By Nick Willoughby

There are so many different roles in digital filmmaking. You can see this when you watch the credits at the end of a mainstream film: The credits seem to go on for ages at the end of a film as they thank all the people involved, from the actors to the costume designers.

The following list describes some of the main roles in making a film. You don’t have to fill every role with your film, of course, but these are your possibilities:

  • Writer: The person who writes the story and script for filming. The writer is really involved at the start of the filmmaking process, but occasionally he or she can be invited to be on set when filming.

  • Executive producer: The person who provides the money and support to make the film. Films cost a lot of money, so without executive producers, many films wouldn’t be made.

  • Producer: The person responsible for organizing the production and filming from start to finish. Some of the duties of a producer include working with writers, the director, and the cast to prepare the script ready for shooting; organizing and managing the film crew; planning and scheduling the shoot; reviewing the edits with the director; and organizing the distribution of the final film.

  • Production manager: The person who works with the executive producer to organize the people needed to make the film.

  • Director: Directors work with the actors and crew during filming to tell the story and to get the best result for the audience. They also help to refine the story and script before filming and review the edits during post‐production.

  • Assistant directors: The person who works with the director to organize the crew and actors and to make sure everything is running smoothly during filming.

  • Director of photography: The person who works with the camera and lighting crew to make the shots look great. They also work with the director to decide on what types of shots to use. In small productions, sometimes the director of photography is the camera operator.

  • Location scout: The person who decides on the locations to use for each scene before filming. They spend a lot of time travelling around looking at potential locations for films.

  • Casting director: The person who auditions the actors to play the characters in the film. They have to sit through a lot of auditions to make sure that the person they choose for a role in a film is the right one.

  • Camera operator: The camera operator is responsible for filming and setting up the camera shots for each scene.

  • Boom operator/sound mixer: The person responsible for holding the microphone and recording sound on set. The boom operator also monitors the sound during filming to check for volume levels and any sound issues or background noises.

  • Gaffer: Gaffers work with the director of photography or camera operator to set up lighting for each scene.

  • Key grip: Key grips are responsible for much of the equipment used in filming, including tripods, dollies, cranes, lighting, and so on.

  • Props master: The person responsible for finding props needed for each scene. Some props need to be designed and built for a scene and others can be bought.

  • Makeup and hair: The person responsible for actors’ makeup and hair on the set. Often simple makeup is needed to stop shine on the face from the lights, but sometimes more complicated makeup is needed to create an effect.

  • Costume designer: The person responsible for the clothes worn by actors on set. The costume designer will have to obtain clothes based on the character played by the actor and sometimes will have to create costumes for a character.

  • Actors: These are the people who play the characters in the film. They take advice from the directors to bring the character to life using the dialogue written in the script.

  • Editor: Editors are responsible for placing the footage together in the editing tool to tell the story. They often work to make sure the director is happy with the final result.

  • Craft service: This is the department responsible for providing food and drinks for the cast and crew. This is an important role and one easily forgotten when organizing a film shoot.