September 19, 2014 at 5:13PM


Reading Lists - What books have helped or inspired you?

Here are some books that helped me make my first feature (and a couple that will hopefully help guide me into making it as successful as possible).

The Reel Truth - Reed Harris
Moviemaker's Master Class - Laurent Tirard
- Wonderful book!
From Reel to Deal - Dov S-S Simens
Finding the Core of Your Story - Jordan Smith
- How to write a logline. I wish I read this before I began, not during.
Any and all of the Screenwriting Blue Books - William C. Martell
- these books are filled with useful info, tips and inspiration.
The Plot Whisperer - Martha Elderson
Complete Filmmaker's Guide to Festivals - Rona Edwards and Monika Skerbelis
The Complete Independent Movie Marketing Handbook - Mark Steven Bosko
The Now Habit - Neil Fiore
- If you have a problem with procrastination in any way, get this book.
- I would have never gotten close to completing my film without it.
The Score: - Michael Schelle
- very similar to how Moviemaker's Master Class is written, but with composers.

Hopefully I got all of the author's names correct, but I did phone it in.

(This site was a big plus as well. Thanks fella's;)

Please share your lists below. (I'd like to see some more exhaustive lists on specific aspects of filmmaking, as I can always use some good inspiration.)


Oh man, we need an edit button! The text didn't react quite as I thought it would... Mainly, I wish I had spaced my -'s a little more... I hope it's still legible.

September 19, 2014 at 5:17PM

Mark Chaney

Making Movies - Sidney Lumet
The Five C's of Cinematography - Joseph Mascelli
Screenplay - Syd Field
Poetics - Aristotle
Which Lie Did I Tell? - William Goldman
Down & Dirty Pictures AND Easy Riders, Raging Bulls - Peter Biskind
Rebel Without a Crew - Robert Rodriguez
On Directing Film - David Mamet
Film Directing Shot by Shot - Steven Katz
4 Hour Work Week - Tim Ferris (nothing about filmmaking but some great business and scheduling tips and insights)

October 21, 2014 at 3:20PM

John Morse
Producer + Director

I'd like to add a personal favorite of mine.

Becoming the Reel Deal - Evan Luzi

October 22, 2014 at 11:09AM

Christopher Brazil
Audio/Video Tech

Hitchcock: A Definitive Study of Alfred Hitchcock - Francois Truffaut (A book length interview of Hitchcock by Truffaut. Very detailed, very interesting.)

Everything is Cinema: The Working Life of Jean-Luc Godard - Richard Brody (Exhaustive biography, film by film, period by period, of Godard. Insights into his working methods.)

Notes on Cinematography - Robert Bresson (Invaluable philosophy of cinema)

Sculpting in Time - Andrei Tarkovsky (In depth, really explores his view of what cinema can be, trying to create a distinct cinematic language that moves away from literature.)

March 11, 2015 at 2:11AM, Edited March 11, 2:11AM

English Cinephile

Horizons West- Jim Kitses (Western genre movies and what some of the best practitioners focused on)

Romantic Comedy in Hollywood- James Harvey (Good big book that surveys a bunch of the best years of hollywood and why so many people went to the movies. Screwball comedies to Douglas Sirk dark melodramas with an aching heart. Author is just good and perceptive and pointing out what makes a lot of movies so much fun.)

Dark City- Eddie Muller (Fun big enough introduction to Film Noir, written by somebody who obviously loves it in a contagious way. Just like the two books above really.)

March 12, 2015 at 10:27PM

Daniel Thoen

Very good list! Thank you!
I have my own list of books that have changed my life!
Read the Book Called "BeoWulf" its actually an epic poem by the Vikings from 10,000 bc, I loved it and as I read it, it reminded me so much of you and your life morals. You can check brief summary of beowulf -

Here is some excerpts; They're really long you don't have to read them all, but I know they would inspire you.

"Then into the midst of this gala feast of gallant knights and fearsome fighting men came Hrodhgar's queen: the beautiful and gracious Wealtheow, daughter of some conquered chieftain in some alien land, now the beloved queen of the Scyldings. She salutes first her noble lord and dear husband, then the Danish men-at-arms, and lastly the visitors to her hall, the Geat warriors who have come to help defend her adopted country. Lifting a goblet into his hands, she gives thanks to God for the arrival of Beowulf, son of Ecgtheow, the new champion of Heorot. "

"Then Hrodhgar took leave of his new champion and the other valiant fighting men feasting in his hall, and retired to the inner chambers of his palace. As he passed out of the mead-hall, he turned and looked back upon the stone walls and vaulted roof. He remembered the glory days when this house was new and bright and clean. The stone shone white in the sunlight, and the air was alway filled with aroma of fruit and flowers. And the golden-roofed mead-hall was always filled the harpers' songs and the laughter of his men-at-arms. This hall, famous throughout the world, was once a tribute to the victories of his youth. Now, as it lay in ill-repair, it served a constant reminder of the waning of the vigor of youth, and the waxing impotence of old-age. The old king sighed, slowly turned, and shuffled off to his chambers in the inner recesses of the palace. "

: "Hrodhgar then gave unto the heroic Beowulf from the treasure-stores of Heorot: a golden battle standard to go before him, a helmet and mailshirt that gleamed like silver in the sun, a sword of the hardest steel that would cleave the armor of any enemy, and horses - eight fiery stallions to bear his champions into battle - along with the finest leather saddles. And finally gifts of gold and silver were given to Beowulf and all the Geat warriors who had accompanied him on this errand. Gold coins and rings, silver arm-bands and medallions, goblets and daggers and pagan idols were bestowed upon Hygelac's men-at-arms"

May 25, 2018 at 1:21AM


Your Comment