard.

Thanks for such a great reply! I guess I missed quite a few details while writing the first time: I did go to a film certificate program out of high school which may have been better if it was longer(it was only ~9months, everyday, 8 hours).

After the film program I got an internship with a production company that gets hired to film whatever is needed(they got a year of my free work: it gave me great experience and some nice stuff to add to the resume and now I can say that I don't want to go into working different jobs everyday).

It seems like festivals are a great place to network. The past two years I have done the 48hour festival. I am in the process of writing a short film that I to make and intend to submit to festivals. I am very interested in directing(along with everyone else) but I am also interested in the camera aspect too.

I am from the Boston area and was pumped about the whole 'East Hollywood', but it seems they have slowed production on that. I was planning on applying for work there, as a grip, gaffer, or intern.
Again, thanks for the response. If you could go back in time, would you do it again?

Mozzie
Oct 26, 2007


AccountSupervisor posted:

Do you think the Scarlet or Epic are going to make you stop laughing?

Sure, I look forward to the tooth fairy doing a camera test with them.

Rogetz
Jan 11, 2003
Alcohol and Nicotine every morning

This is all great information. Guess I'll have to start cranking out shorts. Thanks again for this thread and everyone contributing.

Captain Geech
Mar 14, 2008

I've made a huge mistake.


This has been a helpful and entertaining thread thus far, N.E., so thanks for that.

I have a question for you. I enjoy screenwriting quite a bit, and I want to give it a go once I finish grad school in Vancouver. I realize that I will probably have to move to LA to have a real shot at this. My problem is that I'm not sure what to do from there. You've mentioned some things previously, but I wonder if you could go into a little more detail about who exactly a screenwriter (particularly an unestablished one) tries to give/sell his script to, and how that process works.

ynotony
Apr 13, 2003

Yea...this is pretty much the smartest thing I have ever done.

Captain Geech posted:

This has been a helpful and entertaining thread thus far, N.E., so thanks for that.

I have a question for you. I enjoy screenwriting quite a bit, and I want to give it a go once I finish grad school in Vancouver. I realize that I will probably have to move to LA to have a real shot at this. My problem is that I'm not sure what to do from there. You've mentioned some things previously, but I wonder if you could go into a little more detail about who exactly a screenwriter (particularly an unestablished one) tries to give/sell his script to, and how that process works.

Meet agents, producers, other writers, filmmakers, assistants... go from there. Learn to recognize opportunity. That might sound hopelessly generic, but that is what it takes. Getting an agent will help put your scripts in front of people and set up auditions for projects. But so will just being friends with an agent, producer, development executive, etc. Or maybe just their assistants.

Build a network. All it really takes is to meet one person with an existing network and explore it yourself. For example, I recently made a new friend in the music industry. After hanging out with him the last couple months I've met a bunch of pretty incredible people. And that is by accident, I'm not interested in music at all.

NeuroticErotica
Sep 9, 2003

Perform sex? Uh uh, I don't think I'm up to a performance, but I'll rehearse with you...



Mozzie posted:

Edit: thankfully years later we all can laugh about how all those red owners are now struggling to peddle their piece of poo poo camera packages and with the deliverance of Alexa, the camera rental industry is recovering from all the undercutting.

AccountSupervisor posted:

Do you think the Scarlet or Epic are going to make you stop laughing?

I hate camera lust. It's cart before the horse and people who get into it fight and fight and fight over nothing.

That said...

WebDog posted:

Currently a trend is to shoot on DSLR cameras that film 1080p, the main advantage is a cheap camera that allows for interchangeable lens.**
It allows indie makers to get a pretty polished look, however DSLR's come with their own limitations, such as the fact they're a stills camera with an additional feature of shooting HD video, in the end it just isn't as efficient as you can't record for long periods of time.

There's also the effect of common lens creating an incredibly shallow depth of field that is sort of becoming the "lens flare" effect for beginning cinematographers who are used to deep focus lenses on cheap cameras.
Focus can be fiddly and you often have to shell out for a focus ring to keep things under control lest you suffer with shots that are a mite out of focus.

This is the worst trend. I'm not a fan of shooting on DSLRs, even though the stuff that I used them on came out ok. You really can't move the things without them freaking out, the moire everything, and having what looks to be Dad's old Minolta - no matter how many attachments you have to it - makes it look like it's not a real production - which is the worst aspect of them.

I wonder how many people would be so gung-ho if it was a 3rd party hack that made these things shoot this way instead of it being the companies themselves hacking them and reverse engineering them for the job, instead of building it from the camera up.

Screening post these things is the worst, I've seen so many serious features and shorts that end up looking like Based God videos.


In need of tissue posted:

It seems like festivals are a great place to network. The past two years I have done the 48hour festival. I am in the process of writing a short film that I to make and intend to submit to festivals. I am very interested in directing(along with everyone else) but I am also interested in the camera aspect too.

I am from the Boston area and was pumped about the whole 'East Hollywood', but it seems they have slowed production on that. I was planning on applying for work there, as a grip, gaffer, or intern.
Again, thanks for the response. If you could go back in time, would you do it again?

Yeah, just pick your festivals carefully - the 48hour festival isn't really a festival, it's a contest. It's good for people learning how the form works and whatnot, but it's less than likely you'll meet people above your general skill level.

As for East Hollywood - hot spots. They'll change.

