December 15, 2016

The Ultimate Holiday Gift Guide for Filmmakers

These holiday gift ideas for filmmakers are perfect for any budget!

It can be tricky trying to find the right gift for that special filmmaker in your life (even if that special filmmaker is you), but this holiday gift guide should give you plenty of ideas regardless of your budget. Below you'll find gifts for all sorts of filmmakers, whether they be directors, cinematographers, or just your regular ol' cinephile!

Below $100

Streaming Subscriptions

Netflix and Hulu aren't the only movie streaming services, you know, and many times they don't offer the range films that cinephiles look for. Sites like Fandor, MUBI, and FilmStruck offer members a wonderfully curated selection of some of the most important and iconic films from every time period and corner of the globe. Some cater to specific tastes, like Shudder for the horror enthusiasts in your life.

  • Fandor: $25 for 3 months, $50 for 6 months, $90 for a full year
  • MUBI: $48.88 for a full year
  • FilmStruck: $6.99/mo, $99/year
  • Shudder: $4.99/mo, $49.99/year
You can subscribe to a year's worth of Fandor for $90.

DVDs/Blu-Rays

It's true, some of us still buy DVDs and Blu-rays to add to our massive (and oh-so-beautiful) movie collections. If you or the person you're buying for is one of these weirdos, you can't go wrong with purchasing a few of their favorite films from the Criterion Collection. Every film distributed by the company is considered historically and cinematically important, so even if you're not sure which one will float their boat, it doesn't really matter. And each DVD is chock full of extras and bonus materials, so you're not just watching a film, but learning about it as well. Each one costs around $20 to $40. You can check out their entire library here, but here are a few great titles they've recently released:

  • Roma (Federico Fellini)
  • The Asphalt Jungle (John Huston)
  • Heart of a Dog (Laurie Anderson)
  • The Squid and the Whale (Noah Baumbach)
  • Breathless (Jean-Luc Godard)
  • Punch-Drunk Love (Paul Thomas Anderson)
  • Boyhood (Richard Linklater)
  • Blood Simple (Joel Coen)
Areaware's Golden Section Finder is only $10!

Tools & Accessories

  • Areaware's Golden Section Finder is a wallet sized tool that lets you find the golden ratio. ($10)
  • GorillaPods are super versatile and allow you to put your camera just about anywhere. ($10-$150)
  • FlashBag is a messenger bag with a reflector built right in. ($83)
  • Yongnuo YN360 Light Wand is a cheaper version of the ever-popular ICE light. ($75)
  • Moment lenses are probably the best smartphone lenses on the market with a metal housing and tele and wide angle options. ($70-$100)
  • Fangs Film Gear offers three great filmmaking accessories all for less than $100: The Viper GoPro Sling Bag for easy action cam storage ($100), Wolf Packs that let you organize your batteries and memory cards ($30-$100), and Panther lens bags that protect and clean your lenses ($20-$65).

$100 - $500

  • Polaroid BrightSaber is a powerful, handheld LED light that looks like a lightsaber. ($165)
  • Manfrotto Befree Live Video Tripod is an affordable tripod from a high-quality manufacturer.  ($240)
  • The Snoppa 3-axis gimbal is perfect for the millions of people who still have a GoPro HERO3. ($260)
  • DJI Osmo Mobile is a handheld 3-axis gimbal for your smartphone. ($299)
  • Can't go wrong with GoPro's latest action cams GoPro HERO5 ($399) and Session. ($299)
  • The Westcott Flex bi-color is a moldable LED mat with adjustable color temperature. ($430)
DJI Osmo Mobile
DJI Osmo Mobile

$500 and Up

  • DJI Osmo is a handheld gimbal that is also a 4K camera. ($569)
  • CAME-Single 3-axis gimbal is great for smaller DSLRs. ($938)
  • Canon M5 is an entry-level mirrorless camera that may very well replace the Rebel line. ($980)
  • DJI Mavic was one of the most highly anticipated drones to come out this year. ($1000)
  • Dutti Dolly is a professional grade skate dolly. ($1054)
  • The new MacBook Pro is pretty sleek with that TouchBar: 13-inch $1500-$2000, $15-inch $2400-$2800.
Macbook Pro with TrackPad

If you have any gift ideas, feel free to share them down in the comments!     

Your Comment

3 Comments

RetiCAM smartphone mount $25
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00FS5L9D4/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o07_s...
All metal, screw tight, holds phones of various sizes with our without your case. I never worry about my phone in this thing. It has a 1/4"x20 tripod hole, and it's flat on the bottom so you can use it to stand your phone on any flat surface.

Bucket Boss Cable Bag $15
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00GK4U24Y/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o04_s...
I use these primarily for power cords, but they also work well for long HDMI cables.

December 15, 2016 at 10:52AM

2
Reply

Link for the "Snoppa 3-axis gimbal" didn't work.

And the Yongnuo YN360 Light Wand is amazing for the price!

December 15, 2016 at 3:38PM, Edited December 15, 3:38PM

17
Reply
Tom Lim
96

Greeeeat ideas

December 18, 2016 at 3:25AM

11
Reply
Guilllermo Castellanos
Videographer/Photographer
208