8 Excellent PRO Filmmaking Tips for New Directors

Words of wisdom from Rodrigo Prieto, ASC, AMC, Richard Crudo, ASC, Paul Auster,…
Pictured above: COVID Safe Filmmaking.
Photo by Chris Murray, Filmmaker and Photographer, Los Angeles, CA.
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8 Excellent PRO Filmmaking Tips for New Directors


“For me the most important thing is passion. And a director who is not passionate about his project turns me off. That means sometimes I work with directors who will really challenge me and the crew, and we will work long hours, and it’s tough. But I much prefer that, to someone who just wants to get it done in a reasonable amount of time and go home, just get it in the can. So passion is the most important thing.”
~Rodrigo Prieto, ASC, AMC

“The director must be a good communicator. If a person communicates and collaborates well, that’s a great start.”
~Richard Crudo, ASC

“If you love to do it, just keep doing, and do the best work that you possibly can. It’s a very tough business, and it’s filled with very unsavory people. People you really don’t want to have to deal with that much. The work itself is such a joy. The spirit of camaraderie. The crew, the actors, all the technicians, the editors. All of these things are so enjoyable that I guess you just have to do the best work you can. All the time. And maintain the highest level possible.”
~Paul Auster

“Find the questions and ask them—the simple ones, the obvious ones, but especially the ones that scare you.”
~Peter Markham

“Always run a safe set. Don’t ask anyone on the crew to take risks, always use common sense, and always follow the local / state laws and any regulations for the specific location. Make it your business to study the appropriate best practice guidelines and add a safety coordinator to your crew.”
~Mick Hurbis-Cherrier

“Make a lot of movies. Short movies, clips, scenes, anything. Look at the Safdie brothers and how many countless short films – some even just a few seconds long – that they cranked out for years before jumping into a feature. Even if the actors are your roommates or family members, even if it’s shot and edited on your phone, and even (and especially) if it’s not a good film. Keep making them. Develop your eye by doing.”
~Greg Takoudes

“Learn how to write a good script. It all starts on the page – you can’t make a good film from a bad script.”
~Todd Davis

“Trust your vision, be persistent, and never give up.”
~Lynn Hershman-Leeson


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