Advanced Directing Class: How to Plan and Execute Your Shoot

Taught by Clay Liford

$159.20 $199

On Demand Class - For immediate download. Unlimited access for 1 year.

Start Learning

Please make sure you use the same email address as the one you use to sign in to Stage 32, otherwise you won't have access to your webinar.
apply Your coupon will be applied after you agree to terms below.

- or -

$159.20
TOTAL PRICE:
Overlay Icon

Stage 32 Next Level Education has a 97% user satisfaction rate.

Class hosted by: Clay Liford

Award-Winning Independent Filmmaker, SLASH (SXSW), MY MOM SMOKES WEED (Sundance)

Clay Liford is an award winning independent filmmaker and director of photography whose projects have premiered at Sundance Film Festival, SXSW, Munich, AFI Film fest and more. As a director of photography, Clay has shot over twenty-five features, including the SXSW award-winning films ST. NICK and GAYBY. His film credits also include WUSS, EARTHLING, SLASH, and MY MOM SMOKES WEED, a Sundance Film Festival favorite. As an indie filmmaker, editor, and writer, Clay has mastered the art of pre-production and production so that his projects move like clockwork. And as a film production instructor at the University of Texas, Clay has become proficient at teaching his methods for efficiency and artistic self-sufficiency. Now he’s sharing what he knows with the Stage 32 community. Full Bio »

Summary

Advanced and in-depth 2-part interactive directing class with award-winning SXSW and Sundance director Clay Liford

Learn how to handle shot coverage, scheduling, and time management on set!

 

Perhaps the biggest challenge for any director, new or experienced, big budget or small, film or TV, is making your day, and ensuring you're efficiently getting the footage and performances you need so you don't go over schedule and over budget. This is difficult, but there’s a proven method to keep you on track, while still allowing for inspiration and experimentation on set. It also happens to be the industry standard, and applies to any level of filmmaking - from student short to studio feature. It comes down to identifying what to plan and what to improvise. The truth is the more you plan, the more you’re free to experiment while filming - provided you optimize your time and focus on the right elements.

Let's go deep into how exactly to plan your day so you can do your job on set, stay in control, stay creative, and leave with the best possible film you can make.

Clay Liford is an award winning independent filmmaker and director of photography whose projects have premiered at Sundance Film Festival, SXSW, Munich, AFI Film fest and more. As a director of photography, Clay has shot over twenty-five features, including the SXSW award-winning films ST. NICK and GAYBY. His film credits also include WUSS, EARTHLING, SLASH, and MY MOM SMOKES WEED, a Sundance Film Festival favorite. As an indie filmmaker, editor, and writer, Clay has mastered the art of pre-production and production so that his projects move like clockwork. And as a film production instructor at the University of Texas, Clay has become proficient at teaching his methods for efficiency and artistic self-sufficiency. Now he’s sharing what he knows with the Stage 32 community.

In this intensive and interactive 2-part class, Clay will work closely with you and show you how you can save time and money as a filmmaker by employing strategies and practices to make your day and keep your project moving. Focusing on both pre-production and production, Clay will walk you through how exactly to plan your days on set, address where to place emphasis in your pre-production process, and lay out a specific method for planning shots and scenes, which includes shot lists and top-down lighting plots. Along the way, Clay will provide invaluable handouts and case studies.

 

 

Praise for Clay's Previous Stage 32 Webinars

 

"Excellent - granular and practical, not just theoretical."

-Peter C.

 

"Clay was amazing. Would love to take more classes from him"

-Jacqueline A. 

 

"I was impressed with Clay. He has what feels like a natural gift for teaching from a comfortable and personal level"

-Maeve T.

