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Best Filmmaking Books

Recommendations from 38 articles, Maria Sharapova, Joe Rogan, Stephen King and 59 others.
Best Filmmaking Books
98 books on the list
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Rebel without a Crew book cover
Rebel without a Crew
Or How a 23-Year-Old Filmmaker With $7,000 Became a Hollywood Player
Robert Rodriguez - 1996-09-01 (first published in 1995)
Goodreads Rating
Discover the inspiring story of a renegade filmmaker who created a masterpiece on a shoestring budget in Rebel Without a Crew. In this guide, Robert Rodriguez shares his revolutionary techniques for making movies, including the strategies he used to create his debut film, El Mariachi. This book is a must-read for anyone with a passion for filmmaking and a desire to learn independent production, direction, and screenwriting. Included in the appendix is 'The Ten Minute Film Course,' a comprehensive guide that teaches you how to save thousands of dollars on film school and make your movie dreams a reality.
Recommended by
Edgar Wright
In the Blink of an Eye book cover
In the Blink of an Eye
A Perspective on Film Editing, 2nd Edition
Walter Murch - 2001-08-01 (first published in 1995)
Goodreads Rating
An expert essay on the art of film editing, exploring the aesthetics and practical concerns that make cuts work. The author offers unique insights on continuity, emotions, and technology in the second edition, making it an invaluable resource for film enthusiasts and professionals alike.
On Directing Film book cover
On Directing Film
David Mamet - 1992-01-01 (first published in 1991)
Goodreads Rating
Master the art of visual storytelling with a witty and practical guide by David Mamet. Based on his film classes at Columbia University, Mamet emphasizes the power of uninflected images and urges filmmakers to tell their stories through simple shots. He draws inspiration from Russian masters to present his ideas on directing, writing, and acting in an enlightening and engaging way. Get ready to revolutionize your approach to filmmaking with Mamet's insightful advice.
Recommended by
Ted Hope
Making Movies book cover
Making Movies
Sidney Lumet - 1996-03-19 (first published in 1995)
Goodreads Rating
Learn the secrets of the art, craft, and business of making movies from one of the most acclaimed directors in America. With 40 years of experience and movies like Long Day's Journey Into Night and The Verdict under his belt, this professional memoir and definitive guide is the perfect resource for anyone interested in the painstaking labor behind two hours of screen magic.
Hitchcock book cover
Francois Truffaut - 1985-10-02 (first published in 1966)
Goodreads Rating
Explore the art, interests, and humor of Alfred Hitchcock as told through the eyes of fellow cinematic master Francois Truffaut. In this book-length interview, the two delve into each of Hitchcock's films, providing a storehouse of insight, technical know-how, and even humor. Originally published in 1967 and later revised to include Hitchcock's final years, this book is a must-read for any lover of film.
Cinematography book cover
Theory and Practice
Blain Brown - 2002-10-09
Goodreads Rating
Learn about the latest tools, techniques, and technology that have revolutionized the art and craft of telling stories visually in the world of cinematography. Whether you are a student of filmmaking, a seasoned professional, or just breaking into the business, Cinematography: Theory and Practice covers both the artistry and craftsmanship of cinematography and visual storytelling. Explore topics such as cameras and digital sensors, exposure techniques for film and video, color, image control and grading, film lighting, and more with this essential guide from author and filmmaker Blain Brown.
The Filmmaker's Handbook book cover
The Filmmaker's Handbook
Steven Ascher - 1999-03-01 (first published in 1984)
Goodreads Rating
A comprehensive and essential guide to all aspects of video and film production, The Filmmaker's Handbook is the go-to resource for professionals, students, and novices alike. Covering everything from shooting techniques with various cameras to digital editing and blending arts, this "bible" of production and distribution is now updated with the latest advancements. This guide also includes indispensable tips on funding, producing, and showcasing your creations in theaters, on TV, and on the web.
Directing Actors book cover
Directing Actors
Creating Memorable Performances for Film & Television
Judith Weston - 1996-01-25
Goodreads Rating
Learn the art of directing actors from an internationally-renowned coach with this insightful book. Discover how to create good performances, what actors want from a director, common mistakes directors make, effective script analysis and preparation, and more. Gain valuable insights into the important director/actor relationship and take your directing skills to the next level.
Recommended by
Ava DuVernay
Something Like An Autobiography book cover
Something Like An Autobiography
Akira Kurosawa - 1983-05-12 (first published in 1981)
Goodreads Rating
This insightful book provides an inside look at the artistry of film director Akira Kurosawa. It's a must-read for fans of his movies and budding directors alike. Kurosawa discusses topics such as the importance of a good script, effective scriptwriting, directing actors, camera placement, and the value of literature in shaping one's creativity. This book is a joy to read and an indispensable resource for understanding the mind of a master filmmaker.
