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Directing the Short Film

    We're not here to provide you a manual for directing your film. Directing a film presents so many challenges - many of them impossible to anticipate, and most of them falling outside of the scope of this Web site.

    Still, the person who writes a short film tends to be the one who directs it. Herein lies one of the advantages of making a short film: you can retain control over the direction, editing, and production of the film. In other words, if you choose to shoot a short film you will be able to see your vision through from beginning to end.

    But this control also means that you will never stop writing and revising your screenplay. You will write as you draft, naturally, but you will also write as you shoot the film, making changes according to an evolving sense of story, or according to limitations in location, casting, budget, and so on. You will continue to write as you edit, sometimes restructuring a film dramatically. Our point is that your screenplay will not stay the same as you've written it on the page - no matter how perfect that draft might seem when you've finished it.

    Accordingly, we focus here on some aspects of the directing (and later the editing) process that often "revise" a film. Some might object to the word "revise," arguing that a director "interprets" a script when he makes a film. But we'll stick to our choice of words. We believe that a director's job involves a series of choices that make significant changes in the way that the story is understood. Among these choices are: casting your actors, finding and creating your locations, and blocking your shots.



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