Characteristics are the things that make up a specialism while context is the background surrounding it.
My chosen specialism for this project is directing, in particular the working with actors side of things.
To direct a film you have to be able to clearly envision it in your head so that you know what you want. you have to be a good team player with the ability to get the best out of people in the role of a leader. You must have a respect for your craft and the craft of all those around you so for the the technical side of directing I believe a basic knowledge of all aspects are important as this will help yo to know what is possible and what could be pushed to new boundary’s. To direct you must be able to thoroughly read the script then use your understanding of shot types to make a shot list which will aid you in communicating the films look to others.
The characteristics of a director list from http://filmschools.com/resources/top-10-qualities-of-a-great-filmmaker goes like this:
Great filmmakers must have a strong sense of authority. They are responsible for leading a team to create an outstanding finished product and must command the team to ensure they are working at their best.
Great filmmakers must have excellent communication skills. They must be able to clearly articulate what their production goals are and be able to work with all team members to accomplish that goal.
They must be very creative, and able to generate ideas for stories, backgrounds, music, and other elements involved in a film production.
Great filmmakers must be able to make firm decisions and stick to them to help ensure production stays on track.
A great filmmaker has a tremendous sense of drive and ambition. He or she is willing to do whatever it takes to rise to the top of the industry and make great films.
- Grace Under Pressure
Great filmmakers are able to handle pressure well. They understand that complications will arise during the filmmaking process and are able to handle the stress.
- Open Minded
Great filmmakers are open-minded to changes in their ideas. They accept input readily and consider other points of view without judgment.
- Problem Solving
Great filmmakers can quickly address problems that arise during production. They are able to identify problems and figure out the best way to fix them.
- Technologically Savvy
A great filmmaker is familiar with many, if not all, of the technological elements that are involved in the film making process, and has a grasp on what is feasible and what is not.
Great filmmakers have terrific vision and can see the film from its conception through to its final product. They never lose sight of the ultimate goal.
Authority ensures that I am getting the best out of your cast and crew and means that you are going to do your best to keep them happy whilst ensuring that they are working all out towards your vision. Even though in industry this can mean having them work grueling hours in many conditions a good director should be able to use there authority to keep the team motivated and working. an example of a director who uses authority could be someone like Alfred Hitchcock however he abused his authority and over worked his cast and crew by making them do take after take after take without breaks. This shows that though directors need authority they also need self control and empathy otherwise people will hate to work along side you. there is an article here about directors who actors love to work with and why: https://www.theguardian.com/film/2011/jun/23/actor-magnets-terrence-malick-brad-pitt
Communication means that as a director I will have to be able to get my ideas across whether that is by word of mouth, emails and various other forms of online communications and demonstration such as shot lists and story boards so that everybody knows what my intention is and how I expect them to achieve this goal so that they can do there jobs with confidence. Directors communicate in the same ways to communicate different ideas but to do this you need confidence and patience so that if need be you can go through the idea one too one so that anyone can understand regardless of wether there brain works differently and needs a different approach.
Decisiveness is important as it means that if a problem arose and I needed to inform people as to our alternative as I director I shouldn’t stumble around making an idea then deciding to change it without giving that idea a good effort unless absolutely necessary. This means that I should be able to inspire peoples confidence by not being knocked down when something needs to change and that I can be comfortable too make a snap, but not rash decision and make it work. This is important as without a decision everybody will be held up which will lower the moral of everybody and create an aura of doubt.
‘Be decisive and live with the consequences good or bad. Trust in yourself that you’re going to get it right most of the time and that, when it really matters most, that you’ll get it right’ – http://www.bleedingcool.com/2014/07/04/film-schooling-insider-insights-on-indy-filmmaking-be-decisive-in-production/
There is another list on https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Film_director#Characteristics:
- Those who outline a general plotline and let the actors improvise dialogue. Notable examples include Ingmar Bergman, Martin Scorsese, Christopher Guest, Spike Lee, Wim Wenders, Mike Leigh, Barry Levinson, Jean-Luc Godard, Miklós Jancsó, Gus Van Sant, Judd Apatow, Terrence Malick, Harmony Korine, Jay and Mark Duplass, and occasionally Robert Altman, Joe Swanberg, Sergio Leone and Federico Fellini.
- Those who control every aspect, and demand that the actors and crew follow instructions precisely. Notable examples include David Lean, Akira Kurosawa, Steven Spielberg, Ridley Scott, Victor Fleming, Erich von Stroheim, Frank Darabont, Sam Mendes, Paul Thomas Anderson, Jonathan Demme, John Frankenheimer, James Cameron, George Lucas, Stanley Kubrick, Sidney Lumet, Andrew Bujalski, Christopher Nolan, David Fincher, Guillermo del Toro, Alfred Hitchcock and Michael Bay.
- Those who write their own screenplays. Notable examples include Woody Allen, Werner Herzog, Alejandro Jodorowsky, John Cassavetes, Ingmar Bergman, Stanley Kubrick, Quentin Tarantino, James Cameron, George Lucas, J. F. Lawton, David Cronenberg, Charlie Chaplin, Billy Wilder, Ed Wood, David Lynch, the Coen brothers, Francis Ford Coppola, Sofia Coppola, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Pedro Almodóvar, John Hughes, Nick Park, Edward Burns, Kevin Smith, Todd Field, Cameron Crowe, Terrence Malick, Oren Peli, Eli Roth, Harmony Korine, Paul Thomas Anderson, Guillermo del Toro, Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Daryush Shokof, Oliver Stone, John Singleton, Spike Lee, Orson Welles, Akira Kurosawa, Hayao Miyazaki, M. Night Shyamalan, Paul Haggis, Billy Bob Thornton, James Wong, Tyler Perry, Robert Rodriguez, Christopher Nolan, George A. Romero, Sergio Leone, Satyajit Ray, Joss Whedon and David O. Russell. Steven Spielberg and Sidney J. Furie have written screenplays for a small number of their films.
