≡ Menu

The Director’s Chair Issue #159 – November 6, 2014 (The Business of Film)

Free Monthly Ezine for Independent Filmmakers

November 6, 2014                Scene 15 – Take 11

Published once a month.

Publisher: Peter D. Marshall
Email: mailto:pdm@actioncutprint.com
Website: http://actioncutprint.com
Blog: http://filmdirectingtips.com


Dear Filmmaker,

You are receiving “The Director’s Chair” because you (or someone
using your email address) requested a subscription.

PRIVACY STATEMENT: This Subscriber List is a private mailing list
and will not be made available to other companies or individuals.
I value every Subscriber and respect your privacy.

Unsubscribe Information

To Unsubscribe to this Ezine, reply to this email with
UNSUB in the Subject line

Ezine Contents

1. Introduction
2. Bonuses for Subscribing to The Director’s Chair
3. Essentials of Film Directing 2 Day Workshop
4. FEATURE ARTICLE: The Business of Film
5. Film Directing Coach Services
6. Subscriber Shameless Self-Promotion
7. Filmmaking Links of Interest
8. Product Promotion and Film Workshops
9. Subscribe and Unsubscribe Information
10. Copyright Information

1. Introduction

Welcome to Issue #159 of The Director’s Chair, Nov. 6, 2014

1. The Feature Article this month is called: The Business of
Film: 5 (very) short articles I’ve written about surviving in the
film and TV business.  (Read the rest of this article below.)

2. Please send any comments, suggestions, questions or advice to:

2. Two Bonuses For Subscribing To The Director’s Chair

Thank you very much for subscribing to this ezine.

BONUS #1 – Here is the link to download Day One (41 pages) of
“The Art and Craft of the Director Audio Seminar.”

BONUS #2 – Here is the link to download the first 30 pages of the
“Script Breakdown and Film Scheduling Online Course.”

IMPORTANT: Once the pdf file has opened on your browser, go to
File, “Save Page As” and save the file to your desktop. All links
will now work in the pdf file.

3. Essentials of Film Directing 2 Day Workshop

Essentials of Film Directing 2 Day Workshop
Sponsored by Raindance Vancouver

My next 2 day film directing workshop is called Essentials of
Film Directing in Vancouver, Canada on November 29 & 30, 2014.

These two comprehensive and intense days are a must for any
filmmaker wanting to reach the next level of career success as a
film or television director in the competitive film or TV

This 2 day live event is sponsored by Raindance Vancouver.

Day One – The Director as Storyteller

A director is a storyteller. A director is a project manager.  A
director is a visionary. Many hats to wear and many
responsibilities to balance. Most first time or early directors
stumble into the job or fake it on their first shoot, but here’s
a workshop that will provide the guidance, tools and tricks
gleaned from both the best of Hollywood filmmaking to the most
current of successful indie film and television projects.

Day 1 will introduce you to the essential roles of the film and
TV director and covers the director as story teller, the business
and politics of film, the director’s pre-production activities,
script & scene analysis and the director’s visual concept.

Day One Outline:

1. Introduction
2. How to Make a Movie 101
3. 7 Step Film Directing Process
4. Class Exercise (Plot Demonstration)
5. What is a Director?
6. Directing a Film – What is Expected?
7. The Three Types of Director
8. The Business and Politics of Film
9. How to Work and Survive in “The Business”
10. Differences Between TV and Feature Films
11. The Director’s Pre-Production Activities
12. The Director’s Top-Three Creative Team
13. The Reductionism Breakdown Theory
14. Practical Breakdown of Scripts and Scenes
15. The Classic Three-Act Structure
16. The Director and the Script
17. Script Analysis Overview
18. General Script Analysis
19. General Scene Analysis
20. Power of Montage (Film Editing)
21. Six Film Editing Guidelines
22. Mise-en-Scene / Subworld
23. The Director’s Visual Concept

Day Two – Getting Ready for the Film Set

Day 2 will introduce you to the more in-depth world of the film
director and covers character analysis and development, the
director-actor relationship, text and subtext and the casting

