Producing

4 Steps to Producing a Short Film

This weeks post is written by one of our veteran intern video producers, Connie Lynn Vázquez, outlining what she sees as the four most critical steps to follow when producing a short film.


To the date of receiving the awesome opportunity to produce a short film that would show in the video, “Surge”, produced by CCM, I had only produced reality pieces. This would be my first narrative. With the obvious differences, I knew I was in for a treat.

Like everything in life, there are some difficulties, but those difficulties motivated me and my team. Before I even could start filming, there were things that needed to be broken down first.

Step 1: Know your deadline.

Once you do that, Step 1B is to read the script.

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The list begins with: What do you need? Where does this script take place? How many characters? What are the necessary props? What is the vision and look? Just some of the basics. I read through the script and found out everything I needed, and that is where the fun began.

Step 2: CALL, CALL, CALL – Lock it all down.

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I called people regarding booking a school, which is where the short film is set. I called people regarding casting. I called people regarding extras. I called people to report on all the people I called. The number one thing I learned about booking things is that just because you locked certain things down one day doesn’t mean the next day will be as secure.

Step 3: Now that you have everything you need and have done rehearsals, it is time to film. 

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It was time for filming, and we filmed sporadically for 7 days. It was tough because the pre-production was very similar to reality pieces, but now during filming, I had to know how to work with actors and extras, as well as making sure my team knew what to do, and what to do next. Producing definitely means keeping your cool and balancing everything at once.

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Being a video producer for a short film had its pressures, but I loved how it pushed me and stretched me to get the best result out of everything and everyone. With all the things that could have gone wrong, or the small things that did not work out as I wished, Step 4 is the one step that is included throughout the above three steps–Keeping God centered above all.

Here is the truth: You can do nothing by yourself. If you depend on yourself and leave God out of the mix, things will rarely go the way you want it to. Spend time with Him before shooting, pray with and for your crew. Ask Him to be present in all things as you go about your work.

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Keep these four steps in mind as you start your next project, and you will be off to a good start!


-Written by: Connie Lynn Vázquez, Class of January 2014

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