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Is a degree in film worth it?

The answer depends on your budget. The more you want to make, the more money you need to invest.

For example, in London, for most documentaries it is easy to produce films of a certain length for just £50, but if you have a bigger budget, you need to make five films with the same length in the same length in order to break even on your budget.

You will find a lot of different funding sources for filmmaking – you do not have to go on fundraising, and you can use your savings (which could be invested in your next film) to finance your next film if the need arises.

A degree in film production will boost your business prospects in three important ways:

Carl Forsman - UNCSA
You can get work directly with the producer or director who invested £250, and not be subject to the cost of travelling to London to shoot one of your three films. That could mean you are able to make a third film, or perhaps start your own business. You can work with a professional cinematographer. An independent cinematographer, like Jim Taylor of Nerve, knows a number of cinematographers and the way he sets everything up makes for a successful production: A long exposure, very controlled and controlled lighting, a lot of tracking shots, and then the camera and crew can move from location to location. If you are a self-financier, you can get access to camera equipment that may cost £80,000 or more, like a Canon 5D Mark II or Canon 50D. With that sort of money invested, you can afford to hire a professional cinematographer, or you can hire yourself and your cinematographer to make a film. There are even many free online courses to help you do this. Many film schools have some very effective tutorials, and if you are a cinematographer yourself, you can make great money with your own skills.

You can also work with an independent production company. In most cases you will need to contact a company you found. They have a filmography degree and will advise on how to produce a film professionally (or by hiring a studio).

In some situations you’ll end up working directly with an actor – this is what an actor does before the film is finished.

A degree doesn’t guarantee you a gig, or any sort of job, but it will definitely help you make more money. You could even do a degree in acting in film-making – for instance, if you studied in film-