The Director on set

I know it has been a while since I last wrote to you. Life has been busy and the first month of the year  has just slipped away. My highlight of the month was my trip to New Zealand and the Auckland Weekend Film School. I also visited the South Island and paid a visit to some of the locations for Lord of the Rings near Glenorchy.

Today I would like to talk about the Director on Set. There are many different seasons in the film process and ironically the Shoot is the most intense exciting  and shortest season of all.

In Film Production, there are two different types of Directors.

The Heart and Soul Director is involved with the script from start to finish, feels passionate about the film, will take a salary cut to get the perfect scene, is involved deeply in postproduction and often hangs out at film festivals and screenings and meets the audience.

The Gun for Hire Director is motivated by money and keeping a job. They are recruited often just before preproduction starts and in some cases they only hang around for The shoot.
However the vast majority of Gun for Hire directors will work on Post production for some months after the shoot. Once they have a Directors Cut, they will hand it over to the Creative Producer who will make  further adjustments to the film.

Both types of Directors are at the centre of the production in the shooting process.
The shoot involves many different people.  The Director speaks to only certain Key people in the Crew. The main people are:

The Actors: Obviously the Director will direct the actors.

The DOP (Director of Photography). The Director requires the DOP to execute the Shot List or Storyboard and create the visual look that the director is after. Its very important that these two people get along.

The First AD The person who keeps the film on schedule and the crew working hard. The Driector will be in constant communication with the Director.

The Continuity Person. This person sits side by side with the Director at Video Village and looks for any continuity errors and problems with the shot. For example, microphones that have slipped into frame ,any nasty camera reflections. She is also a sounding board for the Director. They can be very close in the shoot.

The Sound Recordist The Director talks to the Sound Recordist about any sound issues during shooting

Standby Wardrobe. If the Director is not happy with any costumes, Standby wardrobe will hear about it.

Standby Makeup Likewise the Director may not be happy with certain makeup and will want a change

Standby Props. If props are needed to be altered or placed in different places Standy props will need to change them.

These are some of the people that the director will talk to during the shoot.   A Director is tested throughout the shoot. It takes experience to learn how to be a Director so it is very important to learn from  a Directing School and learn how to Direct.

Please look at our Film Directing Schools on

Till next time
Have a great one.

Colm O’Murchu

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