A guide to being a producer
When California based Aleisha Gore isn’t writing, directing or producing, you can find her dabbling in a bit of acting. Taking a break from promotion for her latest film Chocolate is Better Than Sex, Aleisha gives us an insight into the role of the producer, sharing tips and advice for those wanting to make it…
How did you become a producer?
As a kid, I always wrote and while I always wanted to be a writer, I didn't think about producing until I began acting at a playhouse. I then started writing and producing my own plays. I was lucky enough to make the connection right away that if I'm to create something, I was going to create all the way. So from then on, I produced one act plays, short films, music videos, public service announcements, and industrials.
What are the main challenges of your role?
Self-doubt. I know everyone has it, but for some it's more powerful and for others, more debilitating. It can make me lazy, make me procrastinate and can make me lose an opportunity. So the reality is, one must push through the self-doubt no matter what.
Don't give something so much importance that you lose sight of what you want most. Sometimes learning about something I'm not familiar enough with or I don't have experience in, makes all the difference in the world. And sometimes you just have to jump in.
What’s the best part of your job?
Production is my absolute favorite part of the job. But spiritually, making the connections with people who I will work with (sometimes for long periods of time and sometimes over and over again) and striking lifelong friendships is a great part of the job. And it feels good when what I create is considered important by others.
What key skills do you need to become a producer?
I’d recommend the following to become a good producer:
• Get education in any film school whether it be a city college or an art school.
• Read a lot about the different skills required.
• Then DO, DO, DO.
• Experience is key, so make sure you get experience in as many posts in a production as possible. You could first become a PA and do the best you possibly can for your boss.
• Work hard and think logically.
• Be a true asset to the entire team.
• Know what you want to get out of people.
And remember be kind to your cast and crew. Kindness goes a long way to making a great film.
What advice would you give to someone wanting to become a producer?
Go and produce something. If you can't go to film school, read a bunch of books on it first. I have a few on my site I’d recommend. Also plan, plan, plan, and go through the hard knocks. And finish what you start, no matter what. Even with a short film that might never see the light of day because it's so bad, finish it, and you will at least see that you’ve made something, then learn from the mistakes and start again. I’d then say put your work out there and do it again. Each time you will learn and do something better.
What’s the most challenging job you’ve ever worked on?
Currently I'm working on the most challenging one, my film. Because the consensus right now is that the economy sucks, people tend to be stuck mentally in that rut, where they believe it and then make it so. So I have to get people out of that thinking pattern, and get people on board with me on the funding of my feature. Come hell or high water, I'm making the film, so the only question is: who's going to break out of their comfort zone and hit this challenge head on with me?
What single item could you not live without if filming abroad?
My Kangen water, lol. But seriously, everything will depend upon great planning. My advice when it comes to filming in a foreign country would be:
• Do your research.
• Get to know the area very well.
• Meet with the film commission every chance you get.
• Know what can and can’t be brought into the country.
• And in general, be smart, and be safe.
KFTV would like to thank Aleisha for her insight and industry expertise. To find out more about her work, please visit her profile on our website.