For those of you considering producing your first feature, hiring a good 1st Assistant director is an invaluable part of the process. Why? Well a 1st AD is in charge of taking your screenplay, breaking it down and providing the initial schedule. That information is later used to budget your movie. And the budget is used in your business plan – which is used to attract potential movie investors.
Break Down and Schedule
Breaking down the script means you go through your screenplay, number each scene and highlight each element, including locations, characters, props, make up, wardrobe, picture vehicles and special FX…
All of these things cost money. And once the script is locked, any modification you make to the story or schedule, no matter how minor or major, will subsequently impact the budget.
If money is tight, you might consider performing your own breakdown long before you bring on a 1st AD. If you go this route, I suggest doing a web search for Gorilla Film Production Software or Movie Magic (formerly branded as Entertainment Partners). With these tools, you’ll have some help as you break down and schedule your movie.
In the event you want some more information about the mechanics of script breakdown and film scheduling, my very accomplished movie industry friend Peter Marshall has put together one heck of an online course. I have included a video below that provides more detail.
If you’re interested in learning more about Peter D. Marshall’s Script Breakdown and Film Scheduling Course For Indie Filmmakers, you can CLICK HERE or just bookmark this page for a later time. Additionally, if you know other filmmakers who might benefit from Peter’s insight, spread the word by clicking on one of those little buttons below.