Role Of A Camera Director

Camera directors direct multiple shots during live television events.

Camera director is a job within the television and broadcasting industry. In the U.S., camera directors are more commonly known as a multi-camera directors. Members of the profession are qualified camera operators or directors who arrange and direct multiple shots during live events, soap operas, news broadcasts and talk shows. Multi-camera directors have to perform multiple tasks and fill several roles in the preparation and broadcasting of a program.

Technical

Camera directors supervise and direct the filming with several cameras. The cameras can be held by operators, be focused with automated processes similar to security cameras or operated through a combination of both. Multi-camera directors need to update themselves continuously about new developments within the industry. They must learn about not only new inventions in camera manufacturing, but they also need to be aware of new editing software, processing techniques and film or video stock varieties. Camera directors also are responsible for hiring and training new talent in camera operation and editing.

Creative

Multi-camera directors supervise the filming of live broadcasts, including major sporting events, political debates and daily news programs. They make on-the-spot decisions concerning the best camera angles as live events do not follow scripts. In live sporting events, camera directors decide which key event or development gets an immediate instant replay from several angles. They need to be prepared for unexpected incidents and interruptions both in front and behind the cameras. Camera directors work closely with camera operators as well as lighting and sound engineers, decorators for studio designs, news readers, actors or talk show hosts to achieve the best possible visual experience for the viewers.

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Advisory

While camera directors are given a certain amount of independence when filming a program, they are also expected to co-operate with the producers, and, if appointed, the director. Both the producer and the director will have specific requirements and demands concerning the project. In the case of soap operas, the show’s producer and director will give the camera director a shooting script and storyboard that specifies camera angles and outlines of central or defining shots. The multi-camera director has to advise on technical and creative possibilities and impossibilities concerning the creative vision of the producer and the director, and comply with their wishes to the best of his abilities.

Training

Camera directors are usually trained at film schools and universities in media studies with specialization in camera operations or film directing. This usually is followed by work experience in the television industry. Depending on skill, experience and talent, they have to work from a few months to several years within the television industry to reach the position of camera director. Unlike cinematographers, camera operators and film directors who work independent film and TV producers, multi-camera directors are regularly employed by broadcasting and television companies and receive a regular pay check.