For many hopefuls on a mission to break into Hollywood, becoming a production assistant on the set of a film, television show, or commercial shoot is one of the best ways to a launch a career. PAs are responsible for being on-hand to help all production personnel, including wardrobe, camera, electrical, and props, as well as handling other administrative and office duties such as answering phones, making copies of scripts, and running errands.
It’s a position that can at times feel similar to entering some sort of film industry boot camp, a litmus test that professionals can use to determine who’s really willing to put in the hard work and hours necessary to see a production to its completion. With that in mind, Full Sail recently brought 2nd Assistant Director Jeremy Marks to campus to host a Production Assistant Boot Camp workshop. Marks has worked on a variety of projects, including Tony Scott’s Unstoppable, The Last Airbender, and Ugly Betty. He also recently completed work on JJ. Abram’s pilot, Person of Interest and the New York unit of Captain America.During his presentation, Marks guided students through the duties and responsibilities of a production assistant, and shared stories that revealed just what it takes to make an impression (hopefully a good one) on set. He also spoke about the DGA Assistant Director Training Program, an initiative that helped him further his own career in 2007. Marks also offered up advice about how to network and use the PA experience as a springboard to other career opportunities for feature films. At the close of his presentation, students were able to ask questions during an open Q&A session.