How to Become a Movie Projectionist

How to Become a Movie Projectionist. Movie projectionists are responsible for handling the lights, projectors and sound when showing a film to a movie theater audience. In addition to movie theaters, they also work in motion picture distribution and production companies. Some are even self-employed, working for private screenings or other special occasions. Here's how to become a movie projectionist.


    • 1

      Take high school, technical or college-level courses in keyboarding, basic computer skills, photography and film and video production. Technical skills are required to work with film projectors and other audiovisual equipment.

    • 2

      Gain experience by working at a movie theater. Whenever you're not selling tickets or popcorn, get a chance to learn from an experienced projectionist.

    • 3

      Train on the job. Learn how to open a film canister and remove the film reel. Use your hands or a machine to rewind film. Ensure that projectors are in sync with music, sound effects or commentary, and make repairs to the equipment as needed. Be prepared to monitor a movie's progress and change reels without show interruption.

    • 4

      Pursue a job as a movie projectionist. Fill out an application and attach a resume that details your experience with sound and visual equipment. Look for summer, evening or weekend jobs to get started in the career.

Tips & Warnings

  • A college degree is not required to work as a movie projectionist. However, you may want to pursue a degree in cinematography or film studies to open yourself to more career-related opportunities.
  • Another advantage of being a movie projectionist is that you get paid to be among the first to see new, popular movies. This may be the perfect job if you're a movie buff.


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