How to write a Production Assistant Resume. I also wrote a popular article with CV writing tips for filmmakers here. You can watch the short video I made below or read the post -
There is a small art to CV writing. The biggest problem I see with resumes is that are too detailed. They are not clear enough. A producer needs to simple glance at your resume and know that you can do the job.
1. Write your name and job title at the top
On your production assistant resume put your name and job title at the very top. It must be clear at first glance who you are and what job you do. Write your name in bold at the top of your resume along with the job position you are applying for. Even if you have never worked as a production assistant before claim you are one, have confidence.
I also have a 1-1 CV design service for filmmakers you can read more about this here
2. Lists and bullet points
Keep everything as lists and bullet points on your CV. Someone hiring you should be able to to skim down the resume and see that you can do the job within a few seconds.
For previous film work write your job title, the production company and the date you worked on the production. You could also write the producer’s name or any details of the production that might sound sexy (Name dropping on your CV does help).
If you have never worked as a production assistant before, keep any jobs that you mention on your CV relevant to film. Student films are OK to mention if this is your only experience. Just don’t say you worked as director on a student film if you are after a production assistant job.
3. Keep everything relevant
Keep everything relevant to film work if you can. If you worked in a supermarket stacking shelves and have never worked on film job in your life you could write this under a section called other work .
Supermarket Staffer 2yrs. – Good with customers. Confident on the telephone and with Computers. If possible don’t put down anything other than film set work.
When I first started out looking for film jobs. I put a number of student film projects onto my CV (The producers didn't know that these were unpaid jobs). I also put down that I had done some student radio work ( With the hope of showing that I was confident with media and technology). Some people say not to mention anything other than film work on your Production Assistant Resume but this is not always possible when you're first starting out.
What your CV must do is say that you want the job, that you can do the job and that you are passionate about film.
One Skill that is very useful – Driving. If you can drive and or have a car – put this in Bold onto your production assistant resume. If you are licensed to drive other vehicles and have a clean license put all this on as well.
Other Skills - Computer literate, confident on the telephone, confident with technology (all of these are good things to put down). Anything impressive – I won a screenwriting award once so I put that on there. Name dropping helps, name dropping well known production companies helps a lot.
4. Keep it short
A Production Assistant Resume should be 1 page long. Applying for any other film role never make it more than 2 pages long. A filmmakers CV should be short clear and straight to the point. Write in one sentence what education you have. I write that I Studied Film Production at Liverpool Hope University on my CV and that is all (I don't mention my GCSEs).
5. Cover Letters
Filmmakers cover letters should be just like their resumes short clear and straight to the point. Here are two examples of cover letters I sent off for film jobs.
The first one was for a camera trainee role found Via Mandy.com. On the CV I sent along with this I listed what camera I had. I also listed what editing software I can use. This was the cover letter that got me the job.
Hello, my name is Amy Clarke and I am a local filmmaker from Liverpool. I am interested in the job as I have been looking for local film work for a while now to develop my skills as part of the camera department. I would love the job as it would give me the opportunity to work and learn without the worry of having to travel for long distances to find it. I am hugely passionate about filmmaking and believe I would be a good choice for a new member of your production team.
thank you for your time. yours sincerely,
For a job on a high budgeted film as a Script Supervisor ( I was sent the listing to this through Creative England ). I sent off this cover letter with my CV attached.
My name is Amy Clarke and I am freelance Script and Continuity Supervisor from Liverpool.I would love to be part of your production I am free all of June, July and August to work on your film. Please see my CV attached.
We could always meet up and have chat about the film this week. All the best,
My CV was read and I had tea with the director that very week.
There is nothing special about my cover letters they are short, clear and to the point. To wrap it up all resumes for film jobs must be short, clear and neat. When I first started out I applied to tons of job applications, I was cocky too. When I narrowed down my crew position finally to Script Supervisor (because you don’t plan on being a production assistant forever right) I found getting a job was much easier.
When I had 5 credits of being a Script Supervisor on feature films I could get any job I applied for. Film crew work is all about credit collecting. It’s a tough game, not one I play anymore but it is definitely possible to get work in film.
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