5 top tips to make a film using your smartphone

There has never been a more exciting time to be a filmmaker. 

With new technology, making films is easier and more accessible than ever before. One of the greatest tools is the Smartphone. 

Films such as Tangerine by Sean Baker or Unsane by Steven Soderbergh, (starring Claire Foy) were both shot entirely on iPhone, showing the scale and potential of this little everyday device.

We caught up with Jesse Quinones, a London based director, writer and producer who is also a lecturer at ScreenSpace. 

Jesse gave us his top 5 tips making a film using your phone…

5 top tips for using your smartphone to make a film

1. Story, story, story. At the end of the day, whether you’re making a film on a Red Camera, an Alexa, or an iPhone, ultimately you need to start with a story.  Jesse added: “My suggestion is to tell a story you care about. If you care about it others will too.”

2. Work with the tools you have. If you’re shooting with your smartphone chances are you’re making an ‘indie’ film. Indie films are made on a tighter budget. And that’s no bad thing. Think of your lack of resources and time as positive, you’ll have to be creative!  Learn to make the best film you can using the tools you have.

3.  Find great actors. There are so many amazing actors. From students studying at a local college, to amateur actors who tread the boards at your local community centre – take the time to find exactly who you need. 

What your film may lack in scale and budget it will make up for with powerful performances.

4. Preparation is key. Make sure you do your preparation, this includes things like shot lists, and rehearsal plan. Making films is one of the trickiest artistic endeavours. It requires the brain of a drill sergeant with the heart of a poet. The more organised you are the better you can focus on creating beautiful images and moving performances.

5. Shoot on your smartphone with the edit in mind. Get the coverage you need to edit your film together. Jesse added: “One of the biggest mistakes I come across is lack of lack of coverage. And, he adds to would-be filmmakers:  “Make sure to get your inserts and transition shots. They will save your life.”

ScreenSpace has just launched a competition to shoot your own two-minute film and win a 4K Panasonic camera kit.