Five Film Directing Skills that make a difference

March 2, 2012 by · Comments Off on Five Film Directing Skills that make a difference 

Directing a Shot on the Set of Dealing with Destiny

Post:  Five ways to make your film shoot work effectively 

Most people on our Film Courses love the Film Shoot.  The Film Course Participant learn more on the Film Shoot than any other part of our four month Film School. The main reason for this is  team work.   A group of people bond and make a creative endeavor.  There are many laughs, intense moments and character tests. The satisfaction of creating a film, that will be seen by millions of eyes in the future, also adds a sense of purpose and excitement to the shoot. However the amateur film maker can make a mess out of a Film Shoot and end up having a very challenging time. How can a Film Director make the most of a Film Shoot?  Prepare Prepare Prepare.  How does the film director make a Film Shoot fun and memorable. Here are five areas that one can focus on.
  1. The Script
  2. Actor Rehearsal
  3. Plan the Blocking in Advance
  4. Shot list and/or Storyboard
  5. Pushing the Standard High.
1 Know your Script: 
This is so important. Know your script intimately.  It is called Script Analysis. What this means is that you break the script down and work out exactly what the characters in the scene are doing. Generally speaking the characters will have objectives and they will have different ways of playing the actions in the scene. A Director needs to work out the game plan in advance of a Film Shoot. The Director needs to know how he wants his actors to play the scene in advance of the shoot.  When this happens,  the director can communicate succintly and deliberately on set. Know your script.
2 Actor Rehearsal: 
It really pays to have an actor rehearsal prior to the Film Shoot. What this means is that the actors and the director can discuss the script and the scenes. When one is on a film set, there is too much happening. The Director usually is peppered with questions and other on set problems. Therefore there is no time to rehearse in detail. Have an actor rehearsal prior to a shoot.  You can  weed out cluncky dialogue through improvisation. You sometimes will find a better way of playing the scene. If the director is lucky enough to rehearse on the actual set prior to the shoot,  this will save time. The director can lock down the Actor Blocking in advance of the shoot.
3 Plan the Blocking in Advance. 
Blocking refers to the movement of the actors on the set. The Director needs to know exactly where he wants his actors to move on the set. If left to the actors to move on their own, the movement can be very limited and will probally not fit in with the shot list. So one of the key Directorial tasks, is to work out the actors blocking. This takes training and that is why you should look at a really good Film Course to learn these key film director skills
4 Shot List Storyboard
A Director needs to work out  their Shot list in advance of the shoot. This is one of the areas that definitely reqrires training. Working our the coverage of a scene,  is so important.  A great shot list will create the building blocks for the edit.  Learn all about this on one of our practical Film Courses
5 Pushing the Standard High. 
Working on a film requires commitment . However the very best directors always push for the very best. They motivate and cajole their actors and their crew to push for the very best. If the actors and the crew feel that the director is pushing for a great film, they will try 10o times harder.
One needs to learn how to make films professionally and that is why it is very important to get the very best training available on the very best film course .  Remember learn from the best and when you are shooting prepare prepare prepare. Film Schools in the very near future 2012  
Till next time   Have a great one.     Colm O'Murchu     Director International Film Base
Why did I get this film making email?  You signed up for our Free E Course on how film directors made it big and and therefore receive our blog on a bimonthly basis. 

The Film Editor – The Star Crew Member

March 2, 2012 by · Comments Off on The Film Editor – The Star Crew Member 

POST: The Film Editor is the true star of any Film Production

Today, I want to focus on The Film Editor.

