By Lily Cooper
Professional Writing Major, College of Humanities and Social Sciences
Getting a foot in the door when it comes to the film and entertainment industry can be tough, especially when you are young and have close to no experience. It can seem overwhelming when looking at everything as a whole and while people tell you to “just get an internship,” it’s easier said than done.
Here are some tips to help every future filmmaker squeeze their way into the industry. Who knows, this may just lead to your journey in making the next big motion picture. Check them out below:
1. Ask Your Professors
Professors provide the best connections with the industry and you never know who your professor may know. They also have good advice and knowledge on what internships you should apply for, how and what to do for it. They have been in this world longer than you so they can help you craft a solid resume and application.
2. Call and Ask
If you look in The Hollywood Reporter and Variety, you can find weekly lists of every television and film production that is being shot. A majority of these lists will include numbers for the production office. Call the number and ask for the production coordinator and explain that you’re looking for an internship opportunity. From there, they can help you out.
3. Don’t Limit Yourself to One Area
The saying goes, “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket” and this is true in this situation! Apply to internships that are all over the country. Not only will it let you travel and explore if you get the internship, but it will give you different perspectives and push you outside of your comfort zone.
4. Film Festivals
Yes, you can even intern at film festivals! Whether it’s a local film festival or one in Los Angeles, it’s a great opportunity to network and gain experience. It is also a great way to meet indie directors and producers in your city. You will potentially have access to several industry professionals and access to several creative films before they get picked up. Imagine how cool of an experience that would be!
5. Check out Television Networks
Check out a television network for internships. It is a good way to get your foot into the world of filming and depending on the network, there are a variety of departments to choose from. Going this route usually allows for stable hours and gives you lots of options. Even Hulu offers internships.
6. Don’t Discount Because of Pay
A majority of internships are unpaid but don’t let that stop you from applying. While you will probably do some sort of menial work sometime during it, you will also be exposed to so many things and have something to put on your resume. An internship practically pays for itself in experience and getting you through the door.
Sometimes a company may offer a stipend or minimum wage, but don’t expect it. You can’t expect to start at the top of the chain so be prepared to work your way up.
7. Don’t Give Up
The most important thing when it comes to internships is to never give up. You may have to fill out a lot of forms and apply to a bunch of places, but it only takes one yes in a sea of no’s to jumpstart your career. Search through Google, do your research and dig for the internships. They won’t come to you so you will have to put in the work. It’s all worth it in the end though.
If you’re interested in pursuing a career in film, learn more about the programs within the College of Fine Arts and Production and check out our website or click the Request More Information button on this page.