i’ve read a bunch of books on filmmaking. here are a few that stood out for me:
Producing and Directing the Short Film and Video
this one is the best of bunch! it covers the entire filmmaking process and is really packed with tons of useful information that you’ll end up referring to over and over. the previous edition was excellent, and i guess this new edition covers HD production and animation. it’s kinda pricey, so check if your library has it (the los angeles public library system has the previous edition).
this book had examples of people who made shorts, found success, and moved into features.Â because isn’t that the main reason why people make shorts?Â to use them as calling cards?Â the main thing i took away from the book was he suggested you shoot your short on 35mm film, because that’s what the industry people who might hire you are used to seeing. they don’t want to see low quality dv footage. now with HD so readily available, i’m not sure if shooting on 35mm is as important, but i’m sure that high production quality will make people take you more seriously.
this book would be good for someone who was thinking about making a short but not knowing where to start.Â it’s’ not as good for the nitty gritty, detailed information.
there are a ton of books out there on the subject, but of course the best way to learn is by doing. Â i think if someone wants to learn how to make short films, they should write a great script, find (not buy) a camera, find actors, shoot it, edit it, and repeat.Â at least that’s what i’ve been trying to do.