Learning all about the Tools of the Trade

This morning I read all about the Oscars.  Kirk Baxter, an Australian, has just won back to back Oscars. Kirk won last night for the film " The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. *  Yet it hardly makes the papers.  For many people, film  editors are these nerdy characters who spend way too much time in small rooms. Yet in reality they are the true stars of any Film Production. Tropfest was one of the big film events in February.  Tropfest is the worlds largest film festival which takes place at the Domain in Sydney. On the Saturday I attended Tropfest Roughcut with about 150 other film makers.     Speaking at the event were non other than Geoffrey Rush, Actor (The King’s Speech, Pirates of the Caribbean) Kieran Darcy-Smith, Director (Wish You Were Here), Actor (Animal Kingdom) Jason Ballantine, Editor (The Great Gatsby, Wolf Creek, Wish You Were Here) Jason Ballantine is certainly one of the most talented Film Editors with a raft of great film credits all ready attached to his name. Yet he is very humble.  Yet, he is one of the most important  creative people working on Great Gatsby starring Leonardo DiCaprio I always find it amazing that Film Editors never get the credit that they are due. I am going to be controversial and say this the Film Editor is the single most important crew member after the Film Director. Many outsiders do not realize the following fact.   The Film Director will spend most of his or her life in post production. The Shoot might be only 6 - 10 weeks while post production will often consume about 9 months after the film is finished. Peter Jackson spent just over  a year shooting the Lord of the Rings trilogy and then spent three years in Post Production. It is the attention to detail in Post Production that pays off. If time is spent on post production, this will dramatically make the difference between a  really good film and an average film. Let me clarify Post Production. Post Production includes the Picture Edit (today's subject) Colouring and Grading Visual Effects Titles Music Sound Postproduction Conforming formats such as DCP. The Film Director is involved with all of the above.

Booming and getting the very best location sound

On the film set, the film director only gathers the building blocks of  the film and of course it is very important to get the very best building blocks. However the edit and full post production is where the film is made. There is a gulf of difference between a really good edit and an average edit. In the former,  the film is dynamic and engaging. In the latter the film stinks and is considered a Turkey. However the edit is one area that is neglected in the short film arena. Many emerging film makers believe that the film is complete, once the shoot is over. The mindset is this .....  "Oh yes there is still a bit of editing and music to do but the film is now shot and it will only be a short time till the film is complete." The emerging film maker  then confronts reality. Post Production can suddenly feel like a never ending process. Picture Editing  is an art form that  only came into existence when  motion picture was invented back in the late 19th Century.  Before 1896, there were many fine actors who acted in theater  and there were many stories been told in different mediums. Photography had been around for a long time. Music had been around since the dawn of man. Motion Picture editing only started once we could shoot motion picture.  Therefore it is the purest season of film making. It exists totally out of the need to cut motion picture and create the illusion of a story. Editing up to the early 1990s was a cumbersome process. I remember my first films back in the late 80s. We used to edit on Steenbacks. We would literally chop the film with a small guillotine and splice it back together with splicing tape. Any visual effects would be chalked on the film print and sent off to an Optical House where the effects would be created. How times have changed for the better.  We now edit in the computer and anyone can do it from anywhere. I often edit on the airplane when I am on long flights. You will only know the difference great editing makes once  you start to make your own films. One of the areas we focus on in our film courses is Post Production. A large part of the course is dedicated to post production with 5 sessions spent finishing the film. Many emerging film makers find the shoot so exciting and fun. The adrenalin is running and once the film is shot, they then are

Course Production Filming on Set

confronted with post production which is insular and slow.  Suddenly there is only two people.  The Director and the Editor sitting in front of a computer actually making a film. Not so exciting for many people. To me personally, editing is one of the best parts of film making.  When one sits down to create magic and a memorable engaging story, the hours fly by.  I believe that if you want to be a Film Director it is important to love this season of film making. You have a choice as a Film Director.
  1. Learn editing and become an expert at editing and cutting your own short films and anyone else you can volunteer for. I  personally think that if you can learn to edit, it will pay off in the  long run.
  2. Find an experienced or up and coming editor and work closely with them on your films
How do you do this?  The first step is to enroll on a really good film course   Till next time , have a great one. Colm O’Murchu      Director * If you have not seen the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, please see it. It is a wonderful film that engages you from the beginning to the end. David Fincher  is at his best in this very engaging thriller set in Sweden

5 Reasons why I love the AFM in LA every year

December 1, 2011 by · Comments Off on 5 Reasons why I love the AFM in LA every year 

