Film Career Field

Film Careers Outlook

Film CareersThe film industry is greatly ruled by trends. Though filmmakers and industry executives attempt to carefully analyze the success and failures of films, it is nearly impossible to predict which films will capture the public’s imagination and attract them to the theaters. So many different elements play parts in a film’s success. How a film is promoted and distributed, the other films out at the time, and societal attitudes toward the subject matter are just a few of the factors that determine success. Studios are constantly on the lookout for the next big picture but are also anxious to play it safe and follow the formulas of reliable film product. Some industry experts fear that in the future studio executives will rely even more on focus groups and other audience screenings when releasing a picture, thereby limiting the original and creative efforts of the filmmakers. The U.S. Department of Labor projects that the motion picture and video industries will grow 17 percent from 2004 through 2014.

Big-budget films will likely continue to rule the industry. Production companies will hire the most popular big-name actors and directors to draw huge profits. Special effects and animation will continue to create new jobs for those talented with computers. Computer-generated imagery is being used increasingly on all films, not just science-fiction and horror projects; filmmakers use computers to create crowd scenes, detailed backdrops, and other elements common in all films.

Special effects and popular stars don’t guarantee success, however, so film executives will continue to look to the independent filmmakers and festivals for original talent. Also, the unexpected success of such small movies as The Blair Witch Project and You Can Count on Me has proven that movies without stars, special effects, and big budgets can sometimes make more money than many high-profile projects.

The digital revolution also is affecting the film industry. High-definition television (HDTV) now offers the public nearly theater-quality presentation in their own homes. Theaters also are competing with the Internet and personal computers for the public’s recreational dollar. Theaters are working to attract more people to the movies by providing enhanced stereo systems, comfortable seating, restaurants, food delivered to viewers’ seats, and other frills. The digital revolution is also enabling PC owners to photograph, edit, and graphically enhance their own films, and to present them on the Internet. As more people across the country put together their own films, you may see studio executives looking to the Internet for new talent.

Today, movie production is inseparable from the TV and video industries. Companies make films to be released in theaters, but also plan for future video rentals and sales and TV showings. Feature films are more frequently produced specifically for release on TV, both network and cable, and then are produced on video.

Constantly changing TV and video technologies both challenge and feed the film industry. DVD, for example, offers viewers much more than a theater experience with the inclusion of director’s cuts, outtakes, and commentary on the making of the film. Viewers can skip to their favorite parts of a movie, watch it in a different language, or choose from various formats. HDTV offers such high quality pictures that some people say it is better than seeing a movie in a theater. Although HDTV proponents predict that the new TVs will have a serious effect on box office receipts, the technology is still cost-prohibitive for most Americans. As it becomes more affordable, there may be a change in the habits of moviegoers similar to what happened in the 1950s with the introduction of black-and-white TV, but it is likely that the television and film industries will continue to challenge each other and enjoy a competitive coexistence.

Careers in Film:

  • Actors
  • Advertising Account Executives
  • Art Directors
  • Audio Recording Engineers
  • Camera Operators
  • Cartoonists and Animators
  • Cinematographers and Directors of Photography
  • Composers and Arrangers
  • Costume Designers
  • Dancers and Choreographers
  • Film and Television Directors
  • Film and Television Editors
  • Film and Television Extras
  • Fund-Raisers
  • Graphic Designers
  • Lighting Technicians
  • Marketing Research Analysts
  • Media Planners and Buyers
  • Music Conductors and Directors
  • Music Producers
  • Musicians
  • Photographers
  • Producers
  • Production Assistants
  • Real-Time Captioners
  • Screenwriters
  • Singers
  • Special Effects Technicians
  • Stage Production Workers
  • Stunt Performers
  • Writer Careers

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