As for going back in time... would I write my response again? I guess. Didn't take that long. Live this whole life? It's been working out for me so far, but I can't tell you how many people I've seen crash and burn out of it and are now waiters far away from here. It's gotten ugly at times. But I've survived. Things look, well, as ok as they ever get. I've got some projects moving forward, we'll see... It's worked for me. But this is all I can do. I can't change your oil, you'd hate for me to bring you eggs in the morning, and programming a computer is out of the question. This is me, and there's nothing that I can do about it.

Rogetz posted:

This is all great information. Guess I'll have to start cranking out shorts. Thanks again for this thread and everyone contributing.

Think 'em through, don't make 'em boring, and make them short. When you get to a place to where you think you couldn't possibly cut anything out of it you should probably cut 2-6 minutes out of it.

Captain Geech posted:

This has been a helpful and entertaining thread thus far, N.E., so thanks for that.

I have a question for you. I enjoy screenwriting quite a bit, and I want to give it a go once I finish grad school in Vancouver. I realize that I will probably have to move to LA to have a real shot at this. My problem is that I'm not sure what to do from there. You've mentioned some things previously, but I wonder if you could go into a little more detail about who exactly a screenwriter (particularly an unestablished one) tries to give/sell his script to, and how that process works.

Glad to... help? Am I helping? Good lord.

The thread that I've been trying to establish with this whole thing, and maybe I'm not coming through on this, is that there is no linear, algebraic way into this whole game. I can't tell you to go to X place at Y time and meet Z person who will declare you a genius and the new Robert Towne and roll out the red carpet to walk you down to where you sign your 3-picture multimillion dollar deal. You can do everything right and still fail at this.

That said 1.) Have a loving script or five when you get out here. I can't tell you how many "writers" have no scripts to their name, not a short. They're hoping to get commissioned to a project. Based on what, who knows. 2.) The scripts need to be amazing. Amazing. GOOD IS NOT GOOD ENOUGH lemme say that again, GOOD IS NOT GOOD ENOUGH - even if your project is ultra-low budget, you basically have to ask people to put years of their lives, time away from their loved ones, effort, energy and millions of dollars into your project. Is your script something worthy of that? And don't give me the ol' "well, Hollywood makes dozens of lousy pictures a year, so my script doesn't have to be much better" bullshit that bad and (worse) lazy writers spew. Their circumstances are not your circumstances. 3.) Give us a script that has some commercial potential. Now, I know this is me Mr. Gush-over-every-inaccessable-Sundance-film-ever-made, but I'm serious. Right now the films I love are getting slaughtered and aren't getting made anymore. It really sucks. Go for something that can get made. You can still put the themes and storylines you want, but just make it so that it has a somewhat ok chance of making it's money back. 4.) Don't make us pay for your therapy. I can't tell you how many scripts about Daddy issues that I see. They're all whiny and don't really go anywhere. I'm supposed to relate but, I'm cool with my Dad and the character is an unlikable version of the writer and it's all gunk. Not to poo poo over your artistic vision or anything, but there's ways of making art that people will still go to see at a multiplex on a date. I swear.

So, life is hard for an unrepresented writer - why? Because so many of the scripts you see from people who do have representation are so awful that you simply must be worse. Try to get one. Yes, it's very difficult. Nothing is going to be easy in this process.

In the mean time, there's a lot of organizations for writers - Quiet spaces for them (that you pay for), meetings, writer meet-ups, you're going to meet a lot of people who are enamored with the process of writing but don't actually do it. It's weird. A lot of writers are in love with the idea of being writers, but never take the baby steps off the ledge into actually acting upon it. Actually that describes a lot of people in a lot of fields out here. You're going to have to separate who you like to hang out with versus who is actually good at what they do and so on and so on.

And of course, you want to meet people OTHER than writers so that you can get other places. Go to the film events, go to the meet ups and such. A whole loving lot of them are really loving lame and everybody there is a loser who will never do anything ever. Your time is going to be wasted a lot of times. But, you're learning what's good, what's working, what's not, where to go, where not, and getting an idea of the lay of the land and where you should be headed... hopefully. Meet people in all walks of life, be cool, keep in touch and maybe it'll work out.

In the meantime, don't be that rear end in a top hat who doesn't enjoy themselves. LA is a fun town. Go out, party, meet girls, make bad decisions, drink until you black out and see who friends you on facebook in the morning, do drugs, be bad, miss home, throw up somewhere unusual, be secretive, find your way into the extremely sketchy afterhours downtown, freak out, have a blast, go somewhere that requires a password. That's what this town is for.

Fonzarelli
Aug 15, 2004

Jumping the Shark

Hahah oh man, as somebody who's doing a digital multimedia degree right now, absolutely hoping to get into the entertainment industry, this thread is terrifying and disheartening.

NeuroticErotica
Sep 9, 2003

Perform sex? Uh uh, I don't think I'm up to a performance, but I'll rehearse with you...



Fonzarelli posted:

Hahah oh man, as somebody who's doing a digital multimedia degree right now, absolutely hoping to get into the entertainment industry, this thread is terrifying and disheartening.

Welcome to my world.

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Steadiman
Jan 31, 2006

Hey...what kind of party is this? there's no booze and only one hooker!

silly sevens

Mozzie posted:

Sure, I look forward to the tooth fairy doing a camera test with them.
I've just tested the Epic for a 3d production, they are out there and shooting. If the iPad would let me upload images, I'd show you. Does that mean I'm the tooth fairy? Cause that's gonna cost me a lot of quarters and I'm not that rich! I don't wanna be a fairy

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