Podcasts are such an incredible resource for gaining insights into different aspects of the film industry. The industry intricacies are many, from the different departments to the on-set language, and of course what you need to do (or not) to prepare for and get the opportunities you’re looking for. The following podcasts are ones that I love to listen to. They range from acting to writing, and low-budget filmmaking to big-budget commercial directing.
I love film. Vulnerably so. Storytelling is magic. I’ll weep about it any day. Anyway, here are some of my favorite informative podcasts about the filmmaking industry.
The A24 Podcast
As a massive fan of A24 projects in general, it’s no surprise that I’m very into their podcast as well. It’s run kind of like Interview magazine, in the sense that different people in the industry are paired up for the episode. No host. Different podcast every time.
Sometimes the people paired up are people who worked on a project together—like Daniel Radcliff, Daniel Kwan, and Daniel Scheinert, AKA the Daniel’s, who worked together on the movie Swiss Army Man. While other times it’s people who have other things in common, like where they’re from—Simon Rex and Angus, actors from the bay area.
These conversations are so good that they kind of break my heart and inspire me at the same time—overall these people seem to be doing what they love. Like fully living it. If there’s one thing I would like to accomplish in this lifetime it’s feeling fully self-actualized, and for me, a lot of that has to do with art.
Until I reach the point in my life where I’m working on an A24 film I can cherish a comment I got on a dating app that said: “It’s as if A24 were a beautiful woman.” I’m not sure why he said that but I WILL TAKE IT.
On the Page Podcast
Pilar Alessandra is a screenwriting consultant and has a TV writing program called On the Page. On her podcast (of the same name), she welcomes guests, many of which are professional screenwriters that have worked with her or attended one of her workshops.
Pilar’s guests discuss their process for writing and storytelling, as well as their journeys to how they got where they are. Each of these journeys is different and sometimes really speaks to the magic of putting yourself out there (repeatedly) and what can happen when you do.
I really appreciate how different many of the stories are. In entertainment, there isn’t always one single route to take to get somewhere, which can make things feel elusive and confusing, but it also means that there’s room for chance, opportunity, the stars aligning at just the right moment to propel your life down a beautiful new path—whatever you want to call it.
Audrey Helps Actors
I love this podcast. Audrey is a working actor who is fully transparent, realistic, and motivating in the way she talks about the industry, its intricacies, and the hustle to stay in it. She invites guests on like major casting directors and people who really demystify aspects of the process. She also created the Self Tape May challenge (you may have seen it on Instagram), which is just one example of how she encourages advocating for your own career.
I still carry some fears around the industry of acting if I’m being honest. It might have something to do with the fact that I landed in L.A. at the unripe age of 22, pre #metoo movement, spent too much time with the teaching methods that didn’t click, and had my fair share of humiliating moments and bizarre manipulations while I was trying to grow as an artist and as a person. I think it’s time to let all of that go, particularly because none of that not-good stuff has ever happened on set. My actual acting experiences have actually been wonderful.
The point is that, duh, it doesn’t have to be that way.
When I listen to Audrey’s podcast that is obvious. It’s a business. With options and room for boundaries like any other industry. With acting it’s easy to feel replaceable, or lucky to get a chance—which can make standing up for yourself and advocating for your career feel challenging. Audrey calls all that out.
It’s important to listen to the experiences of people who are actively working the industry and championing other people to work in it as well. And not just working but making a living. Thank you Audrey for doing you!
Show Don’t Tell: Micro-Budget Filmmaking
Filmmaker Noam Kroll hosts this podcast and welcomes guests that talk about their own projects and careers. These often feature lots of helpful tips and tricks for anyone trying to make movies on a budget or outside of the main studio system.
This podcast has been around for a while, so there are a lot of episodes to choose from on topics like making a first feature film, shooting feature films without any crew, and getting distribution for a movie (or why you might decide not to.)
Each of these unique stories is inspirational in different ways. I’ve made a few short films and when I go to make my first feature I’d like to make it possible to shoot on a very low budget so that it will be completed regardless of whether I’m able to attain funding. I’d be thrilled to get it, obviously, but I don’t want to sit around and wait in the meantime. I want to make. This podcast and the stories on it show how doable that goal really is.
Just Shoot It
Directors Matt Enlow and Oren Kaplan host the Just Shoot It podcast and often host other industry guests. This podcast covers a variety of topics related to filmmaking, many from the perspective of the director—both in narrative and commercial content.
They answer a lot of questions that people might have about how to become a working director, as well as share details about day-to-day aspects like creating pitches, what it’s like winning or losing those pitches, and everything that can happen once you get on set. They’re quite open in their shares and have tons of valuable insights about working as a filmmaker.
Do you have other favorite podcasts about the filmmaking industry? Let me know!