 I attended the AFM for the third time in November. I always find the AFM an inspiring event. The AFM stands for the American Film Market. It is where films are bought and sold by Sales Agents and Distributors from around the world. For example, Ron Howard visited selling his Formulae One film, RUSH.  The film business epicenter is Los Angeles and Hollywood and right in the heart of it is the AFM.  The AFM is one of the key events every year. Why do I enjoy the AFM so  much and why do I go year after year? Here are five reasons that I love going every year. 1 Relationships. Film making and financing requires key relationships to make films happen. The AFM has many people pitching their projects to Sales Agents and Distributors. This year, we made progress. We have now attracted a company in the US who will finance the Script Development and packaging of our $5 million dollar film "The Lima Connection."  set in Lima Peru and Mimi Florida With a film like this, we have to take an international approach attending the AFM 2 Seminars: Every morning there are very useful seminars on financing distribution and marketing films. Film Sales is in such a state of flux. With the internet changing the landscape of how films are presented and sold, the market is in a state of shift. At these seminars, one is educated in exactly what is happening. 3  Networking Drinks at the Lowes Hotel Every afternoon about 3PM,  the networking drinks start at Lowes Hotel. This is where everyone meets and greets each other. There is a mixture of Sales Agents, Actors, Film Makers and Distributors. You never know who you are going to meet. The Goal is always to find mutually beneficial relationships. One of the ironies of the networking drinks is that nobody drinks much. Most people do not drink at all. Yes drinks are expensive but the main reason, none of us drink is that we want to stay sharp. Nothing looks worst than a tipsy person trying to network. For me, these networking drinks led to meeting some key people who I will form alliances with in the future. 4  Parties After  the networking drinks, the major players and stars often throw parties. Getting invited is the trick. But every night there is a different party. Once again, this all works back to reason number one. Relationships. It is who you know that helps you finance your films. The more key relationships you build , the better. I attended a fun party in the Hollywood Hills where there were many people you see in papers all the time. I also attended another very good film industry party in Venice beach. Even with Door Security, this party was packed. Still great fun . Once again, this is where you meet people who in the future , may end up as a key alliance in the financing of a future film. Once again stay sober and sharp, if you want to get the maximum benefit from the parties. Also you want to be in great shape for the Seminar next morning at 9am.  Another cool party was where Jeff Goldblum (Jurassic Park, The Fly) was playing in his band. 5 Deals and Meetings Meetings happen at all the cafes and restaurants all over Santa Monica. I had one of my main meetings at my favourite Hollywood Hotel called the Roosevelt Hotel. Yes in the end it is all about signing contracts and financing future projects. I very much enjoyed signing our contract for The Lima Connection at the Polo Bar in Beverly Hills Hotel. Jennifer Anniston was sitting at the power table near-by which added a very Hollywood feel.  This is what it is all about. Relationships that lead to your next project getting made and distributed widely worldwide. Summary: Yes it was a great 10 Days in the epicenter of the film business. I find the time there is inspiring and up-lifting. Should you go? Once you are developing feature film projects, I think you will find the international relationships you develop will be of great benefit to you. With two feature film projects in development, the American Film Market is a week where I make major progress and also check closely on how my past films are selling. In the end it is still all about making films. Since I have being back in Sydney Australia, I have been working with a very cool film called "Repressed "as a DOP. I am also gearing up to shoot my next feature film in May 2012. If you would like to learn how to make your own films, the first step is to attend a great film course. it is part of my inspiration to teach other people how to produce an direct their own films.  As we say at International Film Base, we want toe create the Film Director Stars of tomorrow. I am  presenting my  Weekend Film School  <> in Sydney Australia this weekend on December 10th and 11th. This is one of the last times I will present as next year , I will delegate the film teaching to other Film Instructors Also we have our One Week Film Directors School <>  at the Gold Coast . This is a 100% Hands on Film School where you learn to make a film by actually making a film. Please leave comments as I always like to hear from you. Till next time have a great one.                     Colm O'Murchu   Director International Film Base

Make a living in the Film Industry – 5 Different Ways

July 21, 2011 by · Comments Off on Make a living in the Film Industry – 5 Different Ways 