Day Two Outline

1. Understanding the Language of Film
2. The Psychology Behind the Shot
3. Shot Lists and Storyboards
4. The 5 Groups of On-Camera Players (The Talent)
5. The Four Types of Actor
6. Observing Human Behavior and Emotions
7. The Kuleshov Effect
8. Motive Determines Behavior
9. Character Analysis and Development
10. The Director-Actor Relationship
11. The Actor’s Language
12. Text and Subtext
13. Character Objectives
14. Action Verbs
15. Result Directing
16. Working with Actors
17. Class Exercise (Shot Listing Demonstration)
18. The Casting Process
19. Director Casting Guidelines
20. The 5 Stages of Shooting a Scene
21. What is Blocking?
22. Class Exercise (Objectives & Subtext Demonstration)
23. That’s a Wrap

Click Here to find out the location and registration fee for this
2 day film directing workshop. http://bit.ly/10QaneU

4. Feature Article: The Business of Film: 5 (very) Short Articles

Here are 5 (very) short articles I’ve written about surviving in the
film and TV business.

Why Hollywood is Not the Only Game in Town.

Filmmaking is an artistic expression – but it’s also a huge
business and the economics of the industry are quite complex.

Here’s a warning from a February 23, 2013 article in The
Economist: “The business model within film is broken. The
economics of the film industry are changing.

Profits are down, even though Hollywood is making splashier films
for new, fast-growing markets. Meanwhile, television, once the
unglamorous sister, is enjoying record earnings and unprecedented
critical acclaim.”

For Hollywood studios, the decision on whether or not a movie is
a hit or a bomb is usually based on box office gross.

If a movie has made money, it’s called a “success.” But if a
movie doesn’t recoup it’s costs, it’s called a “failure.” (In
which case somebody usually gets fired!)

Many times, artistic excellence and technical proficiency are
usually ignored.

Awards are welcome, but, for the most part, studio bosses don’t
care if a movie becomes a cult classic or if it changes popular
culture. They only care about the monetary gain!!!

But thankfully, Hollywood is not the only game in town.

There are thousands of filmmakers worldwide (just like yourself)
who all have different reasons to be in the industry – as well as
different distribution platforms for their work.

Some people work for the art; others hope to have an impact on
history; and others are just craftsmen, artisans, and contractors
working in the industry.

But what we all need to understand is that the film industry is
a huge enterprise. And the indie filmmakers are the

When they make a new film, they are gambling more than just
money – they’re gambling their reputations and their


Find Producers who can Balance Your Skills

Good directors know their strengths and weaknesses when it comes
to the business of filmmaking. So they partner up with a producer
who they trust and who can balance them out.

A good producer knows the importance of balancing their artistic
interests with a thorough understanding of the business of
filmmaking and the entertainment industry as a whole.

There’s a great deal of money and hundreds of careers on the line
every time the camera rolls. And when you enter this business,
you step into the world of ”entertainment.”

Television and movies are just one part of this “make-believe”
environment – dance, theatre and music are other examples.


A Recipe for Disaster

This is a business of artistic expression, massive egos and huge
amounts of cash – a recipe for disaster if I ever saw one! It’s
also a business where you can lose your soul if you’re not

So always remember the often cited (and industry changeable)
quote from Hunter S. Thompson:

“The (television) business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a
long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good
men die like dogs. There’s also a negative side.”


Getting a Job in “The Business”

Getting a job in this business is not just about how many credits
you have. It’s also about:

1. Who you know.

2. Who you’ve previously worked with.

3. Who you’ve upset (Executives, Producers, Actors)

And sometimes, getting a job in this business, is just about
timing and good luck – being at the right place at the right
time when the phone rings!

Burning Your Bridges

Always be aware of what the consequences will be if you “burn a
bridge” with any studio, production company, director or crew.

In other words, before you say or do something that you may
regret, ask yourself these two questions:

1.  What is the short term benefit of my action going to be?

2.  What will the result of this action have on any future work?

5. Film Directing Coach – Peter D. Marshall

Actors, Singers and Athletes Have Private Coaches. So Why Not
Film and TV Directors? http://actioncutprint.com/filmdirectingcoach/

Hilary Swank used an acting coach to prepare for her role in Boys
Don’t Cry. She won her first Academy Award.

Singer Renee Fleming has always used a vocal coach. She has won
several Grammy Awards.

Rafael Nadal’s coach urged him on from the sidelines during his
Wimbledon tennis tournament win in 2010.

