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Film MA - No practical experience

  • 09-05-2014 7:26pm
    Registered Users Posts: 2

    I'm in a predicament as to moving forward with my career. I have a BA in English and Philosophy and also an MA in Film Studies. Film is what I want to do long term but I have had no positive responses to applications for jobs or internships anywhere. My areas of interest are writing, production and directing.

    It has been two years since I graduated and since then I have left the store that put me through college in Cork City in favour of Dublin. I thought this would broaden my options somewhat. I took up a job in marketing/publications for 6 months to settle myself and ended up leaving because of HR issues with an inappropriate manager. (I have two strong references from more senior staff than this manager to support me in the decision to leave.) Now that I'm on the jobs market again I'm trying to get into film and its just not happening.

    All the internships paid or otherwise are tied up in job schemes and that means being on social welfare for at least 3 months before even being considered for placement. My education and interest in the field are irrelevant according to the social welfare office. I can't survive on what they're saying I'm entitled to, which they have justified by many ridiculous arguments not relative to this forum.

    I would consider option B in this case to be undertaking a practical MA to support the theoretical experience I already have. Because I already have a level 9 degree I will get no funding whatsoever. I am living with my partner and studying full time would render me unable to come up with my half of the rent or my living expenses. I do not qualify for rent allowance and besides that, our landlord doesn't accept it. Furthermore living with my partner at the age of 23 does not imply that she will support me; we are financially independent.

    I have interviewed 6 times in the last 4 weeks. One panel member said he would be "clipping my wings" if he gave me the job in advertising instead of letting me make films.

    It hardly seems justifiable to me to have spent thousands putting myself through years college to find the government have disregarded Arts Postgraduates' plight in looking for work experience. Do young educated people seriously need to get themselves into debt for years and avail of ridiculous social welfare rates to get experience?

    I want to work. I have never been out of work before now and I certainly don't want anything for free. Has anyone else been in this situation and come out of it positively?

    All advice is welcome.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,548 ✭✭✭rockbeast

    Hello Katiemcmc,

    I just came on here to post a question for a friend regarding the MSc in Digital Film Production being run by Filmbase and awarded by Staffordshire University and saw your post!

    My friend is hoping to do the course next September but unsure if an MSc. from Staffordshire University is rated...Does anyone know how he could judge this?

    WRT your own situation, and having being involved myself in film production a number of moons ago, I'd say that with your current qualifications and lack of practical filmmaking experience you'd be unlikely to go straight into a role in a production company without interning first at a minimum.

    So if you need to work full-time and it isn't an option to work at producing non-paying independent films, you may have to take an alternative route to gain experience, which at 23 means you have plenty of time.

    Just a quick look on IFTN and RTE shows two current jobs, one at RTE and one at TV3 which may be worth applying for.

    With your current qualifications and experience (marketing/advertising), a well-worded CV and cover letter in addition to some research, should make you a candidate for these jobs or similar.

    Then it will be a lot easier to transfer to a Prod. Co. later...

    An alternative route for sure but skills learned in either or similar would make you a better future candidate.

    Hope that helps.:)

    PM if you want any further advice or suggestions regarding getting into film in Ireland.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,924 ✭✭✭Fatboydim

    Hi Katiemc

    Your MA is unfortunately worthless, other than if you want to teach. It matters not a jot in the industry. You say you are interested in Production, Directing and writing. Pick which you like best and go for that... Once you've got your foot in the door you can diversify. But be aware that at the moment the business, particularly here in Ireland is very slow. Despite all the good publicity you may read. Do not take another course it's pointless... you would do better advised to use that money to make a short film.

    May be worth getting in touch with Element as they are putting together the new TV3 soap Red Rock, and I would imagine they will want interns in all departments.

    But decide which discipline interests you most and then any advice I can give would be more pertinent.

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,548 ✭✭✭rockbeast

    Can't believe I took ten mins out of my time to respond to that post:confused:

    Not a ding thanks!:rolleyes:

    Bit like the Irish Film industry, I s'pose:eek:

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,946 ✭✭✭Banjaxed82

    Every time I come across something like this, I post this video.

    This she should be compulsory viewing for anyone wanting to be become a film maker.

  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 890 ✭✭✭audi12

    should have done business in college loads of career paths

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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,548 ✭✭✭rockbeast

    audi12 wrote: »
    should have done business in college loads of career paths

    ...with French

  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 890 ✭✭✭audi12

    rockbeast wrote: »
    ...with French

    French would not be a bad language to do it with Business is an excellent course to do