Want to know a secret that professional directors know and don’t often share?  Of course you do.  Here it is:

85% of the director’s job is casting.  If you get the right person in front of the camera, your film will be great.  But get stuck with the wrong talent, and you are in deep trouble. (For those of you with math OCD issues: another 10%  is helping talent to do their job, and the last 5% is staying out of the way.)

Having the wrong talent on screen is a lose-lose proposition for everyone.  Your video will suck, and the poor business owner or spokesperson or actor will look awful and uncomfortable.  Forever.  On Youtube.

Even though it’s hard, even though you may be getting paid by someone to do it, even though you may be a close friend or an employee of the person who wants to be the star of the video– never do a video where the on-camera talent looks bad.

Yes, I’m talking to you, director of this awesome fail of a music video:

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  • Billy says:

    They say sound is a large percent of how the video is perceived. This is true but in a different way because this song is not very good and not very well produced.

    I bet if this song was killer that this video might be taken as tongue-in-cheek bad and not as a failure. But don't quote me on that.

  • Hi Steve – thank you for the giggle…oops I mean education. If you hadn't positioned the video "awesome fail" I would have thought it was a parody! I just about fell off my chair re: the fashion faux pas around timecode:1.25 yikes! The director could have cut-away. Seeing this, I couldn't help but feel for the talent (even though that's not the point). Love your book too,straight forward and funny – excellent read thank you.

  • adam g says:

    How tactful you are Steve for this area of necessary discussion or rather teachable moment that is not heeded over and over again.. Especially tempted to let their values down is the starving Director …almost ready to bend at this crucial point that can affect a reputation..Thanks for caring so much

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