Undergraduate Degree




DF2000 Digital Film Production I

[Studio Contact Hours: 39 hours; Pre-requisites: NIL; Academic Unit: 3.0]




Academic Unit


3 AU

Course Description


Learning Objective

To deliver to students a practice-based introduction to filmmaking and film production. To offer a preliminary insight into the technical and aesthetic fundamentals of filmmaking.


An entry course into filmmaking, Digital Film Production I is a combination of tutorials, studio work and production exercises that offer an introductory overview of the filmmaking process. The course covers the basic responsibilities required of key film personnel during a film pre-production, production and post-production, focusing on the various protocols and technicalities of narrative filmmaking. These fundamentals include a preliminary insight of film production; directing; camera, lighting and grip; production and set management; field sound-recording; and editing. Through hands-on practice, the course provides competency in the collaborative craft of filmmaking, developing in the student the necessary communicative, productive and technical skill-sets required of a filmmaker.

Course Outline




• Intro to course

2 - 6

• Introduction to the course

• Overview of the filmmaking process – pre-production, production and post-production.

• Overview of key filmmaking personnel, their duties, and responsibilities.

• Fundamental filmmaking protocols, including equipment and facility management; health and safety; basic proficiencies in cameras, lenses, lighting, grip, sound, and editing equipment.

• Introduction to the film production 

• Production and crew protocols before and during a film shoot.

• Basic principles of producing: scheduling, budgeting and set management.

• Basic principles of directing: script supervision, continuity, casting and performance.

• Basic principles of cinematography and location sound: camera, lighting, grip, and field recording.


• Mid Sem review of assignments

8 - 12

• Production exercise and final project

• Grammar of the shot – visualisation and the cinematic mise-en-scène.

• Grammar of the edit – language and the cinematic form.

• Translation of script to screen – storyboarding, the shooting script and shooting plan.


• Final review of assignments

Learning Outcome

Having received a general introduction to the fundaments of film production, the students will be better equipped to envisage a position for themselves within the film production creative environment. The students will know that the making of a film requires management, planning and co-operative engagement.

Student Assessment

  1. Final Assessment: 30%

  2. Continuous Assessment: 70% (of which at least 15% is participation)

Continuous assessment components may include:

  • Studio-based exercises and projects

  • Individual, group and team-