Description image

'Becoming the Reel Deal' is a Free eBook About Breaking into the Film Industry

12.20.11 @ 2:14PM Tags : , , , ,

Evan Luzi runs a great blog full of valuable camera department information, The Black and Blue. He also wrote a great guest post here about how to find professional crew members for free. Now Evan has released a free 145-page PDF entitled Becoming the Reel Deal, and it may remind you of a certain other free eBook — in a good way. Evan’s advice is focused on the camera department, as you’d expect given his background, but it should be brain candy for anyone looking to break into film:

While I can’t promise you’ll instantly get a job when you finish reading it, if you follow my advice, I can guarantee you will put yourself in a better position for long-term success. This isn’t about getting one gig — it’s about launching a career. That’s why I don’t even try to sell you in this ebook on any magic bullet, undiscovered method, or secret ways to the top — it’s simply tried and true methods that worked for me and others.

Evan just released the book today so I haven’t had time to read it yet (it’s 145 pages!), but go get your free copy and let me know what you think. Note: like my DSLR Cinematography Guide, you will also receive a weekly newsletter after signing up (you can unsubscribe at any time).

Link: Becoming the Reel Deal – The Black and Blue


We’re all here for the same reason: to better ourselves as writers, directors, cinematographers, producers, photographers... whatever our creative pursuit. Criticism is valuable as long as it is constructive, but personal attacks are grounds for deletion; you don't have to agree with us to learn something. We’re all here to help each other, so thank you for adding to the conversation!

Description image 69 COMMENTS

  • If something is truly free, you don’t have to give anything to get it, even an e-mail address (which has value).

    • Hopefully the value in the ebook exceeds or matches the value to which you attribute to your email address. In which case, the exchange is fair.

      • Free and fair are not synonyms.

        • Well, by your definition of free, absolutely nothing is. You’re giving up your time, which has value, to read this “free” article on this “free” website. If you want to argue semantics, that’s fine, but for the most part, this is a free ebook because it requires absolutely no monetary commitment whatsoever.

          • By that train of thought, no websites are free because you have to pay for internet access.

          • It’s not by my definition, it’s by the dictionary’s definition. Monetary compensation alone does not determine if something is free. You should probably know that if you are going to fancy yourself a writer.

            You could simply say that you are offering your e-book as a gift to all new subscribers, and point out that their is no monetary cost to subscribe. That way you are being honest, and giving people the choice of whether they want to provide this information. Exactly, what’s wrong with that?

        • Facepalm.

    • Adam,

      Evan busts his ass to provide real, valuable, informed content from a working professionals P.O.V. For free. All the time. And so far you have provide … nothing except for an overinflated sense of value for your email address. Don’t be such a tool.

      • Well, now you’re getting a professional writer’s P.O.V., and I’m not asking you for anything in return, even an e-mail address. You’re welcome.

        • If you’re a professional writer, I’m a fucking martian.

        • Peter Kelly on 12.20.11 @ 5:56PM

          no we’re getting the opinion of an douche who clearly has nothing better to do with his time and nothing constructive to say, and i’m pretty sure no one wants that. Your Welcome

          • In addition to not knowing the difference between your and you’re, you forgot to capitalize the first letter of your opinion. You’re welcome.

  • Peter Kelly on 12.20.11 @ 5:41PM

    Jesus christ, some people are just unbelievable, a 145 page book that you can get for free (basically). If you dont want it, fine, dont download it.

    Lots of comments on this website have started to become very negative recently

    • Peter — thanks for sharing my sentiments. Anybody who isn’t willing to give up an e-mail address wouldn’t benefit from the ebook anyway. You have to be willing to give up so much more to be successful in the film industry.

  • Thanks a lot.

  • nice, I’ll definitely check it out, mostly out of curiosity (I’m not sure how much of that may apply here in Spain)

    and also, Koo: not a frame of MC has been shot yet, and you’re already a successful internet case study!!

  • I like ‘Adam’ because he is so willing to help everyone out, correct them, and be the better man. He’s a professional writer! I urge everyone to buy one of his books, or read one of his articles. Just go on Amazon; all his stuff is there, just type in ‘Adam’ and you’ll get all his best work. A professional writer gracing this thread with his very online presence, I for one am overjoyed and even a little star struck (i’ve text my best friends, my mother about you being on this thread, I hope you don’t mind ‘Adam’) He didn’t even ask us for his email, a true gentleman.

    ‘Adam’, if you could indulge me…can you point out seven of my intentional grammatical errors on my post? I would be most grateful.

