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Director's Notes - Directly from the "From Script to Screen" seminar (check out "Tom's Blog" page for more notes)
Do it right first.
Making a film - any film - will require a lot of patience, a lot of perserverance and a lot of attention to detail. The best advice I can give first time filmmakers is to do it right first. Taking "shortcuts" often results in much more work down the road. For example, hiring or engaging a script supervisor in the short run might increase your total budget a bit right from the start but will save you tons of time as you move from the shooting to the editing process. Try not to cut corners to save a nickel and end up spending many times that nickle in the long run. You'll thank yourself at the end of the process.
The First Shot
The first shot on any film production is very important. It can help set the tone for the rest of the production and you can get things off on the right foot by doing one simple thing - if at all possible, plan for your first shot to be an easy shot. One that you can get in one or two takes (and preferably one). Going from "Action" to "Cut" to "Print. Let's move on" gives your cast and crew a sense of accomplishment right off the bat and it feels good, especially since we all know the rest of the shoot won't likely be so easy. (Monday, June 9, 2014)