This post is about whether or not filmmakers should use paid job sites to find and apply to film production jobs. Online there is a selection of job sites that focus purely on advertising film production jobs, some of these are free, others charge a monthly subscription to apply to them.
I will be mentioning some of the pros and cons of using paid film job sites, however, this is largely an opinion post and I am happy to discuss more on this topic and your experiences in the comment section below.
Finding Film Work
There are many ways to find crew jobs in the film industry. Firstly through your own contacts in the industry, from company websites (e.g. the BBC) and recently on Facebook groups. The easiest way is through film job sites. There are several of these active online. I advise filmmakers to find a handful of these sites that advertise jobs in their location.
You might like my list of film production job sites – Read Here
Some of these job sites are free to use however the larger ones charge a monthly subscription fee. This fee is different on every job site, usually in the form of a monthly subscription and can range from £5-£20 ($7-$27) per month.
Free film job sites such as The Unit List (Paid UK TV jobs) advertise paid work weekly. Free Job site Stage 32 (Varied World-Wide jobs) has a range of jobs mainly collaborative and offer a personal profile and community section (the ability to connect with other filmmakers).
Paid film job sites such as Mandy (Varied World-Wide jobs) has a range of jobs and offers a community section, ability to find actors, advertise for crew and a personal profile. To use Mandy’s full service the fee is £20 / $27 per month.
Free film job sites sometimes offer similar extras to paid sites. In general, paid sites offer more services and feature more work.
Pros and Cons
There is some controversy online over whether filmmakers should be charged to apply to jobs. Often filmmakers who use these services are new to the industry and students who may not have a lot of money to spare.
Those against paid job sites say these that these sites prey on eager new filmmakers and that the jobs featured on them can be found online for free elsewhere. Those who are pro paid job sites say that they help filmmakers find paid work easier and provide extra services as part of the fee (such as CV feedback).
Which is Best?
You will find no bias review here. Simple there are two film job site options for filmmakers looking for work. It would be easier of course if everything was free but the paid job sites are here to stay, they offer a service, one that is clearly labelled on their websites. Which is best and what you choose is your own personal choice, but I know of other filmmakers who strongly sit on both sides of the fence.
When it comes to paid job sites I am going to offer my own personal experience feel free to include your own in the comments section below. I have used paid job sites before and I have found paid work from using these.
Particularly I used Shooting People (UK & US jobs) when I first started out, I connected with filmmakers on here and was hired for two fully paid short film projects (Yes Fully Paid). One of these films and the contacts I made from it, lead directly to a paid feature film project. For film work especially, these job sites, paid or otherwise can be great for building a network of contacts – something that is a necessity for finding consistent film crew jobs.
As I say the prices of paid job sites do vary and range from approx £5 - £20 ($7-$27) per month. My take on this is simple if you can afford it, try one of the paid sites out for a month and see how it goes. If it doesn’t work out, make sure to cancel your subscription and that way you don’t lose a lot of money.
Talking to several freelancers I see that there are mixed thoughts on using these sites. Yes, they are legal, other industries have similar sites like these, it would be great if everything was free but that is not how business works.
Would you ever use a Paid Film Job site?
I will keep the below comments section open for the next few weeks, it would be interesting to hear what other filmmakers have to say on this. Alternatively, you can find me on Twitter and discuss this topic here - @amyclarkefilms