Location Management

A Location Manager’s role is to imagine, find and clear a location that is ‘perfect’ for the needs of the script, the director, the shooting unit and the production budget.  A perfect location is one where the director has the ability to shoot at 360 degrees if required, with silence, while also keeping all the facilities the unit is ever likely to need close at hand. This two-week course is aimed at people who are organised, thoughtful, proactive self-starters, capable of working on their own and who want to become skilled in this absolutely vital area of production.

This course will provide a thorough and practical understanding of the role, function and responsibilities of the Location Manager and his/her team – including location finding, planning, legal aspects and working safely, elements of budgeting and communicating clearly with the production office and the on-set crew.

 By the end of this course you will be able to:

  • Articulate the role and responsibilities of the location manager and his/her team
  • Collaborate with directors, cinematographers and art directors to identify appropriate locations
  • Risk assess a location in terms of health and safety considerations and site logistics

Course fee: £1,500
Start date: August 2016


Assistant Director

This two-week course has been designed for those interested in being First, Second or Third Assistant Directors. The role of an Assistant Director involves supporting the Director, liaising with the Production Office, and running the floor so that the entire shoot is efficiently conducted and successfully completed.  This is a demanding role that requires a level head, self-confidence and strong communications skills in order to ensure that the entire crew is able to work efficiently as a team, under demanding conditions and time constraints.

This course is suitable for assistant directors wishing to better understand what is involved in casting the right performers for the right part. This course will be delivered through discussion, illustration and a series of very practical exercises and role-playing scenarios that will be recorded for viewing, feedback and assessment. By the end of the course, participants will be well versed in what is involved in being a member of the assistant director’s department. All that will then remain is to work on productions in order to gain valuable experience.

 By the end of this course you will be able to:

  • Breakdown a script, create a shooting schedule and prepare relevant production paperwork
  • Evaluate risks, identifying hazards and know what to do when accidents occur on set
  • Manage the set with confidence during a shoot

Course fee: £1,500
Start date: August 2016


Movie Magic Scheduling & Budgeting

A schedule is the essential tool that takes a project from script to screen via an actionable plan. The principles and practices of breaking down and scheduling international feature films and television drama will be thoroughly covered during this course. Working individually on a computer fitted with the current version of Movie Magic software, the aim of this very practical two-week course is to provide attendees with a thorough knowledge of the software package, by breaking down and scheduling an entire film. Leading on naturally from the Scheduling part of the course, the Movie Magic budgeting section further addresses the factors that go into making it work financially. Both the principles and practices of budgeting and cost control for international feature films and television drama will be covered. The aim of the course is to provide training on software when scheduling and budgeting. Participants are therefore expected to already have prior experience in production scheduling and budgeting.

 By the end of this course you will be able to:

  • Apply the principles of budgeting and scheduling to a Movie Magic project
  • Set-up, maintain and update a production budget with Movie Magic
  • Construct and edit a production schedule from a script breakdown in Movie Magic

Course fee: £1,500
Start date: August 2016


Video Assist Operators and Assistants

Video playback provides a point of reference for, and a method of monitoring, everything that is rehearsed and shot by the camera crew and recorded by the production sound mixer. Video Assist is used by Directors, (and other relevant crew members including script supervisors), who watch the video monitor during each rehearsal and take. If playback facilities are available, video playback is used to review shots. Core skills covered during this intensive two-week course include knowledge of video, video playback equipment, video and audio cables, practised through a series of hands-on shooting exercises as part of a film crew.   Additionally students on the course will address the increasingly technical aspects of the role such as on-set editing and VFX simulation.

By the end of this course you will be able to:

  • Set-up, monitor and troubleshoot SD and HD signals on-set
  • Apply up-to-date knowledge of digital imaging technology to your role as a video assist
  • Interact with crew and service the needs of various departments during a shoot

Course fee: £1,500
Start date: August 2016


Camera Department Assistant

This three-week course provides a comprehensive introduction to the technical and creative use of 16mm and 35mm film cameras. Designed for those already familiar with digital cinematography, this course introduces participants to the core skills required when working with film. Good, competent and enthusiastic Camera Department trainees, with a broad set of skills are always in demand.  Working as a team, through practical on-set training and observation you will practice clapper loading, focus pulling, camera operating and movement, through a series of filmed exercises, using industry standard equipment. Throughout the course you will also learn about film stock, film processing and the digitisation process, to better appreciate the pros and cons of using film as opposed to digital.

By the end of this course you will be able to:

  • Operate industry standard 16mm and 35mm film cameras
  • Build, load, maintain and safely transport cameras and camera equipment
  • Understand the complexities of shooting on film and the subsequent digitisation process

Course fee: £2,250
Start date: August 2016


Script Supervisors

This two-week course is aimed at those who want to learn and take on the role of an Assistant Script Supervisor/Continuity. The role of the Script Supervisor involves working closely with the Director and camera crew on-set making sure that nothing is missed and ensuring that there is continuity throughout the editing and post-production process. The majority of the time spent during the course will be on practical exercises - preparation and shooting - to give participants as much experience as possible to learn how to become ‘specialised observers’.   Practical exercises will include being the script supervisor on short pre-set scenes to test observational skills. Also covered will be software packages most commonly in use and typical delivery materials for the director and editor.  During the course, participants will be shown examples of work for analysis and discussion.

 By the end of this course you will be able to:

  • Check eyelines, wardrobe, make-up, dialogue and all action shot on-set for continuity
  • Provide detailed paperwork and marked up scripts for editorial department use
  • Record information such as slates, camera and lens details for technical reference

Course fee: £1,500
Start date: August 2016


Storyboarding & Previz Artist

This course provides insight into the role of the storyboard and the more technical role of Previz artist. Over two weeks students will cover the creative skills required to visualise scenes from the script, in order to best express the narrative and address the creative intentions of the Director. Students wishing to take this course are therefore expected to demonstrate strong traditional drawing skills in order to clearly convey the composition and details of individual shots and sequences. Alongside the creative, students will consider technical aspects such as camera choice and lenses as well as the practicalities involved in realising a particular shot or sequence. For more complex sequences, pre-visualisation blends the artistic skills of a storyboard artist with the technical skills of a 3D animator and allows the Director to understand how to successfully execute a sequence of technically challenging shots and how a particular sequence will look once shot and cut together by an editor.

 By the end of this course you will be able to:

  • Visually interpret other people's ideas in a cinematic way
  • Employ pre-visualisation software to demonstrate a complex sequence of shots
  • Recognise the technical, time and budgetary considerations inherent in your work

Course fee: £1,500
Start date: August 2016