- Those who collaborate on screenplays with long-standing writing partners. Notable examples include Alejandro González Iñárritu and Guillermo Arriaga, Elia Kazan and Tennessee Williams, Terry Gilliam and Charles McKeown/Tony Grisoni, Wes Anderson and Owen Wilson/Noah Baumbach, Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg, Martin Scorsese and Nicholas Pileggi/Paul Schrader/Jay Cocks, Yasujirō Ozu and Kôgo Noda, Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh, Alexander Payne and Jim Taylor, Robert Zemeckis and Bob Gale, Luis Buñuel and Jean-Claude Carrière/Luis Alcoriza, Krzysztof Kieślowski/Krzysztof Piesiewicz, Rajkumar Hirani/Abhijat Joshi/Vidhu Vinod Chopra, Frank Capra/Robert Riskin, Michelangelo Antonioni/Tonino Guerra, Billy Wilder/I.A.L. Diamond, Sergio Leone and Sergio Donati, Guillermo del Toro and Matthew Robbins, and Christopher Nolan/Jonathan Nolan/David S. Goyer.
- Those who edit their own films. Notable examples include Akira Kurosawa, Alfonso Cuarón, David Fincher, Mike Cahill, Jean-Marc Vallée, Steven Soderbergh, David Lean, Don Coscarelli, Charlie Chaplin, Robert Rodriguez, Rajkumar Hirani, James Cameron, Ed Wood, Gaspar Noe, Takeshi Kitano, John Woo, Andy Warhol, Shinya Tsukamoto, Kenneth Anger, Gregg Araki, Gus Van Sant, Xavier Dolan, Ben Wheatley, Kelly Reichardt, Leni Riefenstahl, Kevin Smith, Rodrigo Cortes, Joe Swanberg, Steve James, Jafar Panahi, Ti West, Joel and Ethan Coen and many indie, Internet and arthouse filmmakers.
- Those who shoot their own films. Notable examples include Nicolas Roeg, Mike Cahill, Peter Hyams, Steven Soderbergh, Joe Swanberg, Tony Kaye, Gaspar Noe, Gregg Araki, Robert Rodriguez, Don Coscarelli, Josef von Sternberg, Shinya Tsukamoto and Kenneth Anger.
- Those who appear in their films. Notable examples include Clint Eastwood, Orson Welles, Mel Gibson, Martin Scorsese, Peter Jackson, John Waters, John Carpenter, Spike Lee, Tyler Perry, Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Kevin Costner, Kenneth Anger, Michael Landon, Woody Allen, Jon Favreau, Quentin Tarantino, Eli Roth, Michael Bay, Mel Brooks, Ben Stiller, Alejandro Jodorowsky, Charlie Chaplin, Terry Jones, Edward Burns, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Sam Raimi, Roman Polanski, Erich von Stroheim, Billy Bob Thornton, Sylvester Stallone, M. Night Shyamalan, Harold Ramis, Robert De Niro, John Woo, Kevin Smith, Warren Beatty, Robert Redford, Takeshi Kitano, Kenneth Branagh and Ed Wood. Alfred Hitchcock, Abel Ferrara, Shawn Levy, Edgar Wright and Spike Jonze made cameo appearances in their films.
- Those who compose the music score for their films. Notable examples include Charlie Chaplin, Clint Eastwood, David Lynch, Alejandro Jodorowsky, John Carpenter, Mike Figgis, Hal Hartley, Alejandro Amenábar, Satyajit Ray, Robert Rodriguez and Tom Tykwer.
- Another way to categorize directors is by their membership in a “school” of filmmaking, such as the French New Wave, the British New Wave or the New Hollywood school of filmmakers.
This list focuses more on the variety of characteristics that directors have had and shows that the role of director has a great deal of room for diversity.
Film directors have creative control over the project. They are there to ensure everybody is working well together to achieve your vision. they work closely with actors in order to help them create the characters and performance. As a director your mood can and will effect the moral of the entire cast and crew. it is important for a director to have good people skills and it is increasingly important that they are kind to there cast and crew. The role of director has changed very little through history the first directors however acted alone as they would work the camera and that would be all (no sound). The first moving image director could be considered Eadweard Muybridge who used multiple cameras to capture images of motion which he then put on a disk that when spun would create the illusion of movement (the zoopraxiscope) since then the medium on which films are played and recorded has changed but the role of director hasn’t as Eadweard Muybridge had creative control over his work and worked to achieve his vision. by 1896 the first film lasting over 1 minute was directed by Alice Guy-Blaché she is thourght of as the first female director and is the earliest example of a modern stereotype director. She experimented a lot with the Chronophone sound syncing system, interracial casting, and special effects and color tinting. in this way she will have worked with a team of film makers bringing them together from across nations to achieve her vision since this time the only thing that has changed about the role is the size of the team people manage, the technology that it is recorded and played on and society’s attitude towards content. In the last few years with the digital revolution and availability of equipment there has been an incredible increase in the number of directors and the amount of content being made for various mediums.