As someone who has made his sole source of income from the Film World since 1997, I would like to outline the different ways to make a living from Film Making over the next few weeks. Film Making is very much a lifestyle choice. Most people work in Film because they love it. I can tell you that is the same for me. Today I pick my jobs and I do only well paid directing gigs such as "Dealing with Destiny" . I also like to DOP on other peoples films and often do consultancies for projects and of course I make my own passion films. I love the travel to different countries and film making has given me the opportunity to travel with my job. Next month, I am off to Qatar, France, Ireland and London where I will present our first weekend film seminar in the UK. In November, I am off to Los Angeles and Mexico. LA beckons every November as I always attend the wonderful American Film Market in Santa Monica. Since 1997, I have worked in crew roles on other peoples film sets. I have worked shooting behind the scenes footage for many different movies. I use to shoot corporates and I still shoot Music videos as I love them. My golden rule is that I never do jobs that I do not want to do, heart and soul.
Shooting on one of our Film Productions Dealing with Destiny
Since 1997, film has been my absolute source of income. Some years have been big earners and others have been quiet. The best year turnover has been close on $400,000 when films have sold well and the worst has been $80,000 when I first started. I know I have not become rich financially, however the lifestyle has made up for the lack of money. Doing what you love and been around exciting creative people who love their job certainly keeps you young. Also it is certainly more money than most people earn in jobs, they do not like. I see the future as very exciting in the film world with the Internet now converging with Television. Many star film makers will have their own channel where they actually build wealth directly in the future. Even YouTube is now moving into movie areas. Building your audience slowly over many years is a tremendous investment in your future. If you start now, over a ten year period you could build up an audience of close to 50,000 subscribers. How do I know this? Well knowning nothing and learning how to do it over the last two years, I have built a subscriber list of 3500 people and that is only in Australia. With our expansion overseas and the start of our online film school, we are expecting to attract many more subscribers. Now that we know how to attract an audience, we expect to build about 10,000 new subscribers per year. Twitter now also allows you to get your message to hundreds of thousands and not to mention fan pages on Facebook. Yes it is a very exciting new world for the up and coming film maker and the earlier you start to build an audience, the better. If you have 50,000 subscribers and 10,000 buy a copy of your film at $15, that equates to $150,000 before you even make money from your film release and the Film Market. You can learn more about this area on our 2011 Film Courses or by visiting our prime website International Film Base For the next few weeks I would like to go through the best ways and clarify the paths that earn money and how you could go about breaking into them. For this week I would like to list them off and in next weeks post go into more detail about each area
  1. Independent Film Production Micro Budget - Low Budget Feature Films (100k - 5 Million Dollar Budgets)
  2. Freelance DOP and Editor Work on other peoples short films and feature films
  3. Music Videos Corporates and Commercial Film Making
  4. Crew Work on mainstream Film Shoots for TV & Feature FIlm
  5. Working for Film Distributors and Government Industry.
  6. Mega Directing, Screenwriting or Producing on the big budget Hollywood films.
Colm O'Murchu
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Five reasons to enroll on a high quality Film Courses.

June 30, 2011 by · Comments Off on Five reasons to enroll on a high quality Film Courses. 

Here are five reasons to enroll on a high quality Film Courses.

1 You learn how to make films professionally. Many people try to do it all on their own and they end up making the same amateur mistakes. These mistakes tend to make their film efforts look amateur. I see it time and time again. Film Makers who make film after film and wonder why they are never getting into A List film festivals or getting a great reaction from their audience. Without the correct instruction, this film maker can end up permanently grounded. The main problem areas are
  • Sound
  • Poor Acting
  • Shot narrative
  • Post Production
2  The second reason to enroll on a Film Course is the networking. You meet like minded people and
Filming on set

