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-   -   "Filmmakers"? (https://www.dvinfo.net/forum/techniques-independent-production/33340-filmmakers.html)

Keith Loh October 13th, 2004 01:13 PM

Chris, I didn't see anything that Keith F. wrote that said you necessarily had to make money at it, only that you had to have something in the can. To use the other analogies, the painter has to finish a work, the poet has to finish the last line, the novelist has to finish the epilogue. Whether or not they have an audience is a factor in their income, not in their process. I've written three screenplays, two of which have been read by industry people. I haven't made a dime on any of them. But by the act of writing and completing them, I feel I'm a step above someone with just the intention of doing so. Therefore, I would consider myself a screenwriter. I think the same would be for 'filmmaker'.

Ken Tanaka October 13th, 2004 01:27 PM

I understand the self-actualizing value of declaration.

The genesis of my question was the observation (as one of the registrars here) that so many members register their Occupation as "Filmmaker". Nearly as many also register "Director", "DP", or "Producer". Since the definition of "occupation" is, "An activity that serves as one's regular source of livelihood; a vocation." the intent of this optional field was to record peoples' vocations, not their aspirations or avocations.

I am not scolding anyone for misuse of the field. Rather, I am truly interested to discover how many of our members feed, clothe and house themselves from income principally derived as filmmakers (or producers, directors, directors of photography, et.al.).

The amalgamation of the computer and the video camera during the past 8-10 years has driven a stampede of computer-oriented young people into the world of videography, much the same as digital photography has induced this same group into photography. So my real suspicion is that the "occupation" of many, maybe most, of our members is actually in the I.T. arena (ex: programmers, Web site developers, software analysts, et.al.). I also suspect that we have a sizable population of students here.

Again, I am not criticizing or scolding anyone. Please don't feel the need to be defensive in any way. I am just curious and thought this might make for an interesting topic.

K. Forman October 13th, 2004 01:37 PM

Christopher- Being an artist, is an act of creation, whether it is music, film, sculpture, or literature. It doesn't matter what medium, as long as you FINISH it, and display it. After all, isn't that why you do it? To show others what you see? Making money is a byproduct of selling a successful creation.

I have one feature length script that made it into preproduction before stalling. I have another story I'm working on, and two more on the back-back burners. Either way, since I have not finished a film, I am not a film maker... yet.

And, while we're at it, what constitutes a film? Is it strictly film, as in 35mm, or does video and animation count? Does it have to be feature length?

Keith Loh October 13th, 2004 02:37 PM

Keith, Emily Dickinson wrote poetry. But only a handful of it was published until after she died. She wasn't a poet when she produced it but she was only after others recognized it?

Yi Fong Yu October 13th, 2004 02:50 PM

to reiterate, doesn't film mean the actual physical "film negative"? i always thought filmmaker is misnomer. even people who are in hollywood making movies. are they chemically creating the actual physical film like kodak? i mean if you speak on a very technical basis, kodak is a "filmmaker". that's why i like to use other terms cause even filmmaker the meta-physical/symbolic term itself is changing.

keith loh, i think keith forman was sayin that emily dickinson finished the poems herself. she is a poet regardless of what society and even herself thought. at least she finished a poem (or several). what keith is asking are those (like me) who say they are making movies... but have not completed a script, shot a tape or "completed" anything. are they still one? hence i tend to call myself a 'hack' =). i should change my title to that =D.

Ken Tanaka October 13th, 2004 03:28 PM

Yi Fong,
Not to break your train of thought, but are your replying that your "occupation" is or is not that of filmmaker/director/producer/etc.?

Richard Alvarez October 13th, 2004 03:36 PM

Wow, existential discussions... metaphysical realities... self actuallized motivations...

It's a forum for "PHILOSOPHERS"!

Richard Alvarez

Disk Jockey
Stunt Coordinator
Fencing Master
Professional Jouster
Sailplane Pilot
Scuba Diver

And.... yes, I've made at least a little bit of money at all of those...Some a LOT of money at.

Generally, when people ask, I simply say "I've worked professionally in the media all my life." My philosphy has always been, "The more you CAN do, the more you WILL do". There are those who decry being a jack-of-all-trades, but I am one who believes specialization is for insects. (Thanks RH)

Oh, and perhaps the two most important occupations... husband and father.

Ken Tanaka October 13th, 2004 03:54 PM

Your closets must be an absolute riot, Richard! <g>

Jeff Donald October 13th, 2004 04:02 PM

You know, Richard, that some philosophers make almost as much as some poets. But I'm sure both of them make more than the filmmakers I meet.

Richard Alvarez October 13th, 2004 06:57 PM


I almost forgot my closets! Add "Costumer/Armorer" to the list. Hey, I've made some nice change renting out armor/horses/tack/swords... you name it. Heck, I can still tack and armor six horses and men, and I've sold most of my stuff.

I keep it hanging around for this great little script I want to shoot pretty soon... "KNIGHTSBRIDGE". A script I wrote to shoot in one location... a medieval knight guarding a bridge. Soon as my XL2 arrives, I'm going to start looking for a location up here in NorCal.

Hmmmm, never made a dime as a philosopher, though I was "Class Poet" in High School.... and a cheerleader.

Imran Zaidi October 13th, 2004 08:43 PM

Funny thing for me - I decided I wanted to be a writer in college. But at the same time I really liked technology and didn't want to starve. So fast forward years later and now I make web applications for a living. Strangely enough for me, the writing desire is what brought me to filmmaking, not the technology. For me, technology was a lovely bonus that made it possible for me to make my writing ideas into a visual reality.

Yi Fong Yu October 13th, 2004 09:51 PM

ken if you go futher up this thread i've already said that moviemaking is a hobby and not my primary source of income.

<<<-- Originally posted by Ken Tanaka : Yi Fong,
Not to break your train of thought, but are your replying that your "occupation" is or is not that of filmmaker/director/producer/etc.? -->>>

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