Director's Notes - Directly from the "From Script to Screen" seminar (check out "Tom's Blog" page for more notes)
First, do it right.
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.
No Garbage Bags
It's always nice when an actor gets booked on a shoot and is asked to provide sizes or to arrive in advance of the actual shoot for a costume fitting. However, many shoots do not supply wardrobe for the actors and it is incumbent upon the actors to bring their own wardrobe.
If you are ever asked to do this, here are a couple of tips...
1) Make sure your clothes are clean, fresh and pressed.
2) Bring your clothing options in a garment bag or suitcase that will not wrinkle your clothes. (I have actually had actors bring their wardrobe in a garbage bag - believe it or not. That's not professional and it's definitely NOT a good idea).
3) Bring plenty of options and when I say "plenty", I don't mean 2 pairs of pants, two shirts or blouses and only the shoes you wear to the set. Of course, your wardrobe will be dependent on the role you will be playing and you will likely get some guidance from someone at the company hiring you. Still, within the parameters provided to you by the company, bring PLENTY of options - 6 or 7 shirts in a variety of colors and styles, an equal number of pants, skirts or dresses, several belt and shoe options, sweaters, some tee-shirts if appropriate, sport coats, blazers or suit coats - again with a nice variety of colors and styles. You will end up bringing a lot of clothing but when I am the director, I absolutely LOVE the actor who brings me a ton of options that I can play with, especially since I can almost guarantee that at least one actor on the set is going to arrive with not much more than the shirt on his back.