» Posts Tagged ‘career’

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Right now you’re probably thinking to yourself, “That’s a pretty bold title for an article, Mr. Hardy. There couldn’t possibly be one single thing that’s SO important that it could make or break your career as a filmmaker.” Well No Film Schoolers, there is, in fact, one thing that is more important than all of the skills that you’ve put together over the years, the gear that you own, or even your sparkling production resume. It’s such an important facet of your success, yet we rarely, if ever, think or talk about it. And now that the suspense has been adequately built, the single most valuable thing that people can do for building a career in the filmmaking industry is… More »

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Jason HortonHere at No Film School we’re massive fans of the folks at Film Courage, and we share their fantastic videos frequently. Recently, our fearless leader, Ryan Koo, sat down with them to discuss various filmmaking tools and how he grew this site into what it is today. This time we’ve got comedian Jason Horton, who bills himself as the “world’s only white male comedian.” In the video, Horton talks about a subject that many of us have on our minds these days: how to quit your day job and make a living doing what you love. Check out what he had to say below. More »

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Failure SuccessIt’s hard to follow your dreams. For every thousand kids that want to be an astronaut, there are only a very few who actually end up in outer space. This is true for any endeavor, especially indie film, where the ratio of effort to reward can seem daunting (i.e., it might take years of working away with no reward to finally get your film made, or your script sold.) It’s all about making choices, and over at Chris Jones’ film blog he has a great post on making choices related to your indie film career, as well as an excellent and inspiring video. Click below to learn how to make the choices that will lead to a fulfilling life and career. More »

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Being an artist of any kind is difficult, and it’s even more difficult if you dedicate yourself fully to that art. Most people don’t choose to be musicians, or painters, or filmmakers because they want to make a lot of money. There are plenty of professions that will yield a better salary than being a filmmaker, and most of us will never reach that 1% in the entertainment industry who never have to worry where their next job is going to come from. I think as any kind of artist, it’s important to keep asking yourself if you’re doing what you want to be doing in life. Take a few minutes to watch the video below that forces you to ask yourself, “What do I desire?” More »

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All creative individuals have their own ways of working and specific quirks about their methods. I always think it’s fascinating to watch professionals at the top of any creative or artistic field, and see what parallels can be drawn between those fields and filmmaking. Patton Oswalt happens to be one of those rare few who has had major success in a number of different areas, including comedy, acting, and screenwriting, and even if you don’t recognize his face, you just might recognize his voice as Remy from Ratatouille. In the episode below of Thrash Lab’s Rituals, get an in-depth look at Patton Oswalt’s creative process. More »

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UPDATE: In response to some of the (heated! opinionated!) questions and comments on this post, we did a long video Q&A as well.

I wrote recently about finishing the screenplay for my feature MANCHILD (for now… ), but it’s been a while since I talked about what else is going on in the trenches of first-time feature filmmaking. The title of the post gives it away: we’re making a short. Why are we doing this? And why do I think this strategy makes a lot of sense for other first-time feature directors? Because there are millions of people with a screenplay, all trying to figure out how to get from here (words on a page) to there (actual finished movie). If your goal seems impossibly far off, that’s when it’s time to bite off a smaller chunk and show what you’re capable of. More »

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This is not new. It is so old, in fact, that it has been on the internet for over two months, so feel free to skip this if you’ve already heard it. However, I’ve found myself sharing Patton Oswalt’s recent keynote speech on comedy with more than one filmmaker/actor/creative over the past few months when they tell me about trying to make it via “traditional” routes. So here it is, because if you replace the term “comedian” with “filmmaker” it applies equally well. More »

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A global pandemic breaks out just in time for Halloween… and election season. More »

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This year’s Vimeo Festival + Awards screened a bevy of award-winning awesome videos (many of which we featured here on NFS), and also featured a number of workshops, panels, and the like. I showed up on one panel as a sort-of surprise guest, joining Brian Newman (who recently guest-posted here) to talk about “the art of getting paid.” Whether it’s an art or not, in the independent film world getting paid at all can sometimes feel like a triumph, and so we talk about many different approaches, including web series, merchandising, Kickstarter, this web site, and more. The full panel is below. More »

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The VFX industry has exploded over the past few decades — going from a very specialized, somewhat obscure, corner of the filmmaking industry to one of its most important high-profile sectors.  It seems like every movie and tv show these days requires VFX of some kind.  Are you one of those folks looking to bring fantastic never before seen screen characters/worlds/sequences to life?  Well, here’s some advice from the folks behind some of the great pioneering VFX in recent film history — from Star Wars to Terminator 2: Judgment Day to Jurassic Park and AvatarDennis Muren, Phil Tippett and John Rosengrant have watched the industry transform more than once, and here’s what they advise anyone looking to break into visual effects today: More »

