I’m Peter D. Marshall and I created this film directing blog in 2007 as an online movie making resource center for Independent Filmmakers like yourself.

Peter D. Marshall

(As of November 24, 2625 film making posts have been published on this blog!)

For over 40 years I’ve worked (and survived) in the Film and TV industry as a Film Director, Television Producer, First Assistant Director and Creative Consultant. (See IMDb Credits.)

In 1999, I started my website, ActionCutPrint which has grown into a major film directing resource for Independent Filmmakers featuring online movie making courses, film directing articles, film and television books and filmmaking workshops.

In 2000, I started publishing my free monthly film making ezine, The Director’s Chair which is read by over 6000 filmmakers in 105 countries around the world. (You can read 158 back issues here.)

To fulfill my goal of mentoring and teaching, I developed several filmmaking workshops that I have presented over the past 19 years (Singapore, Dubai, Haiti, Vancouver, Toronto, Calgary, Regina.) I am also a directing instructor for Raindance Canada and the Vancouver Film School.

I also offer Film Directing Coaching services via Skype. So why hire me as your film directing coach? Along with my international teaching experiences and my 40 years of professional filmmaking experience (as a TV Director and Feature 1st AD), I feel I have the necessary qualifications to help you achieve your dreams of being a creative and successful independent film director.

So if you want to keep up to date on the latest Online film and television resources, please Bookmark this Page Now or Subscribe to this blog to read daily film making articles written by myself and other film makers from around the world.

Contact Peter D. Marshall

The feature article in this month’s issue of The Director’s Chair is called “The Business of Film: 5 short articles I’ve written about surviving in the film and TV business.”

SUBSCRIBE to the current issue of “The Director’s Chair” and get two free bonuses: (1) Day One (41 pages) of my 261 page Online film directing audio course, “The Art and Craft of the Director Audio Seminar” and (2) the first 30 pages of my 165 page “Script Breakdown and Film Scheduling Online Course For Independent Filmmakers.”

by Pawe Pawlikowski.


Recently, someone from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in Los Angeles asked Ewa Puszczynska, Ida’s Polish producer, to send them the script of our film so they could deposit it in their core library collection. Ewa rang me, worried: what exactly should she send them? She had 23 permutations of the script on her files. Surely she couldn’t send them the official script we raised the money on. It was nothing like the film that ended up on the screen. Maybe we could simply send a transcript of the finished film? But that would amount to no more than 30 pages – probably not much use to the Academy, either.

The accepted logic of most film producers is this: you buy a book or an idea, then hire a screenwriter – in Britain, usually a converted playwright – who then turns it into a three-act structure, puts in some twists and lots of dialogue, and hands you a 90-page script. Next, you hire a director, who brings in his “vision”, attracts some cool actors, and breaks scenes into shots; and then you get a DP who photographs the thing as artfully as the story will allow. Then comes the editor to speed things up or slow them down, cover up holes, and sort out loose ends. The product at the end is more or less what was planned at the start – and with the right cast, soundtrack, journalistic hook and promotion it should make money.

Read the rest of this article from The Guardian.

Do you need a Film Directing Coach? If actors, singers and athletes have private coaches, why not Film Directors? If you would like help to achieve your dreams of being a creative and successful independent film director, please check out my Film Directing Coach services via Skype.


Happy 72nd Birthday to Martin Scorsese! What Is His BEST Movie?

November 24, 2014

by Brian Finamore. Martin Charles Scorsese is 72 years young, and since he belongs to the Mt. Rushmore of all time Hollywood filmmakers, I thought I would share my list of his best narrative films. Part of the New Hollywood wave of filmmaking, he is widely regarded as one of the most significant and influential […]

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UnderWire: Supporting Women Filmmakers

November 23, 2014

by Gabriella Apicella. On Tuesday 11 November, the fifth UnderWire Festival will open at The Yard in Hackney Wick. Founded by Gemma Mitchell and myself in 2010 with the aim to foreground female filmmaking talent, the opening night’s screenings are always of the XX Award Category. Unique to UnderWire, films selected for this award are […]

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Explore Paul Thomas Anderson’s Research For ‘There Will Be Blood’

November 22, 2014

by Jordan Raup. As the credits will show, the main inspiration behind There Will Be Blood was (at least the beginning of) Upton Sinclair‘s novel Oil!, which from Paul Thomas Anderson expanded upon its themes and crafted his own characters of Daniel Plainview and Eli Sunday. However, that was far from the only influence the director had. […]

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How Passion Can Ruin A Filmmaker’s Career

November 21, 2014

by Elliott Grove. Call it the paradox of filmmaking: The very thing it takes to make movies often ends up destroying filmmakers and their careers. I started Raindance in 1992 when many of the filmmakers submitting to this year’s film festival were still in nappies.There is a consistent theme amongst the approximately 100,000 filmmakers who […]

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VIDEO: Recreating Interstellar’s Black Hole

November 20, 2014

by Joey Shanks. “How ever sophisticated your CGI is,” says Christopher Nolan, ” if it’s been created from no physical elements and you haven’t shot anything with the camera, it’s going to stand out.” A notable proponent of practical effects, Nolan shot his latest extravaganza Interstellar without a single green screen. In this new episode of Shanks […]

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Filmmaking in virtual reality

November 19, 2014

by Clyde DeSouza. They say you shouldn’t hijack the head-tracking data stream of the Oculus Rift; visuals should not be separated from the human vestibular system…but rules were meant to be broken. Why? Because there’s so much more to VR than gaming. This is not to say games aren’t becoming movies! I found myself strangely […]

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Filmmakers: Here’s 12 Tips for Directing Your First Feature Film

November 18, 2014

by Justin Schwarz. Six year ago, I decided to make a comedy about the paradox of family – how it can simultaneously be our source of strength and the root of all our problems, and for better or worse, it’s forever. This week my debut feature film, “The Discoverers,” rolls out on VOD and DVD […]

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8 Female Cinematographers You Should Know About

November 17, 2014

by Paula Bernstein. The statistics are disheartening. In the last five years, women accounted for just 3% of the cinematographers among the 250 top-grossing films. No female DP has ever been nominated for an Academy Award. We recently published a first-person story from Elle Schneider, director, cinematographer and co-founder of the Digital Bolex cinema camera, in which […]

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How Interstellar completes Christopher Nolan’s personal filmmaking trilogy

November 16, 2014

by Ryan Lambie. It’s often said that filmmaking is a battle between art and commerce. In his career so far, British director Christopher Nolan has managed to strike a balance between the two better than just about any filmmaker currently working. Look at how cleanly Nolan made the transition from independent moviemaking to the Hollywood […]

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