Things I wish I'd known before I went into production

By Natalie Roberts

Establishing Shot

2 min read

Jun 06, 2022

Hi I’m Natalie, I work in the production team at Storm & Shelter as an Assistant Producer and here are some things I wish I had known before I started my career in film & video production.

Get to know the tech 

It can only help.

Putting together a call sheet when you know more of the technical aspects of what goes into audio and video production means that you can make more informed decisions in the pre-production stage when it comes to crewing and logistics.

You’ll be able to ask (and answer) questions like:

  • What kind of space are you going to need?
  • How long does it take to set up?
  • Will you need a second camera op for that piece of kit?

The more specific your answers can be, the better your decisions will be and it will generally make your life a lot easier.

Trust your gut

If you have an inkling in your gut that maybe people are missing information or that not everyone is on the same page — say something, as there is probably a reason why.

You may think that you think you’re being a little annoying if it’s at the end of the kick-off meeting and everyone’s super excited to get things going, but it’s way better to say things at an early stage until it gets to delivery and the problem goes from being a headache to a full-on fire.

The worst that can happen is someone goes ‘Yeah that’s fine, we’ve got that all covered’ and everything can continue as normal and the best scenario is that you’ve picked up on something that could have got missed.

You’re not being annoying, you’re just being thorough.

Always check your postcodes

Even if you think you’ve double-checked it…check it again.

Even if you think someone else has checked it…check it again.

The last thing you want is to find out a few days from a shoot that even though you checked a postcode once, it was actually listed wrong on the website so the crew are actually staying two hours away from where they need to be.

No harm can come from checking three, to seventeen times.

Just ASK

Everyone says it, I’ve received it as advice so many times, but absolutely just ask.

People have different experiences, they have different connections, and production is changing all the time so you’re just simply not going to know everything.

You could be in this industry for years and years but can still come across a type of production you’ve never done before and you just need to be able to say you don’t know and ask the people who do.

Asking is just going to give you all the information that you need, and what’s better than that?

Never ever (ever ever EVER) assume anything

To do with anything. Just don’t do it. If you haven’t had an answer from someone, then take that as a no. That’s not confirmed.

Never assume.

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