Chapter 7 Hiring Your Crew
The right crew is like the right employees to run a business or the right crew that can fly a plane. They are essential to your film’s success. You have to be open to negotiation in order to find the best crew for your film. Here are the first crucial steps you will have to take to hire your film crew. It’s a bit more complicated than just searching for “camera crew for hire” on Google.
7.1 Main Film Crew Positions
Film production requires many skills. To achieve the film’s goal, many departments must work in concert to produce high-quality content on budget and time. A film crew may include 10 to 100 people. Each member brings their own skills to the table, and they all work together to ensure that every project is a success.
Although I won’t list all crew members that can be present on set, here are some examples. Let’s begin with the top-ups or department heads on set. Two of the most important roles in a film set are the cinematographer and the art director. They are responsible for how each scene looks and feels. The cinematographer takes care of each scene’s lighting and camera equipment, while the art director oversees the film’s artistic elements. Both work closely together with the film director and camera crew to ensure the highest quality shots.
The sound is managed by the sound and audio designers. The job of the sound designer is to modify and mix original sound recordings in order to make them cleaner and more polished. The sound designer creates the soundtrack for the film. Although the sound designer’s role is more in post-production, it is still vital as poor sound quality can make your film appear low budget.
The camera department is the front line of your film. It includes many roles: from the main cameraman and his assistant to the boom microphone operators and grips. The cameramen maintain sharp image quality and are responsible for all camera equipment. While the director thinks of the artistry of the shots, grips sort out how they are going to move the cameras to make that happen. You should consider hiring the camera department as one of your top priorities.
Let’s now look at how to find talented film crew members.
7.2 Run Digital Advertising
If you have the budget, running advertisements is a great way to find crew members, especially if you operate in major film-making areas like New York or Los Angeles. Running ads has one major drawback: the high cost. Low-budget filmmakers and new filmmakers are often unable to afford the advertising costs required for popular magazines or newspapers.
If you have the funds, you can run ads to get some applicants.
It is a common belief that money makes it easier to make movies. However, you can still be successful in your search for film crew members by using free online tools.
7.3 Post on Film Production Jobs Websites
These directories will help you find most of the jobs in their film production database: from a good set designer to a director’s assistant, etc.
You will see a lot of websites listing filming crew members for hire. Two websites that I prefer to use for finding crew members are ProductionHub (https://www.productionhub.com) and BackStage (https://www.backstage.com). Both sites are easy to navigate and free. These sites have large user bases and are great for finding crew members quickly and in high quantities. It’s possible to search by radius and zip code, too. This is definitely better than Googling “videographer near me” or “filmmaker in Paris”.
7.4 Join Clubs, Workshops, and Social Groups
Local film clubs and groups are another smart way to find crew members for your film. There are many film and entertainment organizations that exist online and in person. You can choose how you wish to meet and find them.
Google is a great place to search for clubs and groups. If you are unable to find a club in your area, search for “film production classes near me”. While you learn something, you’ll also meet potential crew members and other filmmakers. Although some classes are not intended for beginners, the instructor may have experience and be able to put you in contact with local filmmakers.
Facebook is a great place to start looking for clubs. You can search Facebook for film organizations in your area and find a lot of them. You can also search Google for “film club near me” to find a number of clubs that might be interested in your project. Also, LinkedIn and Meetup are great options.
7.5 Networking is Important
Simply put, networking is about making friends and meeting new people. You must present yourself as interesting, fun, smart, and easy-going to network. This will make you a desirable person to associate with and be around.
Although networking is a great way to find crew members it is even more crucial when it comes down to actually securing them, especially if your budget is low. It’s easier to network if you are a film student or just a student. You can make connections with fellow students and get them interested and involved in your projects.
You will need to make connections with people who aren’t students. You can meet other members of your film community at club events and on forums. It’ll be much easier to find reliable and talented film crew members if you build and maintain these relationships. It’s particularly important to build relationships with your crew when you are working on a tight budget. Sometimes, the crew won’t get paid much. It will be easier to negotiate if you know the people you are working with and build a good rapport with them.
Film crews are the foundation of any production. It is extremely important that you hire the best crew possible.