5 GREAT REASONS WHY IT’S NEVER TOO LATE FOR A FILM CAREER
Is it too late to seek a career in film? When it comes to filmmaking, the business has a reputation for being a young person’s game. But, like with anything else in life, if you really want something, you can always find a way to get it. This is particularly true in the case of a film career.
Do you have a vision that you’d like to share with the rest of the world? It makes no difference how old you are; anyone can do it. I am a self-taught filmmaker who has spent the last five years honing my skills.
Am I a success? At this stage, it’s difficult to answer this question. I’m not in the same league as brilliant directors like Christopher Nolan, David Fincher, and Steven Spielberg.
But the experience I’m gathering on-site every day is propelling me closer to my ambition of becoming a respected director. If you think it’s too late to start a career in film, this article will show you how to become a successful filmmaker and prove that it’s never too late.
Here are my top reasons for starting a film career at any age.
5 GREAT REASONS WHY IT’S NEVER TOO LATE FOR A FILM CAREER
Should I Become A Filmmaker?
To begin, it’s never too late to pursue a career in movies. However, making a decent living as a filmmaker is a different story altogether at the start of your career. What you must remember is that the film industry is full of freelancers who are all seeking the same types of positions that you are.
When a film production is over, your contract expires, and you must find a new project to continue learning and earning money. If you’re just starting out in the film industry, you’ll be taking a lot of low-paying projects to get your feet wet and get experience.
Even with the experience you gain from one project to the next, getting hired for major projects with large expenditures might be difficult. If you’re considering a job in the film industry, one talent you’ll need to have is the ability to network.
The more individuals you meet and create trust with on a film set, the more opportunities you’ll get to work on bigger projects.
Related Article: How To Become A Filmmaker Without Going To Film School
You Don’t Need Film School
Do you believe it is too late for you to learn the art of filmmaking by attending film school at your age? I have some good news for you: you don’t need to go to film school to get into the industry.
Why am I claiming that you don’t need to go to film school? Several brilliant directors have established themselves as cinema pioneers without ever attending film school. Directors like James Cameron, Ridley Scott, Peter Jackson, David Fincher, and Quintin Tarantino never went to film school.
James Cameron once said.“I think the most important thing if you’re an aspiring filmmaker is to get rid of the ‘aspiring’… You shoot it, you put your name on it, you’re a filmmaker. Everything after that, you’re just negotiating your budget.”
In terms of studying the trade of filmmaking, the internet has revolutionized the globe. Everything you need to know about filmmaking can be found online, and the majority of it is free.
Want to study filmmaking from the masters from the comfort of your own home? On Masterclass, take a look at this link.
Several filmmaking books available on Amazon are excellent educational resources that can point you in the proper direction. (For a list of the finest filmmaking books for budding filmmakers, see this link.) Visit your city’s local film offices to learn how you can donate your time to local film shoots.
Look into local film schools to see if there are any student films on which you can volunteer. Simply let them know that you have little experience but are prepared to learn on the fly. Simply demonstrate that you are solution-oriented and have a good attitude in getting the task done when you are allowed to work on a set.
What I can tell you about my volunteer experience is that it is difficult labor. Long hours will be required of you, and this will take a toll on your mental and physical health. This is where you’ll start to set yourself out from the crowd.
This is because many have a perception that the art of filmmaking is glamorous but is unprepared for the hard work it is.
Create Your Own Project
Film set experience is essential for every filmmaker, young or old, as it allows you to see what works and what doesn’t on a set. However, if you truly want to kickstart your film career, you need to start filming your projects right away.
If you’re the project’s director, keep in mind that you don’t need to know everything that’s going on on set. You can rely on a team of qualified filmmakers, such as a director of photography and a first assistant director.
To succeed with a passion project, you’ll need determination and passion.
Do you have a script in the works that you’d like to share with the world? Do you have a friend who has written a fantastic script that you are the only one who can direct? It’s time to get out there and start shooting.
