The UK Film Industry
An array of people can be found behind an engrossing cinematic experience. Their work takes place over a series of distinct steps, each one with its own particular purpose and environment.
While new entrants often successfully identify a particular role they intend to work towards, they tend to overlook the route to take them there. A key mistake for many looking for their first job is not to consider the area they want to work in and how they can put their skills to best use.
As each stage in the process has a different focus and requires its own skill set, the work within any particular step can be of a similar nature and so it’s worth considering which most appeals.
While each stage is distinct and deals with a unique aspect of film-making, in practice people often work across more than one step or work closely with others in different stages because of the influence their work has on someone else’s.
So while a writer will work throughout development, they may also find themselves called upon during production to redraft certain scenes. Likewise, a composer would do the bulk of their work in post-production, when they have a cut of the film to score to, but may also be involved at an earlier stage to begin working on pivotal melodies or perhaps to persuade financiers of the talent behind the film.
Some roles involve work across the majority of stages. Producers will often drive projects from start to finish, while Directors ensure the vision for the film is maintained throughout. Marketing can be usefully employed for various different purposes at all stages and Production Companies will often consist of a host of people shepherding stories throughout the film-making process.
It’s worth noting that you shouldn’t feel constrained to gaining experience in only one of the steps; in fact those that have a first-hand understanding of several stages can present a stronger proposition when applying for work.
All film-making, at whatever budget level and regardless of the intended audience, follows this step outline; an idea is needed before anything is possible, then the resources for making the idea a reality must be brought together. The physical production of a film and the editing of the story must be considered before showing it to viewers.
While this section will show how the UK industry approaches these various stages, low-cost digital film-making and the internet have opened things up so that determined individuals can tell their stories without a cast and crew of thousands behind them. It has never been easier to bring your own stories to the screen.