Aspiring filmmakers should begin by independently watching movies, reading film history books, reading websites and blogs on the film industry and top filmmakers, attending film festivals, etc. Even at the high school level, courses in drama, English and photography would be helpful.

Many filmmakers start out as actors themselves, in order to understand various directing techniques and styles from the receiving end. Someone who has a background in acting would be prime for attending a filmmaking program. In fact, many individuals who go on to take post graduate degree classes in either television or filmmaking generally have an undergraduate degree in a field relating to theatre.

There are many film or multimedia programs offered at colleges and universities. Narrative techniques, sound, lighting, cinematography, editing and computer-generated imaging is learned. As well, reading and writing scripts while enrolled in screenwriting classes, teaches the aspiring filmmaker about movie pacing and formatting. Different movie genres such as science fiction, horror, and fantasy are studied. Valuable contacts in the industry and opportunities for internships can be made while enrolled in school.

Qualities that filmmakers should have are a passion for film, leadership, decisiveness, confidence, and organization.

What are Filmmakers like?


Based on our pool of users, filmmakers tend to be predominately artistic people. Take our career test to see what career interest category best describes you.

Filmmakers by Strongest Interest Archetype

Based on sample of 1074 Sokanu users

Are Filmmakers happy?


Filmmakers rank among the happiest careers. Overall they rank in the 95th percentile of careers for satisfaction scores.

Filmmaker Career Satisfaction by Dimension

Percentile among all careers

Education History of Filmmakers

The most common degree held by filmmakers is Film Video And Photographic Arts. 9% of filmmakers had a degree in film video and photographic arts before becoming filmmakers. That is over 12 times the average across all careers. English Literature graduates are the second most common among filmmakers, representing 3% of filmmakers in the Sokanu user base, which is 0.7 times the average.

Filmmaker Education History

This table shows which degrees people earn before becoming a Filmmaker, compared to how often those degrees are obtained by people who earn at least one post secondary degree.

Degree % of filmmakers % of population Multiple
Film Video And Photographic Arts 8.6% 0.7% 11.5×
English Literature 3.3% 4.9% 0.7×
Communications 2.8% 3.3% 0.8×
Screenwriting 2.7% 0.1% 19.9×
Fine Arts 2.6% 2.0% 1.3×
Mass Media 1.9% 0.5% 3.6×
Drama 1.8% 1.1% 1.7×
Business Management And Administration 1.5% 6.5% 0.2×
Film Editing 1.3% 0.1% 13.3×
Journalism 1.2% 1.2% 1.0×
Philosophy And Religious Studies 1.2% 1.6% 0.8×
Liberal Arts 1.0% 1.9% 0.5×
Psychology 1.0% 6.8% 0.1×
Graphic Design 1.0% 1.3% 0.8×

How to Become a Filmmaker

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