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Article Title:
What Do I Do After Film School?

Article Description:
I get this question a lot and have a serious opinion about it:
The most important thing is to always keep your shingle hanging 
out, saying "I am a freelance director."  Never say, "Ah I gave 
that up."

Additional Article Information:
701 Words; formatted to 65 Characters per Line
Distribution Date and Time: Tue Mar  7 02:37:34 EST 2006

Written By:     Paul Kyriazi
Copyright:      2006
Contact Email:  mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]

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What Do I Do After Film School?
Copyright © 2006 Paul Kyriazi
Feature Film Director

I get this question a lot and have a serious opinion about it:

The most important thing is to always keep your shingle hanging 
out, saying "I am a freelance director."  Never say, "Ah I gave 
that up."  Even if you have other jobs, never tear up your 
business card.

Keep contact with all active filmmakers from college. Work on 
their films. It's a business of showing up. Show up to shoots, in 
any capacity. Show up enough and do a good job, and be an 
ambassador of good will, and you have a good chance on being 
invited to work on other films. And remember, be courteous and 
respectful to everyone. The extra or stunt man of today's shoot 
could be the producer of tomorrow's shoot. It happened to me. One 
of my swords women fighters from "Weapons of Death" hired me to 
do a travelogue in Phuket, Thailand. And actress Barbara Leigh 
just hired me to direct her new audio-book "The King, McQueen, 
and the Love Machine", and play the part of Elvis.

My life changed when I realized that I was not only in the 
feature film business, but in the COMUNICATION business. Just 
like the the USA train companys that thought they were only in 
the train business and didn't invest in trucks and airplanes in 
the 40's and '50s. They were left behind.

So be a sound man, an extra, an actor, a novelist, a speaker, a 
film teacher, (but don't get stuck in a dead end job). Be those 
as a freelance. But not a stunt man. It's too dangerous.

Yes, you will direct, but be in the communication business.  Also 
you must start to develop your own projects that you feel 
passionate about. You never know when someone with money will ask 
you if you have a project. You should be able to instantly give 
him or her a script and budget and location plan and schedule.

Keep watching you favorite films over on DVD.  Keep reading books 
by directors and watching DVD bonus programs and listening to 
commentary tracks. This is an incredible teaching device that 
will help program your subconscious to keep you on the right 

Most important, to repeat, work on everyone's film. Yes, some 
will not appreciate your help, some will not pay you what they 
promised, but others will.

You must have some kind of short film or video to show someone 
when you get an opportunity.

I've directed six features (did post on many more) and still want 
to do more. That's why I did "Hard Rock Lovers" as an audio-book 
with famous actors. That's why I have it on ebay listed under 
those actors. Maybe a producer who is a fan of those actors will 
see it, buy it or request it from me, love the story and ask for 
a script, which I have waiting. But more than that, I'm still 
talking action on it, by getting it to producers via my agent.

Beware, age 26. That's when all my movie friends gave up. Four 
years after college. Their wives, girlfriends, or even parents 
said, "Well, you gave it a shot, now you have to get a real job." 
Yes, get freelance jobs. I always worked and at night I screened 
my first feature to buyers and future investors. Always work, but 
work freelance to be available for other film jobs.

Most of all, repeating, stay in touch with every active 
filmmaker, and make a contribution, whether it's passing on your 
used DVDs, helping to write a project, or whatever. You have to 
ask, ask the right people, have something to give, and keep 
asking other people.

If your interested in directing for the creative expression and 
lifestyle, or to do that one great story you have in your heart, 
you'll stay in it. However if you only have the dream of fame 
fortune and money, it's hard to stay motivated and will seek 
other paths for that.

And the best part is that you can't even imagine the surprises 
that come when you follow your dreams.  I have too many personal 
examples to list here, but it's amazing what comes and how it 

Paul Kyriazi - Feature Film Director



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