TV / Film Director

Job Description:

TV and film directors lead the creative and technical production for cinema and television.

Job Category:
Tourism, Hospitality & Entertainment

What you will do:

You’ll lead a team of cast and crew making films, TV programmes, documentaries, commercials, music videos or corporate videos.

Your day-to-day duties may include:

  • meeting producers to plan filming schedules and resources
  • developing scripts or ideas for programmes
  • developing storyboards
  • deciding how the production should look and where it should be filmed
  • hiring the cast and crew, or sourcing interviewees for documentaries
  • explaining technical requirements to different teams
  • directing actors on set or location
  • supervising the editing

On smaller productions, you may be involved in production work.


You’ll need:

  • knowledge of media production and communication
  • broadcasting and telecommunications knowledge
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages confidently

As well as:

  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail – paying attention to visual details, composition, and aesthetics is crucial for directors to create visually compelling scenes.
  • the ability to work well with others (teamwork skills) & leadership skills – directing involves working closely with a team of actors, crew members, and producers. Developing teamwork and leadership skills is essential for effective collaboration.
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • ambition and a desire to succeed
  • critical thinking and problem-solving: these skills are valuable for analyzing scripts, making creative decisions, and solving logistical challenges during production.
  • creativity and imagination: cultivate your creative thinking and imaginative storytelling abilities, as they are essential for bringing unique visions to life on screen.
  • communication skills: directors must effectively convey their vision and instructions to actors and crew members, so strong interpersonal and communication skills are vital.
Illustration of employee looking at workspace

Entry Requirements:

Becoming a TV or film director is a creative and competitive career path that typically involves a combination of education, training, experience, and networking. While there are no specific GCSE subjects that are mandatory for this career, certain subjects and skills can be advantageous for your future studies and career in directing. Here are some GCSE subjects and skills that can be beneficial:

  1. English: Strong communication skills, both written and verbal, are essential for directors. GCSE English can help you develop your storytelling abilities and understanding of narrative structure.
  2. Drama or Theater Studies: Taking GCSE Drama or Theater Studies can provide you with a foundation in acting, stagecraft, and dramatic techniques, which are relevant to directing for both TV and film.
  3. Art and Design: Understanding visual composition, aesthetics, and design principles can be beneficial for framing shots and creating visually engaging scenes. GCSE Art and Design can help you develop these skills.
  4. Media Studies or Film Studies: GCSE Media Studies or Film Studies can introduce you to the basics of film production, cinematography, editing, and film analysis.
  5. Mathematics: While not directly related to directing, strong math skills can be useful for budgeting and financial management in the film and TV industry.
  6. Digital Technology and IT: Familiarity with digital technology and computer software used in film and TV production, such as editing software and special effects programs, can be advantageous.

Post School

You’ll need experience of working in TV or film, and an in-depth understanding of the production process.

You could get this from camera or lighting work, acting or starting out as a runner. It can take several years to build up your experience.

You may find it helpful to take a filmmaking or media production course to give you some of the practical skills you’ll need, and to make contacts in the industry.

Another way to break into directing is to make your own films. You can market these to agents or enter them into film festivals and competitions.

Working Hours and Environment:

Your working hours on a shoot will often be long and irregular, and may include evenings and weekends.

You might work in a film or TV studio, or on location. Work may be anywhere in the country or overseas, so conditions will vary.

Career Path & Progression:

With experience, you might develop your own projects and raise the money to put them into production.