“Are Short Films Different?: A Director’s Take”

Sharan Gupta-

Sharan Gupta  is the Vice President for Video Marketing at Beyond Codes Inc. a prominent digital marketing and lead generation solutions firm based in Southern California. Sharan is responsible for developing the company’s video marketing platform and establishing it as a leader in the field. Sharan is a graduate of the renowned New York Film Academy (NYFA). The view expressed are his own.


Who is the Director?

The aesthetic and dramatic elements of a movie are in the direction of the director, who also visualizes the script and directs the cast and crew to realize that vision. The director plays a vital role in picking the cast members, production design and all the creative parts of filming.

The movie director directs the actors and crew and develops the overall concept that allows the movie to be realized or acknowledged in the end. The ability to arbitrate conflicts between opposing creative visions and stick to a budget is a must for directors.

There are several methods to become a director of films. Some movie directors began their careers as actors, producers, producers, cinematographers, or film editors. Some also attend film schools. Every director has a different strategy for their career path and development of the film. Some have a broad narrative and allow the performers to improvise lines, while others have complete control and insist that the cast and staff adhere to all rules. Some movie directors also pen their own screenplays or work on them with seasoned writing partners. Other filmmakers may edit, star in, or compose their movies’ music scores and soundtracks.

Skills that every filmmaker needs


The job of a director is to envision how to turn a screenplay into a finished film and then carry out this idea. They manage the creative and practical aspects of filmmaking to achieve this. This means coordinating with the actors and setting up the film crew in a way that will help them realize their vision for the movie. This calls for both group leadership abilities and the capacity to stay focused, even in the hectic, fast-paced setting of a movie set. Additionally, having a creative eye is required to frame shots and provide accurate feedback to the cast and crew, therefore great communication skills are a need.

In post-production, directors are equally crucial. The director communicates their general vision for the movie through “dailies” sent to the editor while the movie is still in production, enabling the editor to put together an editor’s cut. The director and editor collaborate to edit the footage into the director’s cut during post-production. The “final cut privilege” refers to the fact that established filmmakers have the last say in which edit of the movie is released. Without the director’s consent, the company may require additional cuts for other filmmakers.


In addition to directing for related media like television and advertisements, some film directors began their careers as screenwriters, film editors, producers, performers, or film reviewers. The Coen brothers’ initial director of photography, Barry Sonnenfeld, and Wally Pfister, who worked on Christopher Nolan’s three Batman movies, both made their directorial debuts with Transcendence (2014). Despite the misnomer, becoming an assistant director now involves a whole other career path. Assistant directors are normally not aspiring directors, however, there are some nations, like India, where this is the case.


Many movie directors have received bachelor’s degrees in film or cinema from film schools. The fundamental techniques utilized in filmmaking are typically studied by cinema students. For instance, planning, shot lists and storyboards, blocking, dialogue with experienced actors, crew communication, and script reading are all included in this. Certain film schools have sound stages and post-production tools. Students also receive instruction on the types of professional relationships that arise during film production, in addition to basic technical and logistical abilities. Up to five years of study can be required to complete a comprehensive degree program. Short films are typically produced by aspiring directors while they are in school.

Some film schools hold onto the works created by their pupils. By working in television, many directors were able to successfully prepare for directing feature films.

Skills That Every Director Needs

Technical Expertise and Trends

– or at the very least, an excellent working understanding of the latest filming technology and software.

One of the significant ways to ensure that you’re always wanted is to make yourself invaluable. That implies having the technical expertise necessary to do the task correctly and effectively as a filmmaker. It’s vital to at least understand what makes a good shot and how to get one, or framing, staging, lighting, and the proper gear to utilize. You do not need to be an expert in every aspect of filmmaking. You’ll have no trouble learning how to do anything as long as you know what you should be doing, especially if you’re learning by doing it!

A filmmaker needs to have a working knowledge of every aspect of the filmmaking process, including camera work, lighting, sound, special effects, design, post-production techniques, and more. Even though it would be practically impossible to learn everything on your own, you can still prepare yourself for all of the technical facets of filmmaking with the correct tools and enough hands-on experience.