Here are a few things you’ll need to make a wonderful film, whether it’s a short or a feature-length film. What you need to do right immediately is set aside your ego and learn to roll with the punches. Every filmmaker, whether young or seasoned, makes errors. It’s all part of the filmmaking process.
If you’re directing or producing a film, exude a cheerful, upbeat attitude that your cast and crew will feed off of. This helps a lot during the production of a film, especially when things don’t go as planned.
When you’re directing, you’re the ship’s captain. Be patient with your team and learn to let go of things quickly. This entails learning how to pick your battles and decide which fights are worth fighting for. If you’re thinking about directing, one piece of advice I can give you is to attend acting training.
Simply understanding the trade of acting firsthand makes it simpler to communicate your vision to your on-set actors and get them on board. Last but not least, make a tonne of movies. It’s the only way to learn how to be a better filmmaker, no matter how strange or horrible they are.
Side note: Because filmmaking is a team effort, you’ll want to surround yourself with the greatest crew possible. Instead of hiring buddies with no experience, recruit a team with experience, as they will become your new friends in the future.
Related Article: Best Tips On Getting Accepted Into Short Film Festivals
Directors Who Started Late In Their Film Career
What I love about filmmaking is that it is a collaborative process with high energy that makes you feel like a kid every day on a set.
If you are still wondering if it is too late to start a film career, here are some examples of the best directors who didn’t make his/her feature until their 30s and 40s.
So never say never in making your film masterpiece.
- Akira Kurosawa – Japanese film director and screenwriter, who directed 30 films in a career spanning 57 years. He is regarded as one of the most important and influential filmmakers in the history of cinema. At the age of 33, he directed his first feature, “Judo Saga“, and his breakthrough film, “Rashomon” came at the age of 40.
- Ridley Scott – The English filmmaker regarded as a master in the visual art of filmmaking, directed his first feature, “The Duellists” at the age of 40. His breakthrough film, “Alien“, came at the age of 42.
- Michael Haneke – Austrian film director and screenwriter. His work often examines social issues and depicts the feelings of estrangement experienced by individuals in modern society. His first feature film, “The Seventh Continent“, was directed when he was at the age of 47. Michael Haneke’s breakthrough feature film, “The Piano Teacher“, came at the age of 59.
- Ang Lee – Acclaimed Filmmaker who almost gave up his career in film making due to rejection from Hollywood, directed his first feature “Pushing Hands” at the age of 38. His breakthrough feature film “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” came at the age of 45.
- Andrea Arnold – A former actress who decided to start a new career path in filmmaking started her first feature “Red Road” at the age of 45, and her breakthrough feature film “Fish Tank” came at the and age of 48.
Is it too late to begin a filmmaking career when you think you are past your prime?
My answer is no. Just do it. But do it your way, not Hollywood’s way. Anybody can act, anybody can write, anybody can be a director or producer, but you can’t do it in Hollywood until you prove you can do it.
So I say, “hell yeah,” if you have the right intentions. If you are dreaming about an Oscar, then you don’t belong in filmmaking. If you dream about bringing life to creative ideas, acting, or writing, just do it because you don’t need Hollywood’s permission.
It is clear that it is never too late to begin a career in movies. I was 25 years old when I first tried my hand in the film industry, and I wasn’t happy with the results.
I gave up on my dreams and went into sales. Now that I’m approaching 50, the last five years of film set experience have put me in a good spot. However, each person’s tale is unique; some will believe this path will be difficult at a given age, while others will not.
The beautiful thing about filmmaking today is that it’s a lot easier than it used to be. Technology has made it possible to make movies using incredibly low-cost equipment, which you may begin doing right now.
I believe the industry has evolved for the better. There are a plethora of ways to put your skills on display. Filmmakers can reach a larger audience by using platforms like Youtube. Whatever you decide, I wish you the greatest of luck and opportunities.
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About the author: Trent (IMDB | Youtube) has spent 10+ years working on an assortment of film and television projects. He writes about his experiences to help (and amuse) others. If he’s not working, he’s either traveling, reading or writing about travel/film, or planning travel/film projects.