We often get kids reaching out to us to how they can get started in filmmaking. Based on our experience, this is what we think:
Not all kids suit being on a film set.
To be a member of crew (or cast), you have to be able to concentrate for long periods of time. You have to be mature and disciplined, even when you’re young. So if you (or your child) cannot focus, sometimes for hours at a time, they are probably not ready for a film set.
Film sets are busy, time-pressured environments and not all kids can hold it together for the duration of a film shoot.
Depending on how young you are, you might find it hard to get training. Most filmmaking programs focus on teenagers and older. This is because equipment is expensive and may be complicated to use.
This shouldn’t stop younger people from practicing though because nothing beats experience. Many kids have easy access to cameras on their phones and iPads, so get shooting!
If you’re child (even younger than teens) who has experience on a film set (i.e. you’ve worked a number of times on a film set, which has lasted for several hours at a time), it’s still worth approaching training schools, even if you’re underage. We have had 11 year old kids attend teen programs.
In Melbourne, we always recommend Open Channel, which is the industry-backed film training organisation. All over the world, though, there are industry-backed training organisations so our recommendation would be to head to whatever industry-body is available in your location first. If you’re not sure what’s available, contact your local government film bodies. In Australia, this would be Screen Australia or Film Victoria, for example.
More specifically, if you are interested in cinematography, join the Australian Cinematographers Society as a Cinekid (15 years and under). Nothing – and we really, really mean nothing – is better than the ACS for would-be cinematographers.
Luckily for would-be filmmakers, Far Out Films produced “Creative Kids” so here is the link to the video, which shows kids how to make a career of filmmaking.
If you’re looking for a quick and easy (and free) booklet, which we created for kids based on our experience, check out: