How Long Does it Take to Shoot a Movie?

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Shooting a movie can take anywhere from a few weeks to a few years, depending on the length of the feature, the budget and the availability of all involved. Find out how long it takes to shoot a short film, independent film, and feature film with tips from an independent actor and filmmaker in this free video on the film industry.

Part of the Video Series: Acting & Filmmaking Tips
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Video Transcript

In this clip, we're going to be talking about how long it takes to shoot a movie. Now, first of all, the period of time it takes to shoot a movie really depends on what type of movie that you're in or that you're making. Now, if it's just a short film that you're making with your friends, obviously, it can take, you know, maybe a weekend or two to shoot the movie. Basically, it depends on who's available. Now, if it's an independent film, these types of movies, it just really depends on the availability of everyone that's in the movie. Sometimes when everyone's available, if it's after work, and you're looking at basically if shooting an entire feature film movie independently, about, you know, six months to a year -- maybe three months. It really stretches on who's available and when they can work and when they can work on this movie. Now, if you're talking about a full-feature, high-budget Hollywood movie, those tend to take about two to three months. Sure, it seems like a short amount of time compared to, you know, an independent movie, but you really have to understand that these...when you're making these movies, when you're shooting these movies, you're working about 14 to 16 hours a day. You're starting at four in the morning and maybe going all the way to 10 o'clock, 11 o'clock at night. It's really an all-day project, but generally, it takes about two to three months. But the movie doesn't even come out for maybe another year after that because it's in post-production -- if they're adding CGI, that kind of thing. So but the filming process usually takes about two to three months on those movies. So that's basically generally how long it takes to shoot a movie.


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