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Following in the footsteps of our recent post on advice for recent grads pursuing creative careers, I found this rare audio interview with Stanley Kubrick complementary.  Kubrick, as you may or may not know, did not go to college, and was largely self-taught when it came to filmmaking.  Over the course of several conversations with writer Jeremy Bernstein of the New Yorker, Kubrick outlines his own beginnings, and how certain experiences, such as teaching himself photography and honing general problem-solving skills, proved crucial to his development as a filmmaker: More »

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It’s been a while since I’ve had an update on my feature Man Child, as I haven’t had any major news to share. Last week, however, the Tribeca Film Institute announced their 2012 All Access grantees, and I’m incredibly honored to be among them. In addition to sharing my own good news, I’d also like to raise awareness about a pair of Tribeca programs currently open for applications: the Tribeca New Media Fund and the Tribeca Film Fellow program. First, here are the details on All Access, and then I’ll share details on the other programs, as well as more about the current status of Man Child. More »

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Here’s what I learned from running a $125,000 Kickstarter campaign for my feature film Man-child, which became the most funded project in Kickstarter’s narrative film category — for just one day, it turns out. More »

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Big news about Man-child today, thanks to you! Three things:

FIRST: with only ten days left in my campaign to make my first feature film, I just discovered that if we’re successful, we will make history. I didn’t start out with this goal in mind, but as I was exploring Kickstarter I found that if Man-child is funded it will become the single most funded project to be listed in Kickstarter’s narrative film category. Wow.

SECOND: we are officially most of the way there. Most of the way to making history, that is! 51% and counting. However, the campaign is ending next Friday. As you know by now, Kickstarter projects are all-or-nothing, so if we don’t make history we’ll make… nothing. Now is a great time to get on board!

THIRD: last week’s Twitter outreach campaign was extremely effective. Thank you to everyone who helped reach the basketball community — it was a classic case of “strength in numbers,” as I never could’ve done it alone. In fact, we now have a success story worthy of an official press release (after the jump). What happened? Well, we were able to reach none other than one of the greatest basketball coaches of all time: More »

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It’s been a very slow Labor Day weekend for the Man-child campaign — dang federal holidays! So while I’m working on a video update specifically for NoFilmSchool readers, in the meantime here’s a brand-new video interview I did with TV Writer Podcast presented by Script Magazine. In the interview, we talk about film school, crowdfunding, DSLRs, and DIY filmmaking (please forgive the aggrandizing bio at the beginning): More »

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Here it is, at long last: my first feature, Man-child. I’ve spent the past year writing it and many more years dreaming about it. I’ve just launched an ambitious Kickstarter campaign to try to turn the dream into reality, and I’m hoping and praying that, if you’ve found NoFilmSchool to be a valuable resource, you’ll consider helping me. I hope to share everything I learn during the production of the film here on this site, going beyond DSLRs and technology, and getting into more content about financing, directing, producing, the film festival circuit, distribution… absolutely everything I learn along the way. But of course, to do that I have to make the movie first, and I need your help to do so! More »

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I heard recently from an NYC-based actor friend who is undergoing an internal debate common to his profession. Should he move to LA to pursue an acting career (uprooting himself in hopes of getting cast in a major TV show or film), or stay where he is and do what he can outside of Hollywood? As someone who runs a web site focused on DIY/independent careers, I thought I’d write him an open letter explaining why I think 21st-century performing artists should forget about putting their careers in the hands of others, and instead take the reins — and responsibility — themselves. Here is that letter: More »

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Ryan Koo is now Koo

07.21.10 @ 4:40PM Tags : , , , , ,

UPDATE: I’ve ended the one name experiment and gone back to using, as far as credits go, both first and last name (Ryan Koo) like the rest of humanity. I wasn’t 100% comfortable with the one-name thing, though plenty of people still call me “Koo” and always will. The post below is my original experiment with self-branding. More »

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It hasn’t been easy writing a blog about filmmaking without having a project of my own to show since my 2007 fly-by-night production of The West Side. The main reason for this? I tried to get something made in the studio system. 200 pages of screenplay and twenty-something meetings later, I arrived at the conclusion that I should’ve stuck to the DIY route. However, there’s another reason you haven’t seen a new project from me in a while: I haven’t had access to a camera, to actors, or to much of anything, because I’ve been living out of a suitcase for a year. Why did I decide to do this — and why do I recommend others do the same? More »

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Can a blog like NoFilmSchool be self-sustaining? As a blogger you can make money by being a contributor to a huge tech or political blog, wherein you’re one of many staff writers churning out content every day — which I’ve done — but can you turn a profit by writing about what’s important to you, on your own site, in your own way? In my recent manifesto I talked about blog revenue being one (small) slice of the self-sustaining pie, and on this site’s about page I wrote, “a big part of figuring out how to be independently creative — and by this I mean, being able to work on your own creations, for yourself, without having a day job — is figuring out how to derive value from the content you create.” Here, then, are the traffic and revenue stats from NoFilmSchool for the just-concluded month of April: More »