    Many thanks,

    ‘Phillip’ (with Two L’s)

    Non-professional writer.

    • “Non-professional writer.”

      Thank you, for stating the obvious.

      • Post your last name and a link to anything you’ve written so we can discuss your value as a writer. Or continue to hide and provide cowardly, pedantic commentray while demonstarting your obvious insecurity.

        • What is demonstarting? Is that some kind of demonic sex act?

          • oh I get it – you’re a spell-checker. and a coward. nice combo. links plase or you don’t exist.

          • “Oh, I get it. You’re a spell checker and a coward. That’s a nice combination! Please provide links, or you don’t exist.”

            I fixed that for you.

            Too bad my existence does not require your belief in order to continue. After all, anyone can start a cookie cutter blog, slap a downloaded skin on it and pretend to be a big shot. You should know that better than most since that’s what you apparently did.

          • Adam, since this conversation largely revolves around what we started above, I would ask that you please refrain from being disrespectful to the people in this thread. You asked me in the email you sent to be respectful to you, and I will be, so I ask that you do the same for those on this site.

            And I ask those of you commenting against Adam to do the same. Koo would appreciate it if we all just sucked it up and left our ill-intentioned comments at the door.

            Thank you all.

          • No problem, Evan. This will be my last post.

        • pedantic …. LOL, i only know that cuz Family Guy said it in an episode
          lol… he said pedantic… kewl

  • Thanks for the book Evan – I look forward to reading it.

    Adam – I don’t wish to be a stickler for dictionary definitions, but in an earlier post you write, ‘point out that their is no monetary cost’. I believe you mean ‘there’.

    • You are correct! I noticed it right away, but there is no edit button available. I was wondering how long it would take someone to notice. :)

      • Koo and Evan,
        You guys have done a great good, and thank you sincerely for dropping so much effort into your individual sites and books. Amazing, and a real inspiration. A godsend indeed, and a couple of resources I pass around at every opportunity.
        Cheers and keep up the fantastic work!

  • P.S I typed that all out on my iPhone, so upon reviewing my post, there are 7 intentional grammatical errors, and 1 unintentional grammatical errors. There’s an extra point at stake if you can spot the intentional from the unintentional.

    Thanks ‘Adam’

  • There was supposed to be a full stop after ‘Adam’ on my last post, but my iPhone is making changes of its own. That will be all. Thanks ‘Adam’.

  • I already knew about this (I found out about B&B a while ago thanks to the fantastic guest post Evan did a while ago) but with all the work I’ve forgot! Thanks for reminding me Koo and of course to Evan for taking the time and effort to write this ebook.
    Seeing your efforts always cheers me up and gives me renewed confidence to chase my dream, thank you both, honestly.
    All the best to you!

  • Sorry Evan – just got a bit frosted. Movin on.

  • No problem Vince. I appreciate the support. But sometimes it’s best to leave things be in the interest of everyone ya know?

  • Here’s the link to the PDF:

    and if you want to try yourself but are reluctant to give your email try

    • Hey David,

      Is there a reason you posted the link? I would appreciate if you could remove it. Or I will end up just changing the link. Thanks – Evan

      • sorry, didn’t know you didn’t want the book to be downloaded. what do you do with those e-mail adresses anyway? Great book by the way.

        • Thank you Daniel! I’m sorry I called you David at first — I immediately wanted to change it, but couldn’t edit the comment.

          I do want people to read it, but I would prefer not to have direct links floating around otherwise my bandwidth could get out of control and cost me quite a bit of money.

          As for the emails, I use them to send out a newsletter to drive traffic back to my site much like Koo does here at NoFilmSchool. But I do NOT sell my list, distribute the names, or share them with anyone.

  • Hey! I’ve read about half way through, this is some fine work. Thank you for publishing this. I can definitely relate to a lot of the stuff that you write about. The most interesting is just to read how you yourself have confronted the most challenging (and therefore relevant) aspects of beginning to work in this industry. I admire the amount of discipline required to create this guide, and I congratulate you.

  • Oh my God what is going on here? So disappointed in some of the comments lately.

    I was in meetings all day and I come back to find this. Arguments about, semantically, whether taking two seconds to surrender an email address constitutes “free.” Honestly, if this is a point of contention, just refrain from downloading it and move on… I can state from experience that writing an eBook, having it designed, and publishing it for $0.00 is something that takes a LOT of time. Asking for an email address in return (with which anyone can unsubscribe) is small price to pay. The # of folks who will find some worthwhile knowledge in Evan’s eBook far exceed the # of people who will write disparaging comments, so… go get it and judge for yourself.

