A report on Assistant director

Assistant director on a film includes tracking daily progress against the filming production schedule, arranging logistics, preparing daily call sheets, checking Cast and Crew, and maintaining order on the set.

- Assistant director

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Steven Spielberg (standing) with Chandran Rutnam in Sri Lanka, during the production of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (released 1984)

Filmmaking

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Process by which a motion picture is produced.

Process by which a motion picture is produced.

Steven Spielberg (standing) with Chandran Rutnam in Sri Lanka, during the production of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (released 1984)
A film production in Ystad 2022.
Sound recordist Curtis Choy (left) on location for Dim Sum: a Little Bit of Heart, an indie film by director Wayne Wang (center) on Clement Street in the Richmond District of San Francisco, California 1983
Spede Pasanen, a Finnish film director and producer, had a long, strained relationship with Finnish Film Foundation, a government-financed film-funding organisation which continuously refused to fund his movies, so many of his works are independent films.

Assistant director (AD): manages the shooting schedule and logistics of the production, among other tasks. There are several types of AD, each with different responsibilities.

Example of a 2-sided call sheet layout from the Open source call sheet tool G-Casper.

Daily call sheet

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Example of a 2-sided call sheet layout from the Open source call sheet tool G-Casper.

The daily call sheet is a filmmaking term for the schedule supervised by the assistant director and crafted by the 2nd assistant director, using the director's shot list, the production schedule and other logistics considerations.

Film director John Badham during filming of The Godchild in 1974

Film director

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A film director controls a film's artistic and dramatic aspects and visualizes the screenplay (or script) while guiding the film crew and actors in the fulfilment of that vision.

A film director controls a film's artistic and dramatic aspects and visualizes the screenplay (or script) while guiding the film crew and actors in the fulfilment of that vision.

Film director John Badham during filming of The Godchild in 1974
The film director gives last minute direction to the cast and crew, while filming a historical drama on location in London.
American director Steven Spielberg with Sri Lankan filmmaker Chandran Rutnam in Sri Lanka
The main competition jury at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival (Left to right: Gael García Bernal, Jia Zhangke, Sofia Coppola, Jane Campion, Jeon Do-yeon, Nicolas Winding Refn, Leila Hatami, Carole Bouquet, and Willem Dafoe

Despite the misnomer, assistant director has become a completely separate career path and is not typically a position for aspiring directors, but there are exceptions in some countries such as India where assistant directors are indeed directors-in-training.

Kurosawa on the set of Seven Samurai in December 1953

Akira Kurosawa

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Japanese filmmaker and painter who directed thirty films in a career spanning over five decades.

Japanese filmmaker and painter who directed thirty films in a career spanning over five decades.

Kurosawa on the set of Seven Samurai in December 1953
Kurosawa (left) and Mikio Naruse (right) during the production of Avalanche (1937)
Yukiko Todoroki played the female lead in Sanshiro Sugata opposite Sanshiro in Kurosawa's early film. Contemporaneous photograph from 1937.
Takashi Shimura played the dedicated doctor helping the ailing gangster portrayed by Mifune in Drunken Angel. Shimura later also performed in Kurosawa's films Seven Samurai, Ikiru, and Rashomon.
Toshiro Mifune, a frequent lead in Kurosawa's films, on the poster of 1950's Scandal
Dostoyevsky wrote The Idiot, which Kurosawa adapted into a Japanese film version in 1951. Perov's portrait from the 1800s.
Kurosawa based his 1963 crime film High and Low on Ed McBain's novel King's Ransom. Image of Ed McBain c. 2001.
Sidney Lumet successfully requested that Kurosawa be nominated as Best Director for his film Ran at the 58th Academy Awards. The award was ultimately won by Sydney Pollack.
Steven Spielberg helped finance the production of several of Kurosawa's final films. Spielberg at his masterclass at the Cinémathèque Française in 2012.
Throne of Blood cast and crew photo taken in 1956, showing (from left to right) Shinjin Akiike, Fumio Yanoguchi, Kuichiro Kishida, Samaji Nonagase, Takao Saito, Toshiro Mifune (in the jeep), Minoru Chiaki, Takashi Shimura, Teruyo Saito (scripter), Yoshirō Muraki, Akira Kurosawa, Hiroshi Nezu, Asakazu Nakai, and Sōjirō Motoki.
Ingmar Bergman, shown here in a bust located in Kielce, Poland, was an admirer of Kurosawa's work.
Jacques Rivette, a prominent critic of the French New Wave who assessed Mizoguchi's work to be more wholly Japanese in comparison to Kurosawa's.
Kurosawa's kamon, used by several of his characters as their as mon-tsuki

After years of working on numerous films as an assistant director and scriptwriter, he made his debut as a director during World War II with the popular action film Sanshiro Sugata.

James McTeigue

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Australian film and television director.

Australian film and television director.

He has been an assistant director on many films, including Dark City (1998), the Matrix trilogy (1999–2003) and Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones (2002), and made his directorial debut with the 2005 film V for Vendetta to critical acclaim.

Dolly Grip with Steadicam at Olympia Medical Center Miracle Mile on the set of the television series Southland

Below-the-line (filmmaking)

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Term derived from the top sheet of a film budget for motion pictures, television programs, industrial films, independent films, student films and documentaries as well as commercials.

Term derived from the top sheet of a film budget for motion pictures, television programs, industrial films, independent films, student films and documentaries as well as commercials.

Dolly Grip with Steadicam at Olympia Medical Center Miracle Mile on the set of the television series Southland

Assistant director

Production assistant

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Member of the film crew and is a job title used in filmmaking and television for a person responsible for various aspects of a production.

Member of the film crew and is a job title used in filmmaking and television for a person responsible for various aspects of a production.

Set PAs work on the physical set of the production, whether on location or on a sound stage. They report to the assistant director (AD) department and key set PA if one is so designated. Duties include echoing (calling out) "rolls" and "cuts", locking up (making sure nothing interferes with a take), wrangling talent (actors) and background, facilitating communication between departments, distributing paperwork and radios, and related tasks as mandated by the ADs. Set PAs usually work 12- to 16-hour days with the possibility at the end of a shoot to work more than 20 hours a single day and are regularly the "first to arrive and the last to leave".