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Thread: Filming abroad

  1. #1

    Lightbulb Filming abroad

    Hey guys,

    I am not sure if we have members who are filmmakers or documentary filmmakers who film abroad, but i if we have any - i would really like to pick your mind a bit.

    So, i obviously have filmed abroad, but those jobs always came from a client knowing me personally or by recommendation from someone who knows me.
    Those were usually personal jobs (events, weddings etc.) or corporate (events, promo, ads etc.) with a quick turnaround (usually 1-3 days of filming).

    But it isn't what i am looking for right now.

    I am more interested in longer projects (couple of weeks or months) of filming, either documentary type or long events like the World Expo in Dubai and so on.

    So, my question is - how do you land those type of projects?

    For example - i know of a Swedish guy who regularly shoots documentaries or short films in places like Africa, India, Asia and so on, but i have no idea how he lands those projects.
    I find it hard to believe that a client from idk, Kenya would hire a filmmaker from Sweden who is 10x more expensive then a local filmmaker to do a documentary there.
    So the clients must come from Europe.

    Are there some filmmaker / client networking sites that you can recommend?
    Or... how do international clients find filmmakers from abroad?


    I am super curious about this!

  2. #2
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    It's really easy.

    People contact you and ask if you're available and what your rates are.

    They get your details from people who have booked you in the past and were happy with your work and, as a result, recommend you.

  3. #3

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Rembrandt Rob View Post
    It's really easy.

    People contact you and ask if you're available and what your rates are.

    They get your details from people who have booked you in the past and were happy with your work and, as a result, recommend you.
    Thanks Sherlock, for this utterly useless comment made to a person with 7 years of filmmaking experience with his own production studio.

    Did you even bother to read the post i made?
    Evidently not!

  4. #4
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    Wind your neck in.

    From some of the sarcastic replies you have given to other posters it seems that you can give it but can't take it. I didn't realise you were so sensitive.

    If you really have "7 years of filmmaking experience with his own production studio" then why do you need to ask for advice on getting jobs?

    However if you want advice from a cameraman with 30 years broadcast experience, working all over the world (sorry to rub it in) on documentaries and dramas for all of the major broadcasters...

    Become an assistant to someone who is doing what you want, someone like this Swedish guy. Work your way up through the ranks. Don't bother going on a "film making" or "networking" website unless you are willing to work for nothing, or even at a loss. The only thing working for nothing gets you is more offers to work for nothing.

    Or...

    Make good videos.

    Get people to recommend you.

    There is, of course, the obvious answer which I assume a "person with 7 years of filmmaking experience with his own production studio " would already know. Get a producer and make your own productions.

    You're welcome.

  5. #5

    Default

    You want to pick a fight without any reason - fine by me!

    Honestly, i feel like you have some problems with reading text and actually understanding what was said?! It's like your brain is only capable to adsorb 1/3 of the information in front of you and then fills in the rest with random jiberish !

    Here is some evidence!

    When i say:
    So, i obviously have filmed abroad...
    Followed by:
    ...usually personal jobs (events, weddings etc.) or corporate (events, promo, ads etc.) with a quick turnaround (usually 1-3 days of filming).
    And then:
    But it isn't what i am looking for right now.
    Followed by a more specific statement:
    I am more interested in longer projects (couple of weeks or months)
    And even when i say:
    I have 7 years of filmmaking experience with my own production studio
    Your brain comes up with this:
    then why do you need to ask for advice on getting jobs?
    Are you for real now?
    Like how? How is a human being even capable of misconstruing something that was literary spelled out for you in plain sight.

    I even put the main question in BOLD text:
    how do international clients find filmmakers from abroad?
    I don't know - to me it looks like a very understandable question!
    How do international companies find other international filmmakers to work with.
    • It sure as hell is not by googling, because 70% of all the filmmakers i know or who i follow on social media don't show up in the first 100 pages of google search.
    • Sure, some clients might stumble upon a filmmaker in social media, but for the most part those guys have very low follower numbers. The chances of that happening are too low.
    • From what some filmmakers have told me - they are not under any agencies.
    • And mouth to mouth recommendations mostly only work within local regions. Doing a job for a Norwegian client will hardly lead to a job from a Australian client.


    So, it was a pretty legitimate question about how other filmmakers get international clients.

    In my case - i have 99% domestic clients and... just to clarify, no! - i don't need jobs (i am overworked as it is), but what i do need is to change my quick turnaround domestic clients with long project international clients!
    Hence my inquiry if there are people on this forum who have Business experience in this regard.

    About this:
    However if you want advice from a cameraman with 30 years broadcast experience...
    Not really!
    Here is why - as a cameraman you are hardly the one who actually talks with clients or runs business!
    I don't see how you could give legitimate advice on a topic you have limited knowledge about!

    This is further proven by your advice to someone who owns a production company to become someone ones assistant and "work you way up"!
    That's honestly the worst advice i have heard in years!

  6. #6
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    Yeah, whatever.

    Good luck if you go properly full-time professional instead of just pretending online.

    Edit: Seriously young man, calm down!
    Last edited by Rembrandt Rob; 03-14-2019 at 05:49 PM.

  7. #7

    Default

    I've seen some international opportunities fly around on sites like Upwork. They are rare and generally ask from someone from the client's home land to accompany them to another place to film their shenanigans but it happens. I've recently done a factory shoot abroad... well still inside the EU but that was for a client who had found me on a freelance website. These sites are not exclusive to freelancers by the way or at least on Upwork there's plenty of agencies operating on there as well so you might find something that fits there.
    The cats are watching us...

  8. #8
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    It seems to me Rob answered your question perfectly.

    Just like you need to think like your audience when writing/producing a film, you need to think like your potential client when looking for work.

    Imagine you're an organisation looking for a production company. What do you do?

    You think of people you've worked with before and approach them..
    You ask other people/corporates who they've worked with before (ie ask for recommendations)
    You see examples of work you like and track down who made them.

    In other words it's word of mouth and getting your work seen (the latter being particularly difficult)..

    This is pretty much the same for any trade whether locally, nationally or internationally.

    I doesn't seem unreasonable to expect someone who's run their own company for seven years to understand that.
    Tim

  9. #9

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    I’ve always trusted and respected Rob’s advice (I don’t always listen but that’s my problem!).

    I have to agree with Rob here (bloody know it all). This whole milarky is a fun adventure for me and from time to time people think I’m good enough to be paid. I’m filming overseas for a few dats this year because someone trusts me after working with them for years. To me it’s all about building a network (and going the extra mile when needed).

  10. Default

    I haven't traveled abroad for a client but I'm about to travel 2000 miles next month for a gig. From what I've read/seen and my experience is that these things in the media industry come from your network. Seldom someone gives away these opportunities to someone they found via a hiring process. Most people have their go-to people and try to get them to come with them.

    The client that is flying me to the gig is not doing any research, not seeking quotes. He is not negotiating my fees or telling me at all how or what to do. There's a ton of trust there that was built through other projects. So to reiterate what others are saying, I don't know of any way to get abroad gigs any other way than the regular way you get most gigs in this industry. Expand your network, do great work and make people happy. Other than that, try to do those things more with the kind of people that have abroad gigs

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