5 Positive Things About Film Industry Work We Should Appreciate

5 Positive Things About Film Industry Work We Should Appreciate
Design by Judy Moore in Canva
Share this


Film industry work has been getting a bad rap lately, probably deservedly so.  Recent IATSE negotiations have inspired many union members to tell their stories about some brutal conditions on set.  Then there’s the tragic accidental shooting death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of the low-budget film Rust. 

People following these stories may wonder why anyone would ever want to work in the film industry.

There are still enough positive things about film industry work that keeps us engaged and glad to be working in this business for many of us who work in it.  It’s not perfect, but what is?

Here are five positive things about film industry work that I believe are worth appreciating:

  1. We work in a creative environment.

Working in a creative environment is a big draw for many of us who enter the industry.  We want to work around creative people and be a part of the creative process of making the entertainment we all consume.

Filmmaking is interesting work, and I’ve never stopped learning new things in all my years of working on set.  Technology is constantly changing, and the industry is evolving.

Virtual production is revolutionizing filmmaking.  Drone shots that would have required the use of a helicopter in the past are now commonplace.  We get to collaborate with others in this creative endeavor.

Yes, the hours are long, and some days are incredibly challenging, but I’ve found it much more interesting than sitting in an office cubicle all day.

  1. We can choose the types of jobs we want to work on.

There are many different categories of work within the film industry.  Live television, single-camera episodic TV, sitcoms, feature films, limited TV series, commercials, and reality TV are some of the types of shows we can work on in the industry.

No one is limited to just one genre.  I’ve worked on all of the above, except for reality TV.

Anyone working in the industry has many career options.  We only need to position ourselves where we want to be and start making the contacts we need to work in the area of the industry we desire.

That’s where networking comes in.  If we’re constantly keeping up with contacts and making new ones, jobs will come our way.

  1. Each day is different.

One of my favorite things about film industry work is that each day is different.  We work in a variety of locations with varying groups of people.  We work in beautiful places and gritty ones we’d otherwise never go near.

Anyone with a temperament that can smoothly adapt to new situations will appreciate this location diversity.

Adventurous types who aren’t afraid of change and enjoy a challenge can thrive in the film industry.  Just be ready for anything.

  1. We can go from job to job.

When I was starting out, some of my non-industry friends couldn’t imagine why I’d want to work in an industry where I would go from job to job.  To me, that was a significant draw.

If we don’t like the job we’re on, we can always find another.  In our industry, we all eventually leave jobs for something better.  It’s part of being a freelancer.

No job lasts forever, which is a good thing.  If we don’t like the show we’re on or the people we’re working with, the job will eventually end, or we’ll find something better and move on.

It’s our responsibility to make the strategic decisions in our careers that put us where we want to be.  That’s the difference between a career and a mere series of jobs.

  1. There are more diversity and opportunities for women and minorities than in the past.

For decades, few women and minorities were making inroads into the upper echelons of the industry.  That’s changed significantly, especially in the directing category.

The film industry is much more inclusive than it used to be.  Today’s viewers are demanding more diverse shows, and that extends to the people behind the camera who make the product.  And shows that don’t measure up will be called out.

The industry is by no means perfect in terms of inclusion, but racial diversity, LGBTQ characters, and people with disabilities now appear regularly on screen.  It’s a vast improvement over the landscape that existed even ten years ago.

Doors are opening.  It’s up to us to charge through them.


Those are a few of the positive things I appreciate about film industry work.  Our industry has its share of negatives, but creative, adventurous types can thrive in it.

Crew members today are not hesitating to demand their unions stand up for a safer workplace and better working conditions.

Social media such as the Instagram account @ia_stories has given IATSE members a forum to air grievances about the industry, and that’s a positive step towards making the industry better for those of us who work in it.

If nothing else, it’s made producers aware of conditions on set they weren’t aware of before.  Hopefully, recent events in our industry will inspire some changes for the better.

That will surely be something for all of us to appreciate.



Share this