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What Exactly Is Film Making?

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I guess the word speaks for itself, film making is the process of making a film from a story idea you have yourself, or being hired by another to make a film. A film maker is in charge of script writing, shooting, editing and distribution to the public. Film making involves the employment of a large number of people and, at times, it has taken several years to complete. This is dependant upon the complexity of the subject, and the problems that come up while film making.

The stages of film making are:

1. Development- The script is written and formatted into a workable guide for the film.

2. Pre-production- This is preparing for shooting the film, crew and cast are hired, locations are chosen, and the sets are built.

3. Production- The film maker shoots the film in it's entirety.

4. Post-production- The film is edited, music, sound effects, and any other effects are added.

5. Distribution- A distributor takes the film on, and it is shown to the public.

Development: The film maker's idea, or a story found by the producer, is transformed into a usable script. This story can come from many sources books, true stories, plays, other films, etc. When the theme is chosen, a step outline and synopsis is developed. This will break the story down into scenes of one paragraph in length. A treatment of 25-30 pages, is then prepared, describing the mood and characters of the story.

The screenplay is then developed, this is edited as many times as needed to make the story viable. A film maker may want to contact a film distributor at this time to assess the market for this type of film to assure it's financial success. Hollywood distributors may be hard to sell, and will consider genre, target audience, the success of similar films, the directors of the film, and the actors that may appear in the film. DVD sales and distribution rights need to be taken into account. The film is then presented to film financiers. If they like what they see and hear from the pitch, financial backing is offered. This can be offered from major film studios, the film council, or independent investors.

Pre-production: A production company is created and an office for the company is opened. The film comes to life with a story board and drawn out with the help of concept artists and talented illustrators. A film budget will be comprised at this time.

The film maker will hire a crew. The budget and type of film will determine the type and size of the crew.

Production: The movie is filmed, and more crew will be hired. To help manage this stage of film making. The director is in charge of most of what happens on the set, but he will need to delegate responsibility to others until the film is done.

Post production: The film is edited for time and best shots using film and a mixture of film and video.

Distribution: The movie is released to theaters and duplicated according to need. Press kits, posters and other advertising materials are published to advertise the movie. A campaign to launch the film with much publicity is launched.

The movie will succeed or fail. Profits from this are divided between the production company, and the distributor.

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