Filming on set

this will accelerate your progress dramatically. There is nothing like meeting people with a similar passion. Many people on our courses end up collaborating on film projects after the course. One person ends up as the producer while the other is the Director and another person ends up writing the film. These people create a core film production entity. There is so much power in these combinations. I remember when I was in Film School years ago, three of us got together and in record time we had a $25,000 budget and  a 20 minute short film produced. Back then,  it was hard to raise the budgets needed to make films. You had to shoot on Super 16 mm film stock and edit on steenbacks using film print. You had to hire a negative matcher who cut your negative using your edit decisions from your work print. All in all it was an expensive process back in 1992. Somehow within six months we had made a film with a very big cast. There was a Grip and Gaffer Crew and as a young film maker, I thought all my Christmases had come at once. We had Cranes and Tracks and basically all the frills of a big budget film shoot. and this was all as a result of two other people I met on a Film Course. Today,  the Camera Lights and Sound and Grips Equipment has come very inexpensive.  Today everything has changed. 3  Knowlege of what Film Equipment you need. This is the third reason you need to attend a Film Course. You need to know what equipment to use. You need to know what the best lowest priced equipment you need for your film shoots after the Film Course ends. This part saves you thousands of dollars. You need to know what the best Camera is to use on your shoot. You need to know the best sound equipment to obtain. You need to know the best lighting combinations.  There is a lot to learn but it can be learned very quickly on a high quality film course. When you attend a course like ours, you learn all about the best equipment to use and whether you should buy or rent after the Film Course. 4 Training This is one of the most important reasons to attend a film course. You learn how to make a film using our FIlm Equipment. You learn how to
  • operate a Film Camera
  • create a Shot list
  • how to direct actors
  • how to get the best location sound
  • how to light a set effectively.
  • and much more
On a really good film course like ours, you learn how to make a film by actually shooting a real film. You get to do all the crew roles and get some experience in all the areas. This ultimately makes you a better producer or director or writer. 5 The Accelerator. A really good film school accelerates your film career dramatically. You learn how to make a film ten times faster meaning that over a six month period  you gain years on the competition and put yourself years ahead of the people who are trying to do it all on their own. 6 Great Times I always remember my Film School years fondly. When you were learning how to make films, you are finally living with your passion and moving towards your dreams. Many times we hear from our film students about how profoundly their year has changed. They tell me how many times their lives are transformed by doing something worthwhile and how it is wonderful to live life actively involved in their passion. 7 Mentorship. When you get involved with professional film makers, many times they will help you and act as a mentor. If you are a talented emerging film maker, your talent will shine and the organizers of the film course will take notice and want to help you. 8 The In Club and Work When you have successfully completed our film courses, you will be invited to join our In Film Club. Here you will hear of job opportunities and film projects. Here you will also hear of DOPs and other crew and actors that you will need to make your film happen. So for these 8 reasons, it is a really a great idea to enroll on our top quality Film Course Once again check the list of Film Courses we have at Australian  Film Base at the moment. Till next week have a great one Colm O'Murchu Director International Film Base

Four Tips for Finding the Best Location

May 17, 2011 by · Comments Off on Four Tips for Finding the Best Location 

Location Location I am very much looking forward to presenting the Weekend Film School in Sydney on  this Saturday and Sunday May 21st, 22nd. One of my favourite parts of the Weekend Film School is how we get people to meet each other and network.  On Sunday Afternoon, we launch film projects that then get produced over the following three months. If you are in town and have next weekend free,  please enroll on one of the very best film making weekends, The Sydney Weekend Film School What I want to talk about this week is Locations. Finding locations for your film is one of the easiest part of preproduction.
Beautiful Cafe Scene for Free

Beautiful Cafe Scene for Free on The Makeover

Tip One Do not be afraid to write as many locations into your script as you need for your story to be told. I love beautiful locationsand finding the best locations in your city is rather easy. There is an old adage in low budget film making that says "Shoot in a one loacation for three weeks and never move out of there. Yes that is called a play and there is nothing wrong with plays. But if you are shooting a movie, make the movie visual. One can do this by having appropriate locations in your film. Tip Two . Only have one location move per day and do your best to to schedule only one location for a full shooting day. Over a 30 day shoot, you could have 30 locations. Moving in the middle of the day chews up time. I remember supervising a student short film called Money We only had a one day shoot and we had five locations to shoot in. We spent half the day in the car driving from one location to the other.  If you have to change locations,  only move once on the day. I know this seems contrary to what Tip One outlines. It is important to find the balance. Tip Three: Make sure that you have a written agreement with the location owner. Most locations are free and are contributions to the film. Still it is very important to have an agreement. with the owner about the hours and day the location is needed for. Also outline
  • Will the location get an end credit in the film?
  • Will the location signage be seen in the film?
  • Make sure that the location is free of all external people or customers. There is nothing worse than shooting in a cafe that is still open to the public. If the location has external people, pack up and go home.
Bar Location for Free

Bar Location for Free The Makeover

Tip Four. Clean up the location after the shoot and make it cleaner than before you arrived. This is very important and I know I am stating the obvious. If you get the owner excited about your film in advance of shooting and then when you leave the location,  the owner is  happy , you will help future film makers have an easy time. That could be you again. Invite the Location Owner to all parties and screenings. Leave a great impression. Of the 55 locations that we found for The Makeover Feature Film, 44 of them were free. When an owner, contributes a location to your film, they are in a way an investor in your project. On our courses, we teach you how to find locations with ease and for free. Find out more about our courses by clicking on an interesting course on our home page