 

 

What You'll Learn

Session 1: Pre-Production

    • How To Shot List Efficiently, Using Agreed Upon Industry Language (so There’s Never Any Confusion as to What You Want)
    • Access to a Master Menu Of Shot Options/Components, Infinitely Combinable To Create Virtually any Possible Shot - No Matter How Outlandish or Unique - Easily and Accurately
    • How to Get the Lighting You Want Using Simplified Lighting Plots Based on the Simple Concept of “Value Ratios,” Rather Than the Mastery of Niche Technical Knowledge
    • Learn to Optimize And Simplify Technical Communication With Your Key Department Heads
    • Discover What Director “Homework” Is Actually Productive. Don’t Spin Your Wheels!
    • How To Split Your Duties as a Director, and How Much of the Job Truly Is Just Good Team Building.
    • Splitting Your Duties as A Director
    • Q&A with Clay

 

Session 2: Production

  • Operating on Set
    • The step-by-step process to follow in order to maximize your on-set time
    • The method to re-focus you from “chasing the clock” and back onto creative decision making
    • How to work efficiently, rather than quickly (i.e. rushed)
    • How to ensure you still get everything you need when time inevitably runs low
    • How to identify “happy accidents” and other inspirational opportunities that only arise when you’re actually filming.
    • How to maximize the beautifully collaborative aspect of filmmaking
  • Think Like an Editor
    • Minimizing your need for future “pick ups” and additional shooting by getting what you need the first time.
    • What proper “coverage” truly means
    • What every editor wishes directors and producers would deliver
    • How to get the most out of your “shooting ratio”
  • Q&A with Clay Liford

 

WHAT TO EXPECT:

  • This class is designed for intermediate and advanced directors and filmmakers looking to learn how to better cover scenes for a film or television show and plan their day. This is an in-depth, practical, and detailed class with significantly more content than a standard 90-minute webinar.
  • This class will consist of two sessions, both roughly two hours in duration and spaced one day apart from one another. In addition to the presentation-style lessons where Clay will be walking you through various elements of the directing, you will have the opportunity to ask him questions during each session.

About Your Instructor

Clay Liford is an award winning independent filmmaker and director of photography whose projects have premiered at Sundance Film Festival, SXSW, Munich, AFI Film fest and more. As a director of photography, Clay has shot over twenty-five features, including the SXSW award-winning films ST. NICK and GAYBY. His film credits also include WUSS, EARTHLING, SLASH, and MY MOM SMOKES WEED, a Sundance Film Festival favorite. As an indie filmmaker, editor, and writer, Clay has mastered the art of pre-production and production so that his projects move like clockwork. And as a film production instructor at the University of Texas, Clay has become proficient at teaching his methods for efficiency and artistic self-sufficiency. Now he’s sharing what he knows with the Stage 32 community.

Schedule

Session 1: Pre-Production - Monday October 11, 2021, 4pm-6pm PDT

Session 2: Production - Tuesday October 12, 2021, 4pm-6pm PDT

FAQs

Q: What is the format of a class?
A: Stage 32 Next Level Classes are typically 90-minute broadcasts that take place online using a designated software program from Stage 32.

Q: Do I have to be located in a specific location?
A: No, you can participate from the comfort of your own home using your personal computer! If you attend a live online webinar, you will be able to communicate directly with your instructor during the class.

Q: What are the system requirements?
A: You will need to meet the following system requirements in order to run the webinar software: Windows 7 or later Mac OS X 10.9 (Mavericks) or later.
If you have Windows XP, Windows Vista and Mac OS X 10.8 (Mountain Lion): The webinar software does not support these operating systems. If you are running one of those operating systems, please upgrade now in order to be able to view a live class. Upgrade your Windows computer / Upgrade your Mac computer

Q: What if I cannot attend the live class?
A: If you attend a live online class, you will be able to communicate directly with your instructor during the class. If you cannot attend a live class, you will have access to the entire recorded broadcast, including the Q&A. Plus, your instructor will be available via email throughout the lab.

Q: Will I have access to the lab afterward to rewatch?
A: Yes! After the purchase of the lab, you will have on-demand access to the video recording, which you can view for one month after the class is complete.

Questions?

If you have a generic question about Stage 32 education you can take a look at our frequently asked questions section on our help page, or feel free to contact support with any other inquiries you might have.

