Everything you need to know about writing your film production resume (or film production CV if you are from the UK as the word resume is rarely used over here).
Regardless of which continent you are from the same film production resumes design format can be used. This post also comes with a free Filmmaker resume template to download!
If you prefer to watch a video on this topic I made one here
I also created the E-book 'Find Work In Film' which goes into detail on how to find and apply to film jobs - More Info Here
Does your film production resume pass these 10 steps -
Your resume is 1-2 pages long
Your resume is saved in PDF format
Your name is at the top and clear
Your job role is at the top and stands out
You have shown your contact details
Your personal bio is a short paragraph
Your credits are listed most recent at the top
Your education is short and ideally relevant
Your resume is streamlined and neat
Your resume is saved as your name and job role
I save my Resume as - My Name. My Job Title. Resume. PDF format is also important as you don't know what computer your file will be opened on, all computers open Adobe PDF files.
Download your copy of the film production resume template -
Why is a film production resume needed?
When you first start out working in the film industry you will have little to no contacts. Yes finding work in film is all about who knows who - however at the start of your career you will have to apply to jobs online, and you will be asked to show a resume every time you do so.
There is a general thought that a filmmaker does not need a resume since all of their work comes from word of mouth. This is more likely to happen later on in your career.
When I was a Script Supervisor film producers often asked for my Resume. Even when I had worked for the Director before, the producer needed convincing that I could do the job.
The Five second rule
I have been educating myself on resume writing and I see that most industries follow a 20 second rule.
Meaning that the person hiring you should be able to get the basic facts on who you are and what you do within 20 seconds of glancing over your Resume. For a film production resume you need to think much shorter.
Imagine that fifty or so resumes are sitting in the producers email box. The producer needs to hire someone today and they are already super busy.
Make it as easy as possible to be hired.
Most resumes contain lengthy personal descriptions and are not clear with what job role the person is applying for. Within five seconds of glancing over your resume make sure that producer knows your name and job role.
Film Production Resume Layout
Download your copy of the Film Production Resume Template -
The Film production cover letter
Cover letters need only be short and simple. It is unlikely anyone will have the time to read a lengthy cover letter, a short paragraph saying who you are, what you do and why you are fit for the job is all that is needed.
Full-time, Contracted lifetime jobs working for companies will have a longer process (such as if you were applying to the BBC). Major Companies will have a lengthy interview process and a more formal cover letter will be needed.
When you work on a film production, you work as a freelancer (aka your self employed) and these jobs hire people on a job by job basis.
In film you will be hired a few weeks before a production begins (and often only a week before production begins).
Producers are busy with so many different tasks they don’t have the time for formal interviews. This is why film production resumes and cover letters need to be short and to the point.
I have also written a post with more info on Cover Letters which comes with film production Cover letter examples - Read here
What to do with my resume?
Applying to jobs online is easiest to find film production work. I have created a list of film production job sites - Read here
Some of these sites allow you to create a profile and upload your resume. Place your resume on film crew dictionary’s like Mandy and if you are in the UK Creative England. You could also create your own website and include your show reel and resume for download.
Places you can find film production work
Online Job sites (Find a List here)
Online Communities (Facebook Groups)
Networking Events (Find a list here)
Ask your Contacts (Email and ask your contacts outright)
Note: Make sure to update your resume after every production.
I hope this has been helpful, any questions on resume design or finding work in film feel free to ask below!