A director is not only the main author at the heart of the creative process of an audiovisual work, but also a highly skilled independent professional technician, responsible for overseeing every facet of its realisation. It is the director who, as creative leader, brings a singular vision to a film, a vision that informs the original idea and continues right through the production process.
Directors are storytellers.
Making captivating stories, in all their diverse subjects and forms, is a craft that requires a very specific skillset. Alongside their co-authors, screenwriters and composers, screen directors develop the script into a visual story, but it is their sole responsibility to direct the camera and actors to visualise the screenplay. With the moving images captured, screen directors then commission music and supervise the edit, sound design and visual effects to create and then promote the finished audio visual work – the director’s commitment of time and energy often spans several years.
To build a sustainable professional career the director’s creative contribution to the audiovisual industry must be properly rewarded. The law of copyright appropriately recognises screen directors’ authorship as fundamental to the creative process.
Directors stand at the forefront of technological changes and new media – and in many case leading the technological revolution. They have embraced the changes to camera technology, editing, and the possibilities of new distribution through internet platforms. They have used new digital technology to operate in ways that are leaner and faster, often taking the camera to places it hasn’t been seen before, telling new kinds of stories in different ways, in the candid tradition of “the man with the moving camera”. And their creative leadership has been decisive in the digital effects (CGI) revolution, with all the possibilities for integrating live action and computer-generated imagery.
Recently, directors had to adjust to shooting under the COVID-19 pandemic, respecting the safety guidelines while delivering quality work, demonstrating once again the resilience and necessity of filmmaking and filmmakers for culture and our humanity in times of crisis. Especially in moments such as this, the creative leadership of directors must be promoted and respected, so that our culture continues to be enriched with quality audiovisual works reflecting our realities and the challenges to our humanity while offering perspectives on how to tackle the future.