Film director


A film director, or filmmaker, is a person who directs the making of a film.

A film director visualizes the script, controlling a film's artistic and dramatic aspects, while guiding the technical crew and actors in the fulfillment of their vision.

In some cases, film directors do not have absolute artistic control. The director can also be selected by the producer. The producer can in this case have veto power over everything from the script itself to the final cut of the film, often in anywhere from slight to extreme opposition to the director's vision.

When directing episodes for a television show, a director's responsibilities are somewhat diminished, as the visual look and feel of the series is already established, usually by the person billed as the show's creator or executive producer. Those directors who choose or are chosen to work in TV traditionally have had to accept that they will not be as lauded, or as well-paid, as their big-screen counterparts.



A film director is responsible for overseeing every creative aspect of a film.

They develop a vision for a film, decide how it should look, what tone it should have, and what an audience should gain from the cinematic experience. He/she is in short the storyteller. Film directors are responsible for approving every camera angle, lens effect, lighting, and set design occasionally even taking part in the hiring of key crew members. They coordinate the actors moves, determine camera angles, and may be involved in the writing, financing, and editing of a film.

The director works closely with the cast and crew to shape the film and may often take suggestions on pertinent issues. Some like to conduct rigorous rehearsals in preproduction while others do so before each scene. In either case this process is essential as it tells the director as well as other key members of the crew (Director of Photography, Stunt Choreographer, Hair Stylist etc) how the actors are going to play the scene, which enables them to make any necessary adjustments. Directors often use storyboards to illustrate and a directors viewfinder to set up camera angles.

The Director also plays a key role in post-production. The Director oversees the editing of the scenes with the editor to ensure that the emotions of the scene and the close ups, mid shots and wide shots appropriately reflect which character is driving the scene. The Director also inputs into the (colour) grading of the final images adding warmth or frigidity to the composition of the scenes to reflect the emotional subtext of the character or environment. The Director also participates in the sound mix and musical composition of the film.


Methods of film directing

Directors have different methods of filming. Some styles include:

Outline a general plotline and let the actors improvise dialogue. Directors who employ this style are John Cassavetes, Christopher Guest, Spike Lee, Wim Wenders, Jean-Luc Godard, Miklˇs Jancsˇ, Judd Apatow and occasionally Robert Altman and Federico Fellini.

Control every aspect, and demand that the actors and crew follow instructions precisely. Such asSteven Spielberg, James Cameron, George Lucas, Francis Ford Coppola, Stanley Kubrick, David Fincher and Alfred Hitchcock

Write their own scripts (such as Woody Allen, Ingmar Bergman, Stanley Kubrick,

Charles Chaplin, Billy Wilder, David Lynch, the Coen Brothers, Pedro Almodˇvar, Kevin Smith, Quentin Tarantino, Todd Field, Paul Thomas Anderson, Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Satyajit Ray, Oliver Stone, Terrence Malick, John Singleton, Spike Lee, Akira Kurosawa, Hayao Miyazaki, M. Night Shyamalan, Billy Bob Thornton or Robert Rodriguez).

Collaborate on screenplays with long-standing writing partners (such as David Fincher, Wes Anderson and Owen Wilson/Noah Baumbach, Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg, Martin Scorsese and Nicholas Pileggi/Paul Schrader/Jay Cocks, Yasujiro Ozu and K˘go Noda, Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh, or Robert Zemeckis and Bob Gale, Krzysztof Kieslowski/Krzysztof Piesiewicz, Frank Capra/Robert Riskin, Michelangelo Antonioni/Tonino Guerra) .

Be the cinematographer and/or editor (such as Stanley Kubrick, Steven Soderbergh, Josef von Sternberg, David Lean, Don Coscarelli, Robert Rodriguez, Gaspar Noe, David Fincher, Shinya Tsukamoto, and the Coen Brothers).

Appear in their films (such as Orson Welles, Subhash Ghai, Mel Brooks, Mel Gibson, Martin Scorsese, Peter Jackson, John Waters, John Carpenter, Spike Lee, Eli Roth, Kevin Costner, Michael Bay, Clint Eastwood, Woody Allen, Quentin Tarantino, Charlie Chaplin, Sam Raimi, Roman Polanski, Billy Bob Thornton, Sylvester Stallone, M. Night Shyamalan, Harold Ramis, John Woo, Kevin Smith and Edward D. Wood, Jr.; Alfred Hitchcock made memorable cameo appearances in his films.

Compose a music score for their films (such as Charlie Chaplin, Clint Eastwood, John Carpenter, Satyajit Ray and Robert Rodriguez).

Directors work closely with film producers, who are responsible for both artistic and non-artistic elements of the film, such as, script approval, financing, casting notes, contract negotiation and marketing. Some directors will take on some of the responsibilities of the producer for their films.

Directors like Orson Welles are famously known for writing, directing and producing their films while the early silent film director Alice Guy BlachÚ not only produced her own pictures, but actually created her own highly successful studio.


Professional organizations

In the United States, directors usually belong to the Directors Guild of America. The Canadian equivalent is the Directors Guild of Canada. In the UK, directors usually belong to Directors Guild of Great Britain. A new director might earn as little as $20,000 a year, while the most successful can earn over $500,000 or even millions per film in some cases.



Dictionary Definition

"Seeing the directorĺs point of view"

"Dream Job: Film Director"


See also

Federation of European Film Directors

Auteur theory

List of directors

Alan Smithee

English Film Directors

List of Directorial Debuts


External links

Federation of European Film Directors

Filmmakers - Free Filmmakers Forum

Directors Guild of America

Directors Guild of Canada

Directors Guild of Great Britain

A comprehensive collection of interviews with a century's worth of European film directors

Films101 The best directors picked by critics and filmmakers

Example of Amateur Film Created by Basememnt Filmz