For people who are prepared to work hard and build up their skills, careers in the film industry are not the impossible prospect they might seem. It may take a fair measure of luck, as well as talent, to succeed as an actor or director, but there are many other skilled roles available, including:
Most movies need locations, and although the bulk of the work in the US industry is in Hollywood, there are opportunities all over the country. The job of a location scout involves driving around, identifying areas of interest and finding out who owns them or has the power to grant permission for their use. Indoor as well as outdoor locations are sourced this way and scouts need strong networking skills to find out about hidden ones. Some scouts work for agencies, building up databases of useful places, while others are commissioned by specific movie projects.
As well as foreign language subtitling, more and more films offer subtitles for the hard of hearing. This means there are increasing opportunities for freelancers and agency workers in this role. Where translation is concerned, people are usually employed to translate from English into their native languages, and they’re required to be fluent in both. Subtitling for those with a hearing problem requires specific training because other important sounds, as well as words, need to be noted and described.
A career in stunt work is one of the most exciting ways to connect with the industry, but it’s physically very demanding. It requires years of intensive training and repeated certification, as well as a good understanding of the risks involved in different stunts, the relevant safety legislation, and how to minimize risk. It helps to develop a specialism. Proficient stunt performers enjoy challenging and varied work that often involves travel.
The success of movies at the box office and as home entertainment depends on them having some secrets to reveal, so this is an industry in which cybersecurity is particularly important. It’s also the first line of defense against piracy. Maryville’s online cybersecurity degree program is the kind of course needed to train for this work, which requires a lot of technical knowledge and good problem solving abilities. Opportunities are expanding so job security is good.
Once they’re ready for release, movies need distribution companies to make sure theaters book them and people hear about the home entertainment release. The work of a distributor is centered on communications and negotiation, with a lot of admin. Personable individuals who are good at engaging with people and have strong IT skills can go far. Most people start out working for small independent distributors or intern for big ones.
With careers as diverse as this available, there’s a place in the movie industry for anyone who really puts their mind to it. Movie production is all about teamwork and depends on bringing people with many different skill sets together, so there are always opportunities for good team players.