6 Tips for Attracting the Best Crew

April 29, 2011 by · Comments Off on 6 Tips for Attracting the Best Crew 

Before I get into the tips, it is important  to differentiate between two different types of crews.
  • Big Budget Crew
  • Micro Budget Crew
When you read the credits after a big budget film, often the scroll will last fifteen minutes. There are a vast myriad of different people who do many different crew roles on the set. Recently I was invited by  Director Michael Apted on to his $140 million film "The  Chronicles of Narnia The Adventures of the Dawn Treader."*. The Film was shot at the Gold Coast Warner Brothers Studio in Australia. The crowd on set resembled the entrance to a football stadium on Match Day. One could hardly move. The set was packed. So many crew were doing different jobs. One lady I spoke to was the Dialogue Coach for specifically one of the  young actresses. She probaly did ten minutes work all day. The rest of the time she was on call and doing nothing more than spectator. That is the big end of town The other end is the Micro Budget Film Crew which is all about efficiency and effectivness. Everything is about working smart and hard.  Many crew roles are double ups and one crew member could well be doing three different roles. Here are my top five tips. 1 Keep the Crew lean mean and keen. What I mean by this, is keep the crew to the bare minimum to effectively shoot. An effective crew is about 10 - 15 members. However some crews are smaller. There were days on The Makeover where we had only seven working crew members and that included me as the Director Producer and DOP. On my Online Film School and Weekend Film School, I outline the Crew needed and where to find them. I also show you how I have designed my Crew Contract. This Contract motivates and inspires crews to work smarter and more focused. In fact many of my crew treated "The Makeover" as if it was their  film. 2 Keep your shoots to five days per week  and no longer than 12 hours per day. Twelve hour days are  from arrival on set to conclusion. This is so important. Every crew member is keen to be working on the film and no one wants to be seen to be tired or a whinger. Give your crew two days off per week. When you do the above you will have a happy crew and not a bickering crew.   As a Producer or/and Director, please do not take advantage of your crews enthusiasm. Do not flog your crew. Just as an aside, time on set goes so fast. There are many times the First AD calls lunch and I will say to him" Why are you calling lunch at 9am"  He will reply. "Look at your watch. Its 1pm" Time accelerates and goes so fast on set. The reason for this is that as a Director, you are fully in the moment and a 100% focused. 3  Treat the crew with respect and love. Feed the Crew exceptionally well  Good healthy food that nourishes the crew is like filling up your car with grade A Petrol (Gasoline).  Your crew will work so much better and they will appreciate your efforts. This ultimately results in a better film. Do not  welsh on this area.  Be generous and if you are smart you can feed a crew really well for about $200 per day. You can learn all the tricks on our Online Film School or Weekend Film School 4 Ever Crew member must have a  written contract or agreement and agree willingly to the terms set in the contract. This is so important. The crew feels secure knowing that you will pay what is owed when the film is successful. Also it will protect the producer from unwarranted claims when the film is a big hit. Everyone will know what they are owed. I always add in a clause that our bookkeeper will update crew on Sales for the film. This is very important at the micro budget end of the market. 5  Always keep the crew informed about the progress of your film in film festivals and sales.  Most micro budget crews are paid in shares and a small cash payment. They work on your film for fun and career advancement. Many times, they are seeking experience and credits so that they can get the next job. Long after wrap, they will wonder what ever happened to the film. Keep them informed of the progress via regular email updates. 6 Throw the best parties mid-shoot and on the final day at wrap and at the Cast and Crew Screening. This is important because it can be a time to promote the film and celebrate the amazing achievement of shooting your film. If you want to set up a career as a regular film crew person, work your way up via working on the micro budget films. Over time  you will find yourself on the bigger budget film crews where you will be paid exceptionally well. Work begets work, so always accept the lower budget jobs when starting out. If you want the best start that money can buy please look at our practical film courses on or at our Online Film School on This way you will effectively attract work on micro budget films or/and create your very own film production. Till next week have a great one. Colm O'Murchu Director International Film Base.
Author Details: Colm O'Murchu is the owner of International Film Base in Sydney Australia. He has currently written directed and produced The Makeover Feature Film. The Film screened at the recent Cannes Independent Film Festival in France and won Best Film at the New York City Film Festival. The Film is currently on release in Australia and has sold to Pay TV in Europe. Colm has created the Online Film School that helps emerging film makers produce their own films with no budget. For more about Colm O'Murchu please go to International Film * "The  Chronicles of Narnia The Adventures of the Dawn Treader" was the 12th highest-grossing film of 2010 with over $415 million and received a nomination at the 68th Golden Globe Awards. The film was released by 20th Century Fox