Master Shots book cover
Master Shots
100 Advanced Camera Techniques to Get An Expensive Look on your Low Budget Movie
Christopher Kenworthy - 2009-01-01
Goodreads Rating
Learn how to execute complex and original film shots on any budget with Master Shots. This book teaches filmmakers powerful techniques to create strong, standout styles using master shots and well-executed moves. Take the pressure off last-minute compromises and make every shot a knockout with the techniques in this book. Illustrated with sample shots from great feature films and computer-generated diagrams, Master Shots is a must-have for any aspiring filmmaker.
Shooting to Kill by Christine Vachon
Easy Riders, Raging Bulls by Peter Biskind
Directing by Michael Rabiger
Film Directing Shot by Shot by Steven D. Katz
Story by Robert McKee
The Complete Film Production Handbook by Eve Light Honthaner
Adventures in the Screen Trade by William Goldman
The Five C's of Cinematography by Joseph V Mascelli
The Filmmaker's Eye by Gustavo Mercado
The Technique of Film and Video Editing by Ken Dancyger
How to Shoot Video That Doesn't Suck by Steve Stockman
The Writers Journey by Christopher Vogler
On Film-making by Alexander MacKendrick
Guillermo del Toro Cabinet of Curiosities by Guillermo del Toro
Master Shots Volume 2 by Christopher Kenworthy
Color Correction Handbook by Alexis van Hurkman
Film Lighting by Kris Malkiewicz
Painting With Light by John Alton
The Pocket Lawyer for Filmmakers by Thomas A. Crowell Esq.
If It's Purple, Someone's Gonna Die by Patti Bellantoni
Down and Dirty Pictures by Peter Biskind
Hello, He Lied & Other Tales from the Hollywood Trenches by Lynda Obst
Screenplay by Syd Field
The Conversations by Michael Ondaatje
The Hollywood Standard by Christopher Riley
Moviemakers' Master Class by Laurent Tirard
Master Shots Vol 3 by Christopher Kenworthy
The Reel Truth by Reed Martin
The Big Picture by Tom Reilly
Cutting Rhythms by Karen Pearlman
Writing for the Cut by Greg Loftin
The Guide to Managing Postproduction for Film, TV, and Digital Distribution by Barbara Clark
The Shut Up and Shoot Documentary Guide by Anthony Q. Artis
Film & Video Budgets by Deke Simon
The DSLR Filmmaker's Handbook by Barry Andersson
Filmmaking For Dummies 2E by Bryan Michael Stoller
The Philosophy of the Coen Brothers by Mark T. Conard
Shaking the Money Tree by Morrie Warshawski
On Writing by Stephen King
Sculpting in Time by Andrey Tarkovsky
The Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell
The Magic Lantern by Ingmar Bergman
Who the Devil Made It by Peter Bogdanovich
Notes on Directing by Frank Hauser
Producer to Producer by Maureen Ryan
Set Lighting Technician's Handbook by Harry Box
Kazan on Directing by Elia Kazan
From Reel to Deal by Dov S-S Simens
Spike Lee's Gotta Have It by Spike Lee
The Oxford History of World Cinema by Geoffrey Nowell-Smith
The Grip Book by Michael G. Uva
The Independent Film Producer’s Survival Guide by Gunnargunnar Ericksonerickson
Producing with Passion by Dorothy Fadiman, Levelle Tony
The Movie Business by Kelly Crabb
MasterShots Vol 1 by Christopher Kenworthy
Produce Your Own Damn Movie! by Lloyd Kaufman
The Art of Immersion by Frank Rose
In Her Voice by Melissa Silverstein
Poetics by Aristotle
The Declaration of Independent Filmmaking by Mark Polish
How to Shoot a Feature Film for Under $10,000 by Bret Stern
Run Towards the Danger by Sarah Polley
City on Fire by Don Winslow
Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell
Pictures at a Revolution by Mark Harris
Sellout by Dan Ozzi
A Million Miles in a Thousand Years by Donald Miller
Sea of Tranquility by Emily St. John Mandel
Brotherhood by Mike Chen
When I Stop Talking, You'll Know I'm Dead by Jerry Weintraub
Thinking with Type by Ellen Lupton
The Sense of Style by Steven Pinker
Herzog on Herzog by Paul Cronin
Photographers Eye by Michael Freeman
The Hero's Journey by Joseph Campbell
Ballpark by Paul Goldberger
Movies by Shea Serrano
Audition by Michael Shurtleff
All You Need to Know About the Music Business by Donald S. Passman
The Man Who Fell to Earth by Walter Tevis
Think Outside the Box Office by Jon Reiss
The Total Film-Maker by Jerry Lewis
A Killer Life by Christine Vachon
The Park Bench by Christophe Chaboute
Parasite by Bong Joon Ho
Absolute Pandemonium by Brian Blessed
The Screenwriter's Bible by David Trottier