January 5, 2016 at 9:48AM


Stop Obsessing Over Film Gear & Start Making Movies!

OK, I wanted to start off the new year on the right foot. Over the course of my career I’ve seen so many filmmakers obsess over film gear, to a paralyzing end. They focused so much on gear that they never make actual films.

No one is saying you shouldn’t keep up to date on the latest film gear. You need gear, without it you can’t make films but cameras, lenses, drones, and grip equipment are just tools.

Do you think Chris Nolan, Martin Scorsese, or Quentin Tarantino obsessed about film gear? No. They learned to tell stories first and then grabbed the tools available to them to tell those stories. Sure now they play with all the latest toys but I can guarantee you Quentin Tarantino worked on The Hateful Eight script first before he thought of shooting it on 70mm.

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Hard to argue with.

But gear has become affordable enough to bring film-making into 'hobbyist' territory. And the aim of a hobby is just to have fun, learn, try things out, dream, etc. Many people asking about cameras on forums probably aren't planning to make a feature.

Also, increasingly, we're trying to combine different roles into one. I'm sure the filmmakers you mentioned had plenty of gear-obsessed people around them, helping them realise their vision. But today's gear-nut is expected to be writing and directing too!

January 11, 2016 at 12:53PM, Edited January 11, 12:54PM


I agree. This obsession with gear is strange. Story should come first. The gear is used to tell that story, nothing more.

It's strange. Now that good quality gear is available to those on a modest budget, a lot of shorts appear in which the filmmakers can create very complex and professional looking shots and effects, but have no idea how to tell a story or no idea how to use effective mise en scene or proper blocking.

January 12, 2016 at 8:27AM

English Cinephile

Stoping listening to filmmakers who need hits online or need to make money off you to pay their bills, its just as bad as gear obsessing. You want advice, then write a sincere letter or email to 50 filmmakers you want to work with, one will agree to help you. Then you will get authentic, practical, and useful advice, not some one who is telling you what you want to hear. You'll learn filmmaking way way faster offline than online.

January 13, 2016 at 6:48AM, Edited January 13, 6:48AM

Indie Guy

Stop echoing articles and presenting it as something new on the platform that already posted it :-p

From 8 months ago with the same title:


January 13, 2016 at 8:00AM, Edited January 13, 8:01AM

Director, DOP, Writer, Editor, Producer

yes,one gets caught up in the gear craze and start buying gear on ebay and amazon,,but then have no idea how to write scripts and get diolog down and tell a story that is commercial and interesting to a audience,people get into the gear craze fever,,,buy the new gear,,you see this on ebay where they sell gear that they purchased after the fever of having the gear wares off,,then its sold on ebay,,and someone else with the gear fever buys it,,,,but no film is made,,,only test films and youtube videos about the gear,,this is what the gear is for,,,youtube videos,,,gear test videos,,,,its amazing how wastefull americans are...they have no idea what the rest of the world is going through,,they just buy things they dont need,,consumer sheeple,,,,this will come to a end,,and the dollar will fail and your time as the number one country will be over and hard times will be upon the sheeple,,,,

January 13, 2016 at 11:53AM, Edited January 13, 11:53AM

steven potter
director,writer,sound tech.

Film is a industrial revolution medium. By pure nature the medium is tech driven. Ever piece of equipment our industry works with was invented to address a issue. With these fixes we are left with a quality of that tool. It is like items in a bethesda game, different qualities and characteristics. As filmmakers it is our job to study all of these tools and all their aspects in order to tell a story. Our gear is our toys. It's about how you play with your toys that matters not the cost.

January 13, 2016 at 8:08PM

Jesse Cardoza
Director of Photography, Camera Assistant, Gaffer

Cry me a river

January 14, 2016 at 10:10AM

Josef Lorenzo

Argumentum ad nauseam. How about this, stop comparing yourself to Scorsese and Tarantino and start paying attention to their craft. They succeed by treating all aspects of the endeavor as important, not by spouting useless platitudes.

January 14, 2016 at 11:49AM


this is the perspective in L.A. from D.P.S to a Producer...and from Colorists..

from Colorists"you save a lot of money with film because it's good right out of the can while a digital job can take months to correct.."

from D.P.S in general what they spoke about...THEY ALL WANT TO WORK WITH FILM (EVEN SUPER 16MM)
For artistic reasons and the beauty of the image...
they also like their vision protected ..and film does that for them..(not so many people looking at monitors..post etc..)

from the Producers...(again in general what they said) Film is cheaper for them then renting a high end digital camera (most film cameras are super cheap)...and not having to spend time with colorists...(which I know because that's where I was working)
when you look at a can of film you are also looking at your archival material and coloring...that saves a lot $$$

whatever you do in your production test first and weigh the costs and the art..and then choose..

January 15, 2016 at 10:58AM

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graduate film student

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