Adaptability, Originality and Creativity

Making movies requires originality and creativity, and you can’t claim to be a creative filmmaker if you haven’t taken the time to learn about the variety of filmmaking specialties. You must possess the creative skill to be able to envision the creation of a film if you want to work in the film industry, whether you want to be a director, producer, post-production coordinator, or in another capacity. No matter what you desire to specialize in as a filmmaker, you should be ready to contribute to the development of a film in any capacity that is required since filmmaking demands vision from everyone engaged in the process; everyone feeds into and off of the ideas for a film; that involves taking jobs that might not be ideal for you but call for you to apply your ideas to add to the overall success of a movie. When you’re a filmmaker, whether you’re just getting started or running the show, you can always find a way to contribute if you’re both creative and adaptable.

Vision of Storytelling

There is no way to produce a film, or at least a good film, without the abilities required for both visual and textual narrative, even though filmmakers can physically spend hours, months, and even years crafting films. However, you may develop the abilities necessary to comprehend, plan, draft, assess, and analyze stories, both written scripts and wordless visual storytelling, as not everyone can be a creative genius or can write the finest scripts and make the best storyboards. These are skills that can be learned and practiced to make a good film. As a filmmaker, you must comprehend the tale you’re attempting to depict even if you won’t be involved in the drafting of the script or the artistic creation of the visuals in order to produce a film in which the story is effectively conveyed throughout every stage of production. You cannot succeed as a cinematographer, producer, director, or in any other capacity if you aren’t always aware of how the choices you make impact the plot, and vice versa.

Decisive Leadership

Whatever role you play in the film industry, you must be able to take responsibility for every duty you are assigned, as well as be able to support the work of others by being aware of how your work influences and is influenced by that of those around you. This implies that you are functioning as an effective leader whenever necessary – and in any way necessary – whether you are in charge of production, directing, operating behind the cameras, or doing anything else.

Making a movie is not an easy task; you will face challenges that you are unsure of how to handle, decisions that will complicate your vision, or impediments that will force you to stop and think before taking a step. When this occurs, you’ll need to be able to solve problems quickly and decisively to keep production moving forward and meet deadlines. Even a director with creative vision and technical proficiency might struggle to navigate the challenges of filmmaking if they lack the ability to lead decisively.


In every field and every job, communication is essential. However, effective communication skills are crucial while working on a set with a large crew and cast members as a filmmaker. No amount of experience or filmmaking know-how will be able to help you bring a vision to life and successfully express a tale if you lack the capacity to communicate.

You’ll collaborate with filmmakers, directors, producers, cinematographers, screenwriters, editors, and others. Each of these professionals needs to have a thorough understanding of their job responsibilities, specific directives, the artistic vision of the movie, how their work will affect that of other teams, and more. Make sure you’re always speaking clearly, whether you’re outlining your artistic vision or your part in the production of a film, to ensure that everyone is on the same page both on and off set.

Learn The Basics Of Cinema And Film

To succeed as a filmmaker, one must become knowledgeable in cinema theory and history. You’ll be more ready to create your own masterpieces if you are conversant with the terminology, tools, and techniques frequently employed in this field of employment. Understanding the precise function that directors perform at each step of production is important. The following are the stages and duties:

Watch the films as a Critique

Consider aspects like the mise-en-scène, which literally translates as “placing on stage,” which can be the music, side stage, background or the conversations rather than just the most prominent ones.

Important to develop interpersonal skills

The abilities and personality qualities that directors should have include communication, self-motivation, attention, and problem-solving. Because directors interact with a range of individuals and their job sometimes resembles management, communication and interpersonal skills are essential.


Read everything that you find. For you to find a story, the inspiration can be drawn from anywhere. From news, books, films or people around you. The world is an open book, you just have to look!

Write Screenplays to develop storytelling skills

Put your screenwriting abilities to use as often as you can after learning the craft. When you’ve finished writing a script, ask people to read it and comment on your writing to evaluate your work.

Gain Industry Experience and Network

Even currently, well-known directors had to start someplace. Many ambitious filmmakers begin their careers as production assistants. A hierarchy also exists inside the directing division, with the director at the top. It’s crucial for you to network by working on the film sets or going to industry events since you often have more opportunities when you know more people.

Make Your Own Short Films

You must begin experimenting with ideas and start making short films. Take the help of family, friends or whoever is there to help you. MAKE YOUR SHORT FILMS! Release them on open platforms and social media. Demonstrate your talent and work wherever and when the opportunity presents itself.

Enter Your Work Into Film Festivals

If you create a short film that you’re happy with, submit it to film festivals to establish your name and earn recognition in the industry. Make yourself and your work visible to the crowd, production companies, directors, producers, and filmmakers.

Without a question, directing is one of the most crucial roles in the business, and for good reason. To succeed as a director, you need talent, abilities, hard work, and experience.