Do you have a wild imagination and no shame? Are you skilled at cleaning up other people’s mess? Do you secretly want to direct?
If you’re able to answer those questions without a hint of hesitation, then choosing which path you follow in the film industry is about to get much easier — which is to say it’ll get slightly less hard.
The first time you step on a film set, it’s easy to get intimidated by all of the different positions and career possibilities: assistant directors, assistant assistant directors, script supervisors, prop masters, best boys, grips and electrics… the list goes on.
Luckily, someone has made a flowchart that’ll help when it comes time to ask yourself that complex question: “But, what do I want to do?”
Filmsourcing.com, an invite-only site for filmmakers to share resources, has published a “politically incorrect” filmmaker’s career guide flowchart. It asks a series of questions — some serious and some sarcastic — to point you towards the ideal position for you as a crew member. The ranks range from Studio Head to Extra and all the way to Blogger.
And for anyone who has worked in the film industry before, it’s a nice tongue-in-cheek approach to the complexities of the Hollywood movie making machine. Check it out below:
What’s great about this chart is its unflinching wit towards the below-the-line crew positions. It reminds me a lot of camera department jokes I overhear on set. The jokes are funny because they’re ridiculous, but they’re hilarious because there’s some accuracy in them.
For instance, to arrive at camera assisting on the chart, you have to:
- Not appreciate money above all else.
- Fake getting excited about someone else’s idea.
- Consider yourself visually oriented.
- Dislike “polishing the turd.”
- Be “baby-faced and/or female.”
- Have the urge to be told what to do.
- And, finally, hate waiting around doing nothing.
It’s like the job of the camera assistant distilled into a sad list of sarcastic truths!
But in all seriousness, it does manage to capture the essence of many film jobs while also pushing the expectations and assumptions of those same gigs to the extreme (i.e. musical people with arms of steel become “soundies”).