Screen actors and screen directors in high school have the opportunity to create a variety of what they want to. High school is a great time to start screenwriting and creating. As a director, you can build short films for festival submissions and dream about your very first full length film. In high school, you have access to people (when not in Covid-19) that will help you build your film. When you enter a high school film program, you may also have access to free sets to film your scenes as well (high school campuses are used all the time).
Being a young filmmaker in 2020 is very different than the access twenty years ago. With so many platforms to share films and with the every day changing technology that makes the ability to shoot films on readily available equipment, it opens doors for young people that in the past would not have had the opportunity to share their stories. There are people that have event been able to create critically acclaimed short films using only their Iphone.
Creativity in the arts world right now has no limits. There is a huge rise of Indie films in the Industry and moguls like Netflix and Amazon are starting to offer Indie films on their channels in their never ending pursuit of more content. Especially in Covid-19, people are devouring films and screen content at a much more rapid pace and the longing for something new and different is giving filmmakers more opportunities.
As a high school filmmaker and film actor, how do you prepare for a launch in Los Angeles?
1. Don't be afraid to use the equipment you have - It is OK to shoot film even if you don't have the latest camera or equipment. Practicing will help you get better at organizing your thoughts and your films.
2. Ask for help - With access to friends and theater departments, don't be afraid to use resources that are around you. Being able to make the connections and friendships with people through directing your films makes you better at communicaton when you are breaking into your career.
3. Watch and study films - Yes, it is completely understandable that you want to build your own name and your own niche. However, if you study films in a variety of genres you will pick up on angles, tricks, and other things that will help you train a better eye for your own films. You never want to stop learning and you never want the way you may films to be outpaced by someone else. Watching what is happening in the film world will keep your films relevant.
4. Don't force yourself into a box - Make plans for your films and create what you feel. Filmmakers break the rules of film all the time to emerge as the new critically acclaimed filmmaker. By creating and not being afraid to be outside of the box, you will be able to learn what works and what doesn't work. When you are starting, don't always play it safe.
5. Train - Whether you are using online resources or entering into a formalized high school film program, you must take the time and the initiative to train yourself. You may have a very firm picture of what you want to create, but you still need training so you can make the firm picture happen.
You will make terrible films. This is part of the learning process. As you get better at what you do and learn your own special techniques, you will get better at what you do. The goal is to learn all that you can, seek for more, and then create every day along the way. That is how greatness can emerge. Hard work comes first.
Encore High School in Southern California offers a free professional filmmaker and film actor program that focuses on helping high school film artsists create films for competitions, screenings, and film festivals. This program is offered in a special Hybrid program where students come on campus a few days each week to work on their films and learn about how to direct and act for the screen and then they complete the bulk of their academic courses online on their home days. Limited transportation is offered throughout the Inland Empire and High Desert. Applications and auditions are currently being scheduled for young filmmakers and film actors wanting to be selected for the program for the fall of 2020. This is an award winning film program that has been creating filmmakers that have been accepted in Columbia, UNLV, UCLA, and many other film and film acting programs.
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Petey the Pirate is the author of this blog for Encore Education Corporation. Part of Encore Education Corporation is Encore High School, a free public arts regional high school in Southern California grades 7 - 12. Encore's arts program is currently taking applications for the fall 2020 enrollment. www.encorehighschool.com. Where arts and academics grow together. WASC Accredtied. Copyright 2020.