List of 22 Good Habits of a Successful Filmmaker

It takes years and an abundance of hard work, enthusiasm and dedication to become a successful filmmaker. One even needs to have the ability to take criticism and be open to knowledge throughout their career. Here are some habits that one may embody, to become a successful filmmaker.

list of Good Habits of a Successful Filmmaker

Good reputation

Having a good reputation is one of the chief elements that one needs to work on to become a successful filmmaker. There are stories about poor production, risky and unreliable practices at work and oppressors on a film set.

Having a reputation as such can ruin one’s career as such behaviour is not acceptable at any workplace and no one wants to work with such a person who is conceited and rude. This will only result in unemployment.

Good and a positive attitude

Having a positive attitude throughout the processes of filmmaking cannot only prove to be beneficial for oneself but for other crew members as well.

A filmmaker encounters several problems during the process and also on the set, having a positive attitude helps to see through the problem, find a solution for the same and stay in the task. Having patience also helps a filmmaker in every critical situation. Being respectful and polite to every crew member adds to the good reputation.

Work ethics

Having eminent work ethics also brings in an abundance of opportunities for a filmmaker to be successful. Working effectively and keeping the production work flowy is an important aspect to keep in mind.

While stuck with something, a filmmaker may discuss it with another crew member, which will reflect your will to listen to others and also your keenness towards producing the best quality work. Never forget to enhance the tools used in filming. This helps in bringing the best quality output.


Staying punctual and sticking to deadlines is one habit of a successful filmmaker that is appreciated by all including the members of the crew. But there always comes a time when situations go out of order and it becomes impossible to manage.

In circumstances like these one must make sure to communicate well with the client and take some time. A filmmaker needs to have an accurate estimate of the time he or she will take to complete a project before setting a deadline.

Stay open to knowledge

Staying updated with the latest technology and filming tools to help the crew and even to have the best quality output for your project is very important. Staying up to date with the news and techs about the industry also helps to be a successful filmmaker.

One may also take a film course or even read putative and well-known texts to educate oneself. Staying transparent to knowledge must be a persistent fraction of a filmmaker’s career.


As the industry is more about your networks rather than your knowledge, no matter how talented or skilled you are if you fail in expanding the network, you are hardly going to succeed. One may upgrade their website or even take help of IMDB page, etc.

Attending film festivals, conventions and shows also help in building a connection with the people of the industry. One may also be a part of several online networking platforms for the industry and also with online portfolio platforms.

Communication skills

Communication is an element that can never be ignored or underestimated in the industry. A filmmaker needs to have very good communication skills to explain his idea to the client as well as the crew. Networking also needs good communication skills.

A filmmaker must have good oral as well as written communication skills to precisely brief his idea to his team and crew in the first place to have the desired output so that the idea can eventually be delivered to the target audience as well.


To be successful in a filmmaking career an individual needs to understand, analyze and discuss the composition, shots and sound of each film that is watched. Asking questions for the same is extremely necessary to have a detailed and clear understanding of the subject watched.

One should always go on creating or, as the popular saying states that a creative mind that is kept unused, eventually loses its creative essence. This even helps to improve the quality of work and become a successful filmmaker.

Sensible Content

Some uncountable people tend to create content these days. But a successful filmmaker needs to think of subjects and ideas that are different and no regular or obvious content. They may also discuss their ideas with their team and listen to their opinions and ideas as well.

This helps to bring out the best output and enables them to become trusted, appreciated and exemplary individuals in the industry.

Search for flair in locations and areas that are unforeseen

The experiences and words of legendary filmmakers have always suggested hunting for talents in places, situations and locations that are unanticipated and unexplored. The results often amaze the world and identifying such talent always marks a successful filmmaker.

Have faith in your idea and imagination

Having faith in your imagination and working to develop the idea may bring fruitful results. Many filmmakers have accepted the fact that they never directed or made a film on a subject or plot that is not made up.

They let themselves be open to their minds and ideas and work on them. They never alter their thought or idea for anything.

Set goals

A filmmaker who is motivated to be successful needs to be in practice setting a time limit for each project or else projects remain incomplete. Goals need to be set, and one needs to maximize his or her work rate and think of steps that are manageable, effective and helpful in achieving those goals.

Each day must be enveloped with maximum energy as well as time that will enable an individual to achieve the subsequent step for a larger goal.

The budget must not be considered to be everything

The budget does have its importance but cannot be marked as everything for a film project. The creative process of filmmaking might be harmed due to commercial pressures on a movie of a big budget. One may take the example of the movie Fargo that was directed by the Coen Brothers.

The movie might not be a big commercial success but it earned itself seven nominations at Oscar as well as two awards for best actress and screenplay, respectively.

Team Management

A successful filmmaker works well with this team. He or she knows how to collaborate with cinematographers, actors and other members of the crew. They need to be polite and compassionate towards everyone present in the set even towards extras, caterers and interns.

A filmmaker’s spontaneity, as well as intuition, is equally important as any other habit. A successful filmmaker has accurate knowledge about when to command and when to surrender and uses it as per the need of the situation on the set.


A successful filmmaker can maintain his or her pace so that no one on set feels the rush. An attitude like this enables everyone including the actors to perform their best and also adds to their confidence. Acting with patience and having a positive attitude and behaviour also helps them earn the respect of the team.

Rational and practical

Only a script or content does not need to be sensible. A filmmaker must be aware of the constraints of the budget, crew and actors as well. Being inordinately and absurdly aspiring can result in the burnt-out quality of the project being worked on and even destroy the morale and potential of the cast as well as the crew.

Being realistic, practical and appropriate with shooting schedules will only prove to be beneficial for crew and actors as well to stay on track. This is an important habit and quality of a good filmmaker.


Shouting and screaming on the set is an indication of poor communication skills. A successful filmmaker must have the ability to convey the idea to the team and actors without screaming on set. This kind of action creates an atmosphere of tension, agitation and excruciation on set and nobody appreciates such behaviour in any place of work.

Actors and the members of the crew are ought to be given respect. A successful filmmaker never comes out with such an attitude. This only builds a bad reputation for a filmmaker.

Has the ability to control

Orientating actors and helping them to get ready for a sequence to be shot is a crucial role of a filmmaker.

Giving them room to try new things and ideas and even to fail is a sign of a good as well as a successful filmmaker. They listen and understand their actor’s points and then model the performance from there.

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