Directors Tell the Story: Master the Craft of Television and Film Directing

$29.95 $20.96

Hands-on and practical, this book lets you not only read about the secrets of directors, it also includes exercises using original scripted material…


Bethany Rooney, is the director of GREY’S ANATOMY, DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES, BROTHERS & SISTERS, & PRIVATE PRACTICE. She has directed Denzel Washington, Hilary Swank, George Clooney, & Angela Bassett. and Mary Lou Belli, is the Emmy Award winning director of MONK, THE GAME, GIRLFRIENDS, 3WAY, LIVING WITH FRAN, & CHARLES IN CHARGE.

Market: Beginner-Intermediate level filmmakers, directors, producers, and enthusiasts – anyone trying to learn the craft of film and tv directing.

Key Features:

  • Highly experienced Hollywood directors share insider information about what it really takes to be a director, giving the advice that the readers covet
  • Covers everything a director needs to know: the creative vision, how to translate script into a visual story, establishing the look and feel, selecting and leading a crew, coaching actors, keeping a complex operation on time and on budget, overseeing the edit, and troubleshooting through the whole shoot
  • Hands-on exercises and interviews with A-list professionals help the reader really see how it’s done

Move over, movies: the freshest storytelling today is on television, where the multi-episodic format is used for rich character development and innovative story arcs. Directors Tell the Story offers rare insight and advice straight from two A-list television directors whose credits include Monk, Grey’s Anatomy, Desperate Housewives, Weeds, and more. They direct dramas and comedies using the same process that Steven Spielberg (or any other movie director uses)-just with less money and time.

Learn what it takes to become a director: master the technical aspects, appreciate aesthetic qualities, and practice leadership, all while exuding that “X? factor that distinguishes the excellent director from the merely good one. Covering everything from prep, the shoot, and post, the authors emphasize how aspiring directors can develop a creative vision-because without it, they are just technicians.

Hands-on and practical, this book lets you not only read about the secrets of directors, it also includes exercises using original scripted material. The companion web site includes scenes from the authors’ own TV shows, along with the scripts, shot lists, and other materials that made the scenes possible.

“.Bethany Rooney and Mary Lou Belli’s Directors Tell the Story sets out to fill the void; as directors of series, including Grey’s Anatomy, Desperate Housewives and Monk, the authors have hundreds of hours of experience between them and, thus, have first-hand knowledge of what it takes to mount television productions on tight schedules and modest budgets.”–

“This is a precise and smart book about directing in general and directing television specifically. It is filled with common sense information that becomes second nature to a skilled, experienced director and can be so easily overlooked by a newcomer or even a working director who ought to think of another field of endeavor all together.” -Sally Field

“Finally– Actual, Working Hollywood Directors Share their ‘Inner-Door’ Secrets of the Craft. These two ladies have worked on some of the most critically-acclaimed current shows, and still made time to write this ‘Can’t-Miss’ book! Call it-‘The ‘Hollywood Rules’ for Up & Coming Directors’!!? -Dave A. Anselmi: Director, Producer, and Instructor,

“[Directors Tell the Story] has been referred to as “film school in 320 pages,” offers a different approach than most other “directing” textbooks by offering how-to’s from working professional directors. The authors designed a step-by-step format, breaking down the directing essentials to emphasize how aspiring directors can develop a creative vision:- Prep: Break-down, Casting, Production Design, Blocking, Scouting, etc; Shoot: Directing the Actors, Below the Line, Running the Set; Post: Working with Editors & Post Supervisors; Being a Director: The Demands of the Job, & Getting Started.”–

“Trust me, this is a book that should be required reading for anyone who has aspirations in pursuing a career as a director. On the other hand, for readers as myself that have no intention of becoming directors, Directors Tell The Story: Master The Craft of Television and Film Directing will no doubt force you to watch television film from a much different perspective and appreciate the intense collaboration that takes place between the director and everyone else that plays a role in its production.”–


Section One: Prep
Chapter 1 – Breaking Down the Script for Story
Chapter 2 – Breaking Down the Script for Character
Chapter 3 – Casting
Chapter 4 – Production Design
Chapter 5 – Organizing the Shoot with the First Assistant Director
Chapter 6 – Sharing the Vision
Chapter 7 – Blocking and Shot Listing, Part One
Chapter 8 – Blocking and Shot Listing, Part Two
Chapter 9 – Scouting Locations
Section One Review

Section Two: Shoot
Chapter 10 – Directing the Actor
Chapter 11 – Below the Line
Chapter 12 – All the Other Stuff
Chapter 13 – Running the Set
Section Two Review

Section Three: Post
Chapter 14 – Working with the Editor
Chapter 15 – Working With the Post Supervisor
Section Three Review

Section Four: Being a Director
Chapter 16 – Being a Director
Chapter 17 – The Demands of the Job
Chapter 18 – Getting Started
Section Four Review



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