How to be a director

Being a director requires a lot of perspective, hard work and patience. It doesn’t just mean giving directions to actors or deciding the shots, it means having the patience to bring to life your unique vision and perspective on a story. There is no singular path to being a director but the driving force behind your passion to tell better stories is you. In order to become a director all, you need to do is go and shoot something and that’s it, you’re a director. But if you want to make film-making and direction your career, then there are a few steps and paths you will have to follow, such as:

  1. Analyze films: Analyzing films that inspire you can help you understand the hard process that went into making the film, what approach the director wanted to adopt while telling a particular story, why they chose a specific shot or how the film intertwines several stories into each other. All these aspects can teach you how to direct you films in a better way and can also help you understand how your favorite filmmakers developed their unique styles.
  2. Write and Direct a short: A short film is your calling card as a director, a studio won’t just give you a huge film to direct, you have to make them come to you. A short film does exactly this as it shows the world and studio executives what talent you possess and how you tell a particular story. A short film doesn’t require a huge budget or studio backing, if done right and kept contained a short film can help you launch your career. A contained story with a tight budget can be example of how you handle your shoots and leave an imprint on each frame.
  3. Learn leadership and teamwork: Being a director carries a lot of weight on a set and with that weight come a lot of responsibilities. A director is the final say on a set and everyone’s problem solver is the director. A director has to ensure that his vision is being carried out while ensuring that the film doesn’t go over budget. Teamwork and Leadership are the most important qualities a director must have in order to lead his team towards a fruitful output.
  4. Develop a director’s reel: A director’s reel is a visual resume for any studio to study and examine if they ever want to hire him/her. As directing a film is a huge responsibility and requires a lot of talent, a director’s reel is the perfect way to show studios what past work you have done. Your reel acts as your identity for any studio when they’re in the process of hiring you. A director’s reel can be compilation of short films, patchwork, commercials, music videos, etc.
  5. Submit to film festivals: Film festivals are great to get an audience for your film. However, film festivals are tough to get into, festivals such as Sundance or Cannes are the crème when it comes to art-house cinema and festivals. But young filmmakers shouldn’t directly try to aim for such large festivals but should try to get into smaller festivals as this will help you film and yourself gain traction. A set of positive reviews from several film festivals can be just the boost you need to get your film a bigger distributor or a bigger producer.

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