The World's largest community of Cast, Crew and Creative ProfessionalsDaniel Newman is Mandy.com’s Business Development Executive for UK and International Crew. Having spent most of the last thirteen years providing film production services in China, Daniel has helped companies like National Geographic and the Discovery Channel produce shows like "Abandoned Engineering" and "Positive Energy".
Drawing on his experiences as both an employer and an employee, Daniel wants to help students understand the best ways of finding work in the film industry. As a screenwriter and director, Daniel also wants to share his insights from having recently hired the cast and crew of his forthcoming Kung Fu comedy on The Mandy Network.
Listening to someone with so many years experience and being such an inspirational entrepreneur was fascinating and useful. There were definitely two main points that we got from Daniel. Firstly, be prepared - create a solid CV, portfolio and social media platform along with a concise and correct cover letter. Secondly, it was clear that now is the time to push yourself out of your comfort zone and go for it! Grab those opportunities and reach for the stars!
At the moment there are 100s of jobs being added to Mandy.com daily due to the lack of crew staff available. This is brilliant for creative students giving you amazing work experience positions that perhaps prior to the pandemic you wouldn’t have been able to gain. For many crew members, the pandemic gave them time to reflect on life and the long hard hours are really not best suited for a relaxed family life!
Daniel gave a huge amount of advice and here are some of the pointers to watch out for - what you should and shouldn't do in order to get that dream role.
Where is the market at?
Be aware of what the market needs and train accordingly, great advice from Daniel to ensure that you fine tune your search, the more niche you are the easier it will be to find work. Remember you won’t reach a director position straight away there are stepping stones to move through.
When you start to build a profile on Mandy.com it is important to focus on facts, to nail your social media, to list your qualifications and areas of expertise and to definitely include all those additional skills. Ensure you are available for the positions that you are applying for - check dates and locations. Also, interestingly enough having a driver's license as well as a car was deemed incredibly important, particularly when taking on a junior position and being able to quickly drive somewhere to pick something up!
Important! Make sure that all the platforms you register for such as Reed, Indeed, LinkedIn and Mandy.com - all match! Could be a make or break situation!
Useful CV tricks
Google yourself! Do you like what you see or is there room for improvement? You are in control of what is on there. If there are things you don't like make sure you change this to make yourself have a niche social media as well as online.
Double, triple check the contact information to make sure it is correct and links work
Swap CVs with a friend and ask them to critically evaluate your CV
Don’t use generic terms such as “work well in a team” - make sure you have evidenced everything on your CV.
Keep it simple and no longer than 2 pages
Let’s get it covered!
Focussed, specific, professional are important words to ensure your cover letter works. If you mention films or books that someone has directed, produced or been in, make sure you actually watch the film or read the book or clearly indicate that you have done so by giving extra information. Don’t just write a large chunk of text, make sure you break it up into paragraphs - makes it easier to read.
Include useful information such as if you live near the set, let them know; if you have the kit which will help them out - tell them. And lastly the email is the cover letter, no need to attach an additional document.
Meet, talk and ask questions. Start a word document of who you’ve met, whom you know and how you can introduce yourself and others to each other. Volunteer, gain experience and meet people.
As Daniel said the more experience you can get now as a university student, the easier it will be after you have graduated. Volunteering at expos and conferences such as film festivals like BFI or Aesthetic Film Festival will really help in your job finding. It is so important to grab these chances whilst you are young. Opportunities to help on really amazing things which you might not be able to do when you are older.
By pushing yourself out of your comfort zone you will create a network which will ultimately help you get that job!
Drawing on his experiences as both an employer and an employee, Daniel wants to help students understand the best ways of finding work in the film industry.