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How To Find Work On Major Studio Films

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In this article, we show how to find film crew work on major studio films. How major productions hire their staff is different from that of independent films. This article will look at the hiring process, how to find the right contacts and apply to high budget film jobs.

How Do I Find Work On A Netflix Feature Film?

This is the puzzle a lot of new filmmakers are struggling with. Online it is easy to find low budget jobs but work on high budget film sets is never advertised. Furthermore, it seems that the filmmakers who have made it onto major studio films won’t let you in on their secret to finding work.

The answer is as simple as it takes time. Time to be trusted in the industry and time to find those right contacts. However, there is a little more to finding work when you break it down.

Making Those Right Contacts

Major film studio work is rarely advertised. Typically the people doing the hiring already have someone in mind to fill every position. It is mainly the Producer who does the hiring on a film set. They hire all of the key staff such as the Screenwriter, Director and Production Designer.

Typically the Director and Producer already have people in mind to fill their Head Of Department positions. These HOD’s however, will often hire their own staff. For example, the Director Of Photography will supply their own camera team.

major studio films

If you desire an assistant role within a specific film department you will need to meet a lot of HOD’s. This way when people are hiring their assistants you can be considered for the role. Work on a lot of low budgets and various types of film productions to meet as many people in your department as possible.

This won’t take as long as you might think. For example, a couple of years working on low budgets and you will meet hundreds of filmmakers. Do a good job and you will start to build up a reputation and begin to get recommended for bigger budget work.

I worked on five low budget feature films before being hired on a major budget film within my job role.

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Developing The Right Talent

Feature film crew work is very different from corporate and commercial work. That is why you need to gain experience on sets similar to the type of productions you aim to work on. If you only have work experience with a company making corporate films, you will not be hired for feature film work no matter how talented you might be. The discipline, etiquette and workload are far different.

Being hired on major studio feature films also means having a focused job role. For example, you might make a living as a videographer but this job role does not exist on feature film sets. You will need to focus on a specific film crew job role and become well known for working within that role.

Other Ways To Find Work

You might have already specialised your job role and not be getting hired on major studio films. Here are some ideas on why this might be.

Firstly make sure that you have enough experience within your focused job role. Make sure you are working on productions similar to the type of films you want to work on (such as finding feature film or drama experience).

Secondly, make sure that you are making contacts with a variety of people in the industry and not just working with the same group of people.

major film studio

Crew Databases

Another way to find work is through a film crew database. Some countries and regions will have film councils with crew databases that Producers use to hire from.

In the UK we have Creative England when you have enough experience in your job role you can add your details on here. There are also film crew agencies when you are professional enough within a job role you can have an agent represent you.

You might also be reading this wanting to know how to get hired within a major production job role such as Film Director. Often people in these major roles have spent years making industry contacts and developing trust. Often the Producer will have someone in mind to hire for this role who has already proven their ability to the job well.

Wrapping Up – Finding Work On Major Studio Films

Finding work with major film studios might be a puzzle. Stay optimistic and with enough experience, you will meet the right people to welcome you on board. The best part is that once you have worked on one major film set it will be much easier to get hired on another.

Amy Clarke
Amy Clarke
I blog about Careers in the Film Industry. Former Script Supervisor.
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