Other education that may be of interest to you:

The Fundamentals of Directing: Pre-Production, Production, & Post-Production

Payment plans available - contact edu@stage32.com for details 4-PART IN-DEPTH CLASS (OVER 8 HOURS OF EDUCATION) Learn from a director who's worked with Paramount+, Syfy, Vice, and more. Includes Exclusive Handouts Only Available For Those In Clay's Class! There are countless views on the “correct” way to direct, however there are universal fundamentals that all directors can use, whether it’s your first film or your 20th. Learn these fundamentals of directing in this class! In this exclusive Stage 32 class, you’ll learn the fundamental pillars of directing and techniques you need to do the job at a professional level. This includes how to analyze the script and bring in your unique vision, how to build your cast and crew, what technical elements from lensing to lighting you need to know, how to use pre-production for a successful production and, ultimately, your role in the editor’s room. You’ll cover how to collaborate with your cinematographer to define your style, how best work with your actors, and how to strengthen your visual awareness, all while participating in readings, exercises, screenings, and other assignments to sharpen your skills. Guiding you is award-winning director Clay Liford. Clay has written and directed four feature films that have screened at major festivals like SXSW, AFI, and Sundance, and his short film, MY MOM SMOKES WEED, has played at over 40 festivals. He’s also worked with major entertainment studios, networks, and production companies, including Syfy, Paramount+, Vice, and Troma Film. Clay is also sharing with you these exclusive handouts: Example diagrams Director “cheat sheets” for acting and lensing Phrasing for communicating with actors and crew And more By the end of the four intensive sessions with Clay, you will have developed the ability and self-confidence to communicate your vision and translate it from the page to the screen as a director. Don’t miss out on the chance to learn these universal techniques every director needs while shaping your own unique style and vision.

How To Write A Short Film That Gets You Noticed

You may be surprised by JUST how many successful filmmakers today began their career by writing short films. Everyone from Christopher Nolan to Ryan Coogler to Chloe Zhao to Justin Lin have short film writing credits to their name and used those projects to springboard their career. This is how new and untested creatives can prove their mettle, get their name out there and actually get their foot in the door. And you can do this as well. Whether you’re building up your filmmaking career, itching to write the next festival darling or award-worthy short film, or just love the short form format, you too, can master the art of short film writing. There are many reasons and inspirations for writing a short, but shorter doesn’t mean easier to write. One of the great challenges is that many people go into writing a short with the mindset of creating a proof of concept for a feature. While there’s nothing inherently wrong with this, this mindset tends to encourage a few logical fallacies, and in a strange way actually devalues the work. Short films require a fine balance of elegance and story economy. They require an innovative storytelling technique that usually takes years of practice and feedback to master. With the right guidance though, you’ll be able to master this in no time. Clay Liford is an award-winning independent filmmaker and director of photography whose many shorts include the Sundance hit MY MOM SMOKES WEED. His projects have premiered at Sundance Film Festival, SXSW, Munich, AFI Film fest and more. As a director of photography, Clay has shot over twenty-five features, including the SXSW award-winning films ST. NICK and GAYBY. His film credits also include WUSS, EARTHLING, SLASH, and MY MOM SMOKES WEED, a Sundance Film Festival favorite. As an indie filmmaker, editor, and writer, Clay has mastered the art of writing and making both feature length and short films. He is also a film production instructor at the University of Texas, who has become proficient at teaching his methods for efficiency and artistic self-sufficiency. Now he’s sharing what he knows with the Stage 32 community. Clay will take you through his proven and effective approach to writing an effective short films that get you noticed and advance your career. He’ll go over the REAL differences between shorts and features, what every short film needs to succeed, how to think like a director (even if you’re not one), and how to maximize your festival strategy. Most importantly, he’s going to introduce you to the concept of Iconography. You’ll have the opportunity to ask him questions, and by the end of this webinar, you’ll fall in love with this format and walk away with a new perspective and appreciation for the short film format. Clay's guidance will give you confidence to develop your short film and help you succeed in the short film market.   PLUS! Clay provides you with the following handouts: Overview of How to Write a Short Film - Things to Consider & What to Watch Out For Story Structure Diagram Breakdown of Film Roles on a Set Elements of a Lookbook Duties of a Director Suggested Reading List   Testimonials for Clay's Webinar:   "Clay had great energy and pace. He was able to explain things in different ways and with excellent examples." -Magi A.   "Clay didn't sugar coat anything - keeping the short within a tight budget and length is smart strategy & practical. I appreciated his honesty." - Shaan D.    

