After watching a great film. Some of us dream of making a film one day. but, not everyone is able to assess the hard work behind making that film. They can watch the film’s casting, budget, and film making videos after release. Even so, the entire process of film-making is quite challenging and long.

Whether you are a novice or want to get an idea of ​​the filmmaking process. In this post, you will gain reliable knowledge of what steps should take to make a film a hit on a theater screen. Additionally, if you want to be a part of a film or TV production, it will be very easy for you to choose any one film. To make a career in the film making profession.

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The Process of film making

Film Production Stages - waytovfx

The process of film making divided into many phases. although there are four main phases of production common to most produced films. Which are:

1. Development

2. Pre-Production

3. Production or Principal Photography

4. Post Production

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1. Development :

The first phase of a movie is the development and it is an initial stage of film-making. Where the idea for the film is born and the screenplay is ready. if the screenplay is a special script. then the screenwriter is writing it on his own otherwise writer can approach a producer.

Film writer - waytovfx
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A Producer will try every possible resource to found a story suitable for a movie. The producer can always choose an original screenplay or offer a screenwriter to create a script from the book or print media, he has obtained the rights for.

Once the producer has the script. the next step for him is to find the right director for the script. as a director is the soul of any film and must have a proper vision for the script. In fact, without a vision director, the film cannot be satisfying for the audience. And then comes the back-bone, of any film financing.

Once the producer has obtained the financing. the film is given a green light and they can move on to the next stage of film making which is the pre-production

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2. Pre-Production

Pre-production - waytovfx
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The script is ready, the finance team has the budget and allocated to every stage according to need. many initial things need to be chosen In this phase. because at this stage the only movie gets all the things which are going to be needed in the next phase like :

  • Story-boarding
  • A schedule for shooting
  • All Costumes and Props
  • All Equipment

Also, along with the recruitment of cast and crew, Casting director, location manager, Production Manager, Director of Photography, The Production Designer, The Sound Designer, The Art Director, The Music Composer. VFX supervisors and of course, actors will also be recruited at this phase.

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3. Production or Principal Photography

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So, the script of the film has been finalized, all your equipment is also booked. All the locations for the shoot locked. storyboarding is completed, and the entire crew also at the place. Now you are ready for the shooting, and this process of film making called production. also known as principal photography.

Films shoot takes place in several stages and involves many things like setting up props, lighting, and sound. Also, the actors are dressed up in their costumes, etc.

Moreover, to run the shooting process, some people working with the director are present on the film’s set. who and their responsibilities are:

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The First and Second Assistant Directors (AD):

The First AD runs the set and ensures how much time each department should get for related work. At the same time, it also ensures that everything is happening on time and also takes care of safety.

Together, the second AD works with the first AD and manages to prepare the daily progress sheets. As well as ensure that the camera and crew prepare as per schedule.

Being the First Assistant Director standing on your feet and being able to solve any problem. Depending on the size and budget of the film, the First AD may have an army of PAs (production assistants). The PA works with the First AD unless they have been assigned to a specific department.

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The Script supervisor:

The script supervisor sits with the director and works to track the continuity of the film. The script supervisor follows the script. and monitors any changes that occur during the shooting. They pay full attention to every detail and supervise each shoot.

Additionally, he interacts along with the camera and sound department. and ensures the slate is correct, also at the end of each day produces a production report and notes for the editor.

VFX supervisor:

VFX supervisors work on a film from the early stages of film-making. They are the main point of contact between a VFX studio and the film’s director or producer.  decide what VFX is required for every shot of the film. VFX supervisors are present for filming during production. so they can see if the shots are satisfactory in which VFX elements are needed. They oversee the quality of all the work produced and ensure that it is in line with the director’s vision. and to achieve that they work with the camera and lighting department. The VFX supervisor continues to lead his team until the last shot is over.

VFX supervisors are responsible for the entire VFX project. They manage the VFX pipeline, including all the VFX artists that work in this process. They have final responsibility for the VFX elements produced. for a project by their company or studios.

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Director Of Photography and Cameramen:

Gaffer, Key Grip, or Electric. First Camera Assistant, Second Camera Assistant. and Sound Mixer is all the necessary members of the team. Gaffer is in charge of all lighting on the set and works with the Director of Photography (DoP). Key Grip works with the DOP and is in charge of all equipment for lighting. Then for Grip and Electric, there are crew members. who swing between these departments and are often referred to as the best boys.

The first camera assistants pull focus. as well as prepare the camera for the shoot and swap the lens and accessories required for various shots. Whereas, the second camera assistant works with the first camera assistant. and handles making each slate. Also, he keeps the battery ready and swaps memory cards or hard disks

Sound Department

Sound departments produce all types of music for a film. And records all the necessary sounds during the film making. The sound department also provides all the requirements related to the sound on the set.

And, the entire crew continues working in the same way. until the entire shoot is over or the director says “It’s a rap!”

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4. Post Production:

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Post-production is the final and very crucial department of the film making process. Where ranging from review to editing, VFX, sound mixing, and DI work is done. The director works with the editor to choose the scenes they like. At the same time, the VFX supervisor and other departments work on the shots. are chosen by the director. This is the time when the director watches the entire film the first time. and can decide again whether any sequence of the film needs work again.

Though, VFX touches each stage of the filmmaking process. but the majority of the best work of VFX happens only in the post-production phase. This is divided into several processes and departments. and starts with creating a 3D element, and ends with composing and delivering.

Also, check out our Blog Departments and Key rolls for VFX Artists,  and Important Skills and Qualifications required for more information.

I hope this column has given you an overview of the film making process and the career opportunities available to you. Now it is up to you, at which stage of the film making you want to make your career. Also, I am planning to keep updating this often to make sure it remains relevant and helpful. Please reach out to me via the comments section or write here with any suggestions or questions.

About the Author

Arun Sharma

Founder & Editor

I am a VFX Artist and have been working in the VFX industry since 2010. Most recently, I have worked in 1917 and The Lion King movies. The artistic drive and the technical challenges of an artist are a perfect fit for me. I love expanding my knowledge as well as helping other colleagues.

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