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16 Steps to make your film happen now

April 14, 2011 by · Comments Off on 16 Steps to make your film happen now 

Today I want to talk about the first of sixteen steps in making your film. Step One is Screenplay. Screenplay is the foundation of any great film. However it is very important to prepare before writing a screenplay whether it is  a short film or a feature film. There are several areas one needs to get ready before writing your script.  Here are just a few of them.
  • Idea generation. The Script writer  needs to get in the right frame of mind to generate ideas.
  • Character Creation: One needs to work out the physical, sociological and psychological profiles of your characters. This is one of the most important aspects of developing a screenplay. Often it is ignored. When I was writing The Makeover, I wrote approximately 10 pages on each character and I could tell you everything about their life. I had all the detail on their family on the characters first job, first girlfriend, their obsessions, their relationship with their father mother and what their hobbies the character had.  I wrote these profiles using 27 areas of character,  I teach in the Online Film School.
  • Scene by Scene Outline is so important before you write your script. This means that you actually work out what happens in each scene. All you have to do is write the briefest of Synopses and then you have the map that will help you during the writing process.
The above is only some of what you need to prepare before writing your script. The rest we outline in the Online Film School Screenplay section. When you actually write the first draft of the script, one of the best ways to write is to write 3 pages per day. That means if you write five days a week, it will take you two months to complete your 120 page screenplay. Three pages a day usually only takes a maximum of 90 minutes and can be written a lot faster. Writing a small amount every day means that you will enjoy the process, keep your day job and have a fun topic of conversation at the dinner party that weekend. Of course you will need a script writing software. On the Online Film School we supply a free download of a script writing software that would normally be worth $200 - $300 if you bought Final Draft.  Why not get the Online Film School and get a free scriptwriting software download. Formatting your script is so important if you want to make films. To the fun of making films.  Till next week Have a great one.

Strong Mindset is exceptionally important in the film business.

August 25, 2010 by · Comments Off on Strong Mindset is exceptionally important in the film business. 

Strong Mindset is exceptionally important in the film business.

Why is that? Well when you start out in the film world, it can seem like Mount Everest is in front of you. It seems like you will never get to the summit and this can lead talented people to give up.

I think the mountain analogy is a wonderful one. I remember when I climbed Mount Kinabalu in Borneo, I was not prepared for how difficult it would be to climb. My mindset was not initially strong.

Mount Kinabalu is exceptionally steep. It just rises out of the ocean and goes up and up to 4300 meters or about 14000 feet.  It is the biggest moutain in South East Asia.  There is no let up, it is just one direction...UP.  When I started to climb the mountain, I kept looking up at what was ahead and it seemed nearly impossible. I felt exhausted and dispirited.

Once you get to the half way point at 2100 meters, you naturally begin to feel altitude sickness. What I discovered is that if I just looked at my feet and took it one step at a time, I discovered that I did not get tired or dispirited. If I just kept focused on my feet, I began to feel fine and just found a rythm. However, if I looked to the top I would once again become exhausted. When I stayed focused on the now and on where I was now, I felt fine and energized. And what happened after two days of climbing, I arrived at the summit and could see all over the island of Borneo. Beautiful.

The same is true for film. Just stay with what you are doing that day.

If you are starting out in film, set a goal of making your own short film now and take one step at a time. Keep with what you can achieve that day and when you have completed production, do your very best to get your short film out to the world via film festivals and the internet( You tube, Blip TV)

Then move on to the next film. It is a great idea to get five short films behind you and then move on to feature films or documentary at that point. Till that point, do not even think about them. Just one short film at a time.  Five Short films gives you a chance to learn how to produce and direct films and learn via film courses how to make them better and better.

The second part of a strong mindset is having a supportive team and people you like working with. Everyone has their strong points and therefore teams that work the best is where everyone is working to their strong points. That is a Producer and Director team.

There is nothing worst than feeling lost and isolated and not knowing how to get motivated to make a film. That is why it is so important to attend film courses like ours.

Why because you will

Learn how to make a short film

Network with people who want to make films

Become very motivated and find that strong mindset that you need to make films.

And if you have all ready made short films, you will re-energize and get your next film happening with enthusiasm and gusto.

Please look at our film schools on our website and we look forward to meeting you there.

Till next time, have a great week          Colm

Colm O'Murchu is the owner of Australian and International Film Base.

He has produed and directed films for the past 15 years