Arnold Palmer improved his game with the help of a coach. Even
Tiger Woods has had several coaches.

As a matter of fact, winners in nearly every profession
(athletes, actors, singers, business executives) know that
without the right coach, they won’t perform at their peak.

They know that without the support of an experienced and
qualified coach, they would constantly struggle to achieve

So if these top professionals in their respective fields use
coaches, why not film directors?

So why hire me as your film directing coach?

Along with my international teaching experiences and my 39 years
of professional filmmaking experience (as a TV Director and
Feature 1st AD), I feel I have the necessary qualifications to
help you achieve your dreams of being a creative and successful
independent film director.

With that in mind, I would like to introduce you to my Film
Directing Coaching services via Skype:

6. Subscriber Shameless Self-Promotion (Free Advertising)

The Director’s Chair gives you an incredible opportunity to get
Free Advertising for your services and your films.

Each month, I give two subscribers an opportunity to promote
themselves, their company or their productions in this section.

So if you want over 6000 filmmakers around the world to know
about you and your films, please send me your “shameless
self-promotion” to: mailto:pdm@actioncutprint.com.

Please limit your promotion to 300 words. I reserve the right to
edit the promotion for length, spelling and formatting.


(1) “Preparing For Takeoff: Preproduction For The Independent
Filmmaker” By Arthur Vincie

You have the camera, time, and money (or credit card), so why
don’t you just start shooting?  Well, you could.  But why not
take the time to really think through what you’re doing?
“Preparing For Takeoff” will give you the tools you need to
prepare your project thoroughly.

Subjects covered include:

* For directors: script analysis, previsualization, location
scouting, working with crew, casting, rehearsals, staying
organized during the shoot

* For producers: forming a production company, breaking down and
scheduling a script, budgeting, working with SAG and unions,
hiring crew

* For both: how to work with people, market your project, rework
the script

Based on the author’s experience of line producing 13 features,
post-supervising four, directing two, and running a production
company for over seven years.

Website (http://preparingfortakeoffbook.com) includes
downloadable forms, budget and schedule templates, and periodic

Available now on Amazon:

Or direct from the website:

Published by Focal Press

About the Author: Arthur Vincie has over fifteen years of film
and television experience as a line producer, producer and
director.  He’s line produced or production managed numerous
feature films and is active in the NYC filmmaking community.  He
recently directed the sci-fi feature “Found In Time,” which won
five “Best Sci-Fi Feature” awards as well as “Best Feature” at
the Art of Brooklyn Film Festival, has been to 22 festivals to
date, and is now available on streaming/VOD channnels.  He’s
written articles on various topics for “MovieMaker,” “Indie
Slate,” “Student Filmmaker,” http://Provideocoalition.com, and
http://mixform.com, and runs Chaotic Sequence Inc., a
production/consulting/education company.

7. Filmmaking Links of Interest

1. Sam Mendes’s 25 Rules for Directors

2. Three famous cinematographers are offering online courses in
filmmaking http://bit.ly/ZR1Zva

3. What makes low budget films sell?

4. 6 Filmmaking Tips From James Gunn

5. 6 Filmmaking Tips from Jim Jarmusch

8. Product Promotion And Film Workshops

From time to time, I will contact you to inform you of film
workshops, filmmaking products or Online courses that I feel are
beneficial to filmmakers like yourself. Of course, you are under
no obligation to purchase anything – I only offer this
information as a service to subscribers of this free ezine.

9. Subscribe and Unsubscribe Information

1. To Subscribe to this Ezine, send an email to
mailto:pdm@actioncutprint.com with SUB as the Subject

2. To Unsubscribe to this Ezine, reply to this email with UNSUB
in the Subject line

3. To Change Your Email Address, send an email with your old and
new email address to mailto:pdm@actioncutprint.com

4. To Read Back Issues of The Director’s Chair, visit:

5. Share This Ezine: Remember to share this ezine by email.
Forward it to your friends and associates.

6. Reprint This Ezine: This Ezine may be reprinted with
permission. Email me at: mailto:pdm@actioncutprint.com

10. Copyright Information

Copyright (c) 2000-2014
ActionCutPrint.com Peter D. Marshall
All Rights Reserved