    Thanks TSM, I agree.

    • Since we’re on the subject of free ebooks in exchange for emails… Koo, how long will you continue advertising your DSLR guide? I’ve read through it a number of times for advice, know it’s helpful for people visiting this site for the first time, but the popup just gets annoying when we visit the site on a new browser, clear the cache on the one we’re using, or visit it on a mobile phone.

      Btw, mobile version of the site soon prease!?!

      • Will Gilbey on 12.21.11 @ 6:19AM

        Thanks Evan. Ebook looks really interesting. Wasn’t previously aware of your blog so it’s great to discover it.

        • Koo, TSM, Will — Thank you for the kind words and support. I agree with Koo — if an email address is too much for you to give up then move on. Or get in touch with me via my contact form and I’ll see what I can do.

      • Mobile version should come with the next version of the site in general… no timeline for that right now but soon I hope! In the new year.

        As for the DSLR guide… I hope that you only see the popup once every blue moon. It’s an important component of this site and I hope it’s a small enough annoyance to not drive anyone away!

  • Will Gilbey on 12.21.11 @ 6:33AM

    Excessive and unpleasant trolling killed Joe Carnahan’s old blog. He just got fed up and packed it in. It was pretty sad ’cause it was interesting. I can’t help but think if people had to use their real names when they posted everyone would keep it civil.

  • Lliam Worthington on 12.21.11 @ 10:01AM


    Moving on.

    Just wanted to say thanks Koo for posting and Evan. Signed up and really looking forward to reading.

    Best WIshes


  • Great resources. I´d pay with all of my three different email addresses for this haha. This will no doubt be invaluable in the coming months and years. I read it from start to finish. Thanks Evan. And always, thanks Koo.
    P.s I beg everyone to keep this blog the best there is. I can see that some people are just playing games. I recommend going and trying to make a film or write a script.

    • Just giving away your email addresses all willy-nilly! Haha jk, I appreciate the sentiment. I am glad to hear you read it front to back and enjoyed it Thomas.

      I agree this blog needs the community to step up now more than ever. I have always found it a great place to come and read posts, but also discuss with others — that’s an important aspect to keep alive here.

  • Evan and Koo,
    Thank you both for providing free resources for people who are looking to build a career in cinematography and filmmaking in general. Every time I come on to this site (which is daily since I can access it from work) and theblackandblue I learn something I didn’t know and I am provided insight into something that I hope will be of major help down the road. Evan I’m sorry you have to have the announcement of your ebook ruined by this stupidity and I will be signing up to your newsletter this evening. Since signing up for the NFS newsletter I’ve gotten quite a few helpful emails that I wouldn’t have gotten regarding courdsourcing and other interesting tid-bits that didn’t make it here.

    I would hate to have to sign-in in order to post on here and other helpful blogs because it’s become the unfortunate poking ground for obnoxious trolls and rabid tech-fanboys. Even if I did though, I wouldn’t hesitate.

    Keep up the good work guys,

  • Michael Soomon on 12.21.11 @ 12:23PM

    Damn you for introducing me to that site! I ended up spending 4 hours on it last night instead of going to sleep. What a wonderful gem. Any other hidden camera websites/blogs that you frequent that I haven’t discovered yet? Maybe a nice new post =p

  • Evan and Koo,
    You guys are a godsend to people trying to break into the film industry and explore newly discovered passions like filmmaking. The amount of crucial information you guys provide is immeasurable, and I would gladly fork over an e-mail address any day of the week for a glimpse into your insight. I look forward to continuing to learn from you guys, and will hopefully one day be considered your peer.

  • Oh, and thank you Evan (and Koo) for bringing both digital books to all of us interested in the film industry, for the socially understood meaning of the word “free”.

    If the conversation between Adam and Evan has indeed continued via email… then after all of this Adam ended up giving Evan his email! Oh sweet irony.

  • Hello!
    Thank you so much for the book. Great job!
    I read it with one breath and it was worth giving you email (+I really appreciate the emails, really useful).

    Thank you again for the book, and maybe I’ll email you with few questions, if it is possible.

  • Albert kyei candour on 07.11.13 @ 5:38AM

    Evans,hi, i am from Ghana and having difficulty with some issues. My question is so simple,how important s formal film education to the contemporary film industry? Waiting to hear your the. I know no one can teach art but film making isn’t just about art,there is the science part, so how do you learn the sience part which is the technical knowhow and film Appreciation?