“One of the best things that happened to me was that I didn’t go to film school. I used to go down to the USC library and read everything. I’d Xerox stuff. I made my own reference library of doctoral dissertations on optical printing and all that.” James Cameron
Cameron had a great love for the Arts and Science, so taught himself about production design and special effects as well, while he left college to become what he was born for.
This is what he recalls:
“The most important thing is to pick up a camera and make a film. Even if you don’t have money, get your friends, even if it is the worst piece of crap, it still will have your name saying 'Directed by' … and for everything after that you are a director.”
Well, he is absolutely right, don’t you think? What are you waiting for? Banish the fear, the excuses, and the laziness! Register your team here, grab your cam, and shoot a 48FILM Project movie short. You can do it again and again and again. Grow in confidence and build up your show reel. Start writing history - your history - as a great moviemaker!
I know people who talk about it for months and years, and still haven’t had the balls to get a camera and go for it. Take a tip from successful directors who know more than you do.
This acclaimed filmmaker says the same thing:
“Trying to make a film yourself with no money is the best film school you can do.” Quentin Tarantino
Tarantino himself dropped out of acting school and started paying serious attention to movies. Another thing that helped him a lot was to be working for a video club store back in 1980, so when people asked him if he joined a film school he was telling them instead of going to film school he went to the movies.
He said the following:
“When you have tunnel vision, when you have very limited interests, you know, you pick up a lot. I wasn’t interested in school. I wasn’t interested in sports. I was only interested in movies!”
First of all, let’s make it clear. I’m not against higher education, but not everything has to be taught in classrooms. Film is a passion. And no school can teach you passion for films.
Here's what Christopher Nolan says:
“I’ve studied English literature and pursued an academic qualification.
I paid for my first feature myself and made it with friends. Used to noodle around with cameras but I didn’t go to film school.” Christopher Nolan
Films were always an important part of Christopher Nolan’s life. He started this way, then Zeitgeist Films picked his movie for distribution at a film festival and that was Nolan’s beginning in Hollywood.
What does Nolan say he learnt as a self-taught filmmaker?
“A very organic approach of understanding all the various bits of craft. From sound recording, to editing or music. And absolutely everything I did was simply because I was passionate and wanted to try stuff. You’re never going to learn something as profoundly as when it’s purely out of curiosity.”
From a camera that he received at the age of 13, grew his passion for photography and filmmaking. His self-taught start in Hollywood was back in 1969.
This is Stanley Kubrick's story:
“The best thing that young filmmakers can do is to get a camera and make a movie of any kind” Stanley Kubrick
He began teaching himself photography and the very basics of filmmaking. He first made two documentaries, Day Of The Fight and The Flying Padre. He did all the work on those films. And as he said before he was…
“… A cameraman, a director, editor, assistant editor, sound effects man – you name it, I did it! It was an invaluable experience.”
His movies will last forever. He created a whole film methodology and everyone later would talk about Kubrick’s films.
This unconventional movie name started his career as a cartoonist and animator, and stepped behind the camera slowly, building confidence and experience.
Terry Gilliam has a reputation for wacky and original themes:
“Film school is for fools. Get your camera and live and learn how to make films. I watched a lot of movies, I didn’t go to film school and the greatest education I had is actually making films. So make a movie.” Terry Gilliam
As an Executive Producer who has seen many attempts at successful film production, I suggest the same as all those great filmmakers said before me with so much confidence.
Get your camera, get your friends and start making films!
Film schools are always nice starting places to learn the basics of filmmaking and probably you will meet like-minded new friends. But is the tuition worth the cost? In my humble opinion, if you have to choose between a film school or buying a good camera, I would suggest the second. Invest your money in gear, and invest your time in the field that interests you the most. Start by making films now!
Start by creating a short movie in just 48 hours. Practice your talent, again and again. Winners will get $48,000 to shoot a feature film. What are you waiting for… ? All you need is an Internet connection and your friends. Register your team from anywhere you are, and shoot your movie whenever you feel ready. This is your 'film freedom'. Choose your genre and just push the button…'Start my competition'. You will choose when your 48 hours countdown begins. Shoot your short and be among the 48FILM Project winning teams to screen your movie at the DIRECTORS GUILD OF AMERICA, in Hollywood next year!