This is my look into 5 roles in the Film industry and how they work and link with each other as well as a look into the ethical and legal implications of content sharing in today’s online world. I’m going to look into the roles of the Director, Sound Designer, Editor, Director Of Photography and the Script Supervisor.
Director The Director is the brains behind the project and the creative lead throughout the film-making process.They are employed by the executive producer or producer of a TV Station, Film or TV production company or hired as freelance and work on the entire production process from start to the editing process.They are important in helping visualise the script.
A Director requires good leadership skills to help manage the vision of the film efficiently within the budget as well as managing a wide range of people from various departments work together with that same vision and goal, ensuring they all do their best. They need to have some knowledge in all areas of film-making to help give them a greater understanding of the various roles in the process.
They need to be patient as they have to work with a wide range of people from different teams and roles as well as keeping a good working atmosphere within a busy and high stress environment.
Being in charge, they work with the producers as well as the higher ups in the film process such as the Director Of Photography to help with visualising how scenes will look, The assistant Director, as the right hand with planning to ensure and efficient shoot, the production designer to help the costume and sets fit the idea and look the director is going for, and the editor, to help piece the clips, sound and everything together to create the final visualization.
The Director also works with other members of the crew, instructing them, such as lighting, wardrobe and make-up to contribute to the final look of the film.
Sound Designer The sound designer is in charge and responsible for all the sound recording during the filming process. This is mostly dialogue but can also include sound effects, atmosphere effects and the score use. Before filming, They discuss with the director and producer the best method to capture sound which works well with the directors style of shooting whether that be mono, stereo, surround etc., requiring specific equipment
During the process, the Sound Designer ensures that all sound is captured properly for every take and there’s no background or unwanted noise as well as the audio levels captured are loud and clear. Most sets are a challenge and require the sound team and sound designer/mixer to deal with costume rustle, generator hum and other equipment sound as well as dealing with the placement of mikes as to record the best possible audio while ensuring the camera doesn’t enter the frame.
Sound mixers must usually have a variety of skills including having good hearing and being able to concentrate on the sound needing to be recorded in a loud and busy set as well as knowing how to manipulate this sound based on the environment to best suit the scene. They must have advanced knowledge in the various pieces of equipment on set and they will be using for recording, playback and editing.
As with the director, sound designers/mixers must be able to communicate well with the director as well as other members of the team to ensure co-ordination, such as working with the camera crew to ensure the mics positioning works with the shot and working with the other departments while under pressure.
Editor The editor is an extremely important role in post production and is the one who gathers and cuts together all the various pieces of the film and puts them together to create the final product which will be shipped and seen by the director to evaluate and help along.
Throughout production, depending on the product, whether it be a Film or TV show, the various clips will come in while being shot for the editor to piece together as films tend not to be shot in the order of events, so this requires an understanding of the pre production content such as the script, storyboards etc. to help edit bit by bit.
In pre-production, the editor works closely with the director to help decide how to make the script so it can be easily made work within the time constraints of the projects runtime as well as how to make it possible. During filming, they look at the various clips collected daily, checking the quality to ensure they meet standards and to catch out any errors which may not have been seen by the other teams on set. They also check the continuity and other various aspects of scenes by editing them together to check the performance of various scenes, ensuring they make sense and work well within the context of the overall plot. During post, the editor and director work closely together again to assemble what’s known as the directors cut which then must be approved by the producers.
Editors must have a good sense and understanding of storytelling and the various underlings and intricacies that a plot may contain as well as how different visuals, rhythm and pace can be used to tell a story. They also must have a good eye in visuals to be able to know their vision on the style, to establish the look and flow of the film. Editors must be technically competent in most areas, such as sound, resolution, camera equipment buy most importantly various video editing software packages such as Adobe Premiere Pro, Final Cut, Davinci Resolve, Lightworks and others. They require good communication as they work closely with the script supervisor and possibly other editors.
Locations Manager The locations manager is in charge of finding the best locations to film which best match the directors vision while being within a reasonable budget and while being safe and accessible for the crew and actors. This is a hugely important role to the production of a film as the location of the set has a huge impact on the look and feel of the film.
The Location manager researches and discusses the various set and local possibilities with the Director and production designers as well as other head departments to ensure the vision and quality will be met and that the location manager has an understanding of the various locations they will have to go scouting for. This may include deserts, forests, Victorian homes, fields etc. They arrange visits to these places and take photographs and notes as well as discuss the costs to later bring back to the director.
During filming, the location manager will manage the location, ensuring all cast members have access to transport and know how to get there. They also negotiate parking, noise reduction from roads or nearby housing, power sources as well as catering. Any official permissions that may be required will also be taken care of and discussed with the sites manager or owner. Afterwards, the location manager is tasked with the clean-up and ensuring that the location is cleaned and locked up, returning it to a satisfactory state.
Location managers must have a good eye for architecture, including historical impacts and different eras for what may best fit within the story as well as good visualisation on how an area/location could be turned into a set. They must have an interest in photography and be able to capture images to present to the director and teams later. A location manager must be able to communicate well and in tense situations as they will have to discuss and negotiate with permissions and access to areas to film. Finally, they must have a good sense of direction or be able to read maps and locate what areas they think may be best suited.
Director Of Photography The Director of Photography is the heart of the look, feel and atmosphere captured in how the film looks. Their main goal is to work on how the film may look, in terms of how each set may be shot through framing to create a certain look as well as the lighting and camera movement to portray an atmosphere best suited to the scene and plot. They must ensure every shot is usable and mark down when they’re not.
They work with the director to discuss the look and feel of the film, looking at lighting and other aspects with them as well as working with the location Manager to discuss how it may look and be shot at the various locations as well as what equipment will be needed in that location due to weather or lighting changes to help keep a consistent look throughout the shoot for the film. Later in post, they work with the Editor/colourist in post production to work and see how the various shots should be colour graded to match the mood of the story.
On set, the DoPs and camera crews arrive early to rehearse for the shoots later to ensure as least frustration as possible to avoid any unnecessary footage taking up storage and time. They also discuss with the director, the various movements of the camera and actors along with any special requirements or lighting and bring these up to the camera.
A Director of Photography must have a good eye for composition and framing, understanding the intricacies of how a story is told through a shot as well as how lighting and camera movement can add or change the emotion portrayed. They must have an in depth knowledge of cameras, being able to decide which is best for shooting where and what camera would be the best suited for the lighting and weather as well as lenses and the aperture required for a certain look to be achieved. They must have editing skills for during post production, more importantly on colour grading and have a good eye on how colour affects how the scene looks even if subtly. Finally, they must be good at organization and communication, working hand in hand with the camera, acting and all other crew members, researching the area, weather and making sure this information is shared and ensuring the camera team knows what’s expected with various shots as this can arise conflicts which can be stressful.