Every Sunday morning, we send out our weekly filmmaking newsletter. We're reasonably sure it's the best in the world. Maybe even the best in the known universe.
But we'll let you be the judge of that. Below you'll find the issue we sent out last week. It's not any better or more extravagant than what has gone out every single Sunday morning since January.
The idea behind the newsletter — much like the idea behind this website — is to pull together the most useful filmmaking stories we can find in order to help you become the filmmaker you want to be.
For that reason, the stories we share aren't ever about the fanciest new cameras or what's happening amongst the Hollywood elite. Instead, we focus on sharing stories and tutorials and short films that teach us about the craft and philosophy of great filmmaking.
If that sounds like something you'd enjoy, scroll down through last week's newsletter and give it a glance. If you dig it, we hope you'll sign up to receive the new issue coming up on Sunday.
Greetings filmmaking friends!
After taking last week off (it was an excellent vacation consisting of road trips and reading and filmmaking), I’m back at it this week feeling rejuvenated. And I’ve got a whole lot of fresh content to share.
In fact, I’ve got something extra special for you today. In addition to all of the good stuff usually packed into the newsletter, we’re going to lead things off with brand new original article that hasn’t appeared on the site yet. You’re the very first to see it.
So let’s dive right in.
(Though I included the full article in the newsletter, I'm just going to leave the image and link to it here for the sake of brevity.)
Filmmaker's Process Articles You May Have Missed
In this article, I try to pinpoint what exactly sets great filmmakers apart from good ones. It has nothing to do with filling theater seats or getting YouTube views, nor is it about how good you are with a camera.
“Great filmmakers aren’t satisfied to do the same things as everybody else just because “that’s the way they’ve always been done.” They take risks and push boundaries. They cultivate a unique artistic voice and perspective, and they have the courage to actually infuse their work with that voice.”
In this interview with Guido Coppis, a 17 year-old director from the Netherlands, he talks about how he made his heartbreaking short film Iron Flows Through My Veins. Not only is the film well made (no matter the age of the filmmakers), but it features some bold and thoughtful aesthetic choices, which Guido explains well in the interview.
Blast from the Past: An Article from the Archive
In one of our favorite Filmmaker Stories of all time, Ryan LaBee shares his personal journey into the world of filmmaking, and how he’s overcome the mental barriers that many of us face when it comes to doing creative work.
“We may not be able to change where we live. We may not be able to raise a million dollars for our first feature. We may not be able to afford all the fancy gear, but we can still become better filmmakers. What can change right now? What can you do right this minute to become better?”
Curated Stories from Around the Web
15 Things Wrong With Your Short Film [Short of the Week]
The good folks at Short of the Week watch so many films that the common mistakes that might otherwise go unnoticed, become giant red flags. Some of these mistakes are small and easily remedied. Others are deeply ingrained in more profound creative components such as narrative, structure, and theme. But all of them are avoidable if you know what to look for.
The Emotional Glue That Binds Us to Story [Script Magazine]
In this article, screenwriter and story consultant Tim Long dives into what makes a story feel compelling and universal. It has nothing to with plot or structure or any of those story mechanics. Instead, it’s all about character and emotion, or what long simply refers to as Heart.
When you start looking for philosophy embedded in film, you start to find it everywhere. Here are a few great examples of films tackle life’s most complex questions in thoughtful, entertaining ways.
Darker Shades of Grey: The Night Of DP Igor Martinovic [Filmmaker Magazine]
For those of you who haven’t seen HBO’s latest miniseries The Night Of yet, you really should. Not only is it one of the most realistic and disheartening looks at the American criminal justice system that’s ever been shown in a narrative work, but the cinematography is absolutely phenomenal. It’s so dark and textured, with a lot of fascinating compositional choices. This in depth interview with Igor Martinovic (one of the DPs who worked on the show) is a must read for all cinematography nerds.
In this episode of Ben Consoli’s podcast Go Creative Show, the two editors of this summer’s smash hit show Stranger Things break down some of the techniques they each brought to the show. It’s a great listen.
How to Get Your Indie Film Seen [Lights Film School]
Perhaps the only thing harder than making a high quality independent film is getting in front of people and getting those people to actually care. In this in depth interview with the team at Quiver (an aggregator that helps filmmakers distribute to online platforms like Netflix and such), you get an inside look at what it takes to get your films seen.
Short Film Spotlight
Points Of Origin dir. Anya Leta (20 min.)
Of all the short films I’ve shared this year, Points of Origin is my favorite so far. It tackles an immensely complex and emotionally charged subject, but it does so in the most compelling, human way possible. For those of you wondering why so many people emphasize the importance of writing strong, nuanced characters, this film should provide the perfect case study.
Also, in the coming weeks, we’ll be featuring an original article featuring both the director and producer of Points Of Origin, and they’re going to share how they managed to put this film together.
Weekly Filmmaking Inspiration
Thanks for taking the time to read this week’s edition of Filmmaker's Process Weekly. I hope you enjoyed it and found something useful in it that will propel your filmmaking forward.
Now go forth, make films that matter, and I’ll see you next week.
If you enjoyed this sample, be sure to sign up to receive the Filmmaker's Process Newsletter in your inbox every Sunday morning. We put this much care and attention to detail into it every single week, all in hopes that it will be useful to you in your own filmmaking journey.