Making Your Day: How to Complete your Project On Time and On Budget Without Sacrificing Your Art

Time is money. And in the world of indie film, this is undeniably true. The number one expense filmmakers face today isn’t equipment rentals or crew wages. Nor is it crafty or actor day rates. It’s a DAY. And once a day is lost, it’s extremely difficult to get back. Often referred to as “the single biggest budget multiplier,” loss of days while shooting can sink your film if not kept under control. Falling behind just one day quickly leads to losing another and then another, and before you know it you have a runaway production. If you’re contemplating pre-production and production for your independent film or project, carefully managing your days is a priority. Many filmmakers avoid too much pre-planning for fear of losing the creativity and spontaneity that can make their project special, but it doesn’t need to be one or the other. There’s a proven method to keep you on track, while still allowing for inspiration and experimentation on set. It also happens to be the industry standard, and applies to any level of filmmaking - from student short to studio feature. You don’t have to toss the creative baby out with the budgetary bathwater. It comes down to identifying what to plan and what to improvise. The truth is the more you plan, the more you’re free to experiment while filming - provided you optimize your time and focus on the right elements. Clay Liford is an award winning independent filmmaker and director of photography whose projects have premiered at Sundance Film Festival, SXSW, Munich, AFI Film fest and more. As a director of photography, Clay has shot over twenty-five features, including the SXSW award-winning films ST. NICK and GAYBY. His film credits also include WUSS, EARTHLING, SLASH, and MY MOM SMOKES WEED, a Sundance Film Festival favorite. As an indie filmmaker, editor, and writer, Clay has mastered the art of pre-production and production so that his projects move like clockwork. And as a film production instructor at the University of Texas, Clay has become proficient at teaching his methods for efficiency and artistic self-sufficiency. Now he’s sharing what he knows with the Stage 32 community. Clay will lay out how you can save time and money as a filmmaker by employing strategies and practices to make your day and keep your project moving. Not only will Clay address where to place emphasis in your pre-production process, but he’ll also lay out a specific method for planning shots and scenes, which includes shot lists and top-down lighting plots. These methods are optimized so that you make your day without losing a beat or turning it into a budgetary bean-counter. He’ll then round out the webinar with a “trouble-shooting” guide that’s easy to understand, and applicable to the vast majority of scheduling issues that often arise on set.   Clay's guide will give you confidence when it comes to time management so you can focus on what really matters in putting together a project you can be proud of.

Your Step By Step Guide to Producing Your Ultra Low Budget Film

You have a great feature film idea and story to tell but you don't think you have the money to produce your movie. However, that really shouldn't stop you from making your film. The industry is filled with filmmakers who broke in with movies made on a shoe strong budget that resonated with decision makers, reps and audiences alike. In this exclusive Stage 32 webinar, you’ll learn how you can produce a high-quality film on an ultra-low budget, and the tools you need to make it happen. You’ll find out how to pick the perfect project and identify what you need to successfully produce it, all on a micro-budget. You’ll also find out what to do once you finish making your film, with tools to find distribution so that audiences can see your movie. Showing you how it’s all done is producer and unit production manager Aymie Majerski, the founder and CEO of LotusShark. She’s produced low-budget indies such as SANTA’S PROMISE, HEALING RIVER, NOTZILLA, 4192: THE CROWNING OF THE HIT KING, and 7 BELOW. In addition to film projects, Aymie and her team at LotusShark produce digital content for Showtime, Spotify, HBO, YouTube Originals, the OTR International Film Festival, and more. Aymie will provide you with essential information she’s learned over her many years of experience producing low-budget features, including: Choosing the right story Perfecting your script for a low-budget shoot Building your budget from pre-production through post Sourcing your funding Managing your team Locking locations Casting your film Production insurance needs How to shoot fast and safely Finding distribution And examples of pre-production checklists You can't let fear, budget or industry access hold you back from making the film that can change the trajectory of your career. But with this fantastic Stage 32 webinar, you can gain the tools that you need to make your idea into a finished film without a lot of money at your disposal. It's all about being creative! “Aymie not only knows her stuff because she has been in the trenches and uses real world examples but she does so in a fun and approachable way and truly cares and wants to help other filmmakers” Sara T.

Advanced Level Finance Class: How to Finance and Produce a Feature Film for a Streamer Such as Netflix, Amazon or Hulu

    We are seeing more and more members of the Stage 32 getting fully-funded agreements from streamers like Netflix, Amazon and Hulu to create original content. In situations like this, traditional financing and distribution schemes vary and you, as a producer or filmmaker, need to understand how to finance and produce your film in the best way in order to deliver it to the streamer on time and on budget.  This advanced level financing class is geared towards independent producers who are about to, or have already, received a distribution agreement (i.e., Minimum Guarantee) offer for their film ahead of production.  You will learn some valuable tools on how to monetize the offer towards financing the budget of the film. You will learn how to work with third party lenders to monetize the distribution agreement and the pitfalls to look out for when working with lenders in financing a distribution agreement. To help you navigate this is Viviana Zarragoitia who is the Vice President of Three Point Capital, one of the entertainment industry's top financiers that specializes in senior lending on film and television projects. Through Three Point, Viviana closes the financing on every film that the company is involved in. She has been involved in the financing of over 100 independent films, and worked with such producers as Cassian Elwes (DALLAS BUYERS CLUB), Rob Barnum (MARGIN CALL), Anthony Bregman (ETERNAL SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS MIND), James Schamus (BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN), Aaron Gilbert (JOKER), Kimberly Steward (MANCHESTER BY THE SEA), Nicolas Chartier (THE HURT LOCKER) and Kevin Frakes (HEREDITARY), among others. Before Three Point Capital, Viviana worked in accounting at Millennium Films and Bold Films, as well as in the finance division of Lionsgate, where she oversaw the preparation of multi-million dollar film and television distribution deals. Viviana has seen it all when it comes to film financing and knows intimately well how films find success at all budget levels. She will make sure you feel confident about your streamer deal and deliver your film in line with what a streamer is looking for.  

Stage 32 Screenwriting Lab: Outline & Structure Your Genre Feature Screenplay with Expert Guidance Over 8 Weeks

*12 Spots Available - 2 spots remain*     Do you have a thriller, sci-fi, fantasy, or horror feature you’re working on? Or maybe you’ve been thinking about writing in this space, but aren’t sure where or how to get started? This is a persistently hot genre; but currently, there is a demand for new writers in this space for features that can be done under $15MM. It’s a really exciting time to break into the grounded genre space, but first it's important that you have the right script and know what it takes to sell a project in this genre.  David Chien is a literary manager at Art/Work Entertainment whose clients include the writers of ARRIVAL, BIRD BOX, LIGHTS OUT, and THE THING. They have also had clients work for Netflix, The CW, Cinemax, CBS, NBC, FX, Starz, Nickelodeon, EPIX, and TBS, to name a few. For over ten years David has helped countless writers improve their scripts, get staffed on series, and pitch and sell their scripts to major executives. You will work one-on-one with David over 8 weeks as he guides you through identifying, developing, and structuring your own genre screenplay. This is an incredible opportunity to work closely with someone who knows how to pull great sellable stories out of his clients. He’ll work closely with you on drafting the right concept, building an outline, preparing a verbal pitch, and writing engaging character descriptions. You will wrap up this eight-week lab with fresh ideas and most importantly a solid and thorough blueprint to write a great genre script—one that’ll surely make decision makers notice you.   Throughout the course of this exclusive online lab, you will have direct access to David as a mentor by email and via video conferencing.     Praise for David's Previous Stage 32 Feature Lab:   "David is definitely some kind of genius at what he does. He is able to get to the plot holes and potential problematic issues of a script within seconds. All while he’s able to come up with suggestions and ideas about the how and why things aren’t working and at he same time making observations about the how, what and why might work instead. I’ve never seen anyone able to do this as quickly, or as well as, David can. It’s really quite extraordinary!" - Sarah T.   "I really enjoyed David's class. He was not another "industry professional" who just liked everything he heard and told everyone they were great. He really put us through our paces; made us ask ourselves tough questions. At the end of the course, I've got a solid outline for a unique story and a great starting place for the actual script writing- which is exactly what I hoped for." - Christopher G.

register for stage 32 Register / Log In