This week I filmed my final university production, which was a television show called Animal Earth. I mentioned this production a couple of blog posts ago, but here we are studio filming now complete. This production has been a labour of love and I am so proud looking back on it now! I was director from day one with this project when I first came up with the concept and seeing it grow into what it is now, feels amazing. So today’s blog post is all about how to make the best television production you can!
Plan every second. You can’t just show up on the day and hope for the best, 90% of your show’s planning takes place outside the studio. So buckle down, start a Google Drive and work through all the paperwork that has your name on it.
This is an important one which many people don’t realise which is money isn’t everything. You can make amazing sets on a shoestring budget as long as you’re savvy enough with your money. I wrote a post all about props buying last week which I will link here if you wish to find out more. Most of our props were bought and sourced from Poundland, B&M, crew members houses, donated to us, or were already in the props cupboard. Overall, our set cost £130, which is very cheap for a set on this scale. We were able to keep the cost low by sourcing props ourselves, and reusing whatever we could get our hands on. Additionally, we contacted a local shop which donated over £50 worth of stock for one of our segments.
Make sure that you and your group always turn up for studio rehearsals, especially if you have never done any studio work before. Making a tv show VS making a film is completely different, which is why you need all the practice you can get.
Don’t be afraid to be ambitious. If you want to do a niche show that requires loads of guests, experts and possibly children and animals (the taboos of live television), then go for it! Sometimes you’ve got to take that leap or you’ll never know how good it could have been.
Always remember to respect every role, as every role matters. From director to camera operator to vision mixer to autocue, every job is needed, so everyone should be respected for that.
Push yourself. When you feel like giving up, keep going. When you feel like you’re not doing well in your role, work harder. Whatever you do don’t give up. Give yourself a break when needed, then get straight back to working afterwards.
And finally, when you feel like giving up remember to keep going for yourself and those who didn’t believe you could do it. Prove to yourself that you’ve got what to takes, and prove to those who didn’t think you could that they were wrong. Don’t argue or fight people who doubt you, instead work hard, you’ll be glad that you did as it feels so much better.
I hope you enjoyed this post and found it a bit useful for your future productions. Just remember, to keep moving forward and never give up. Thanks for reading.
Until next time!
Film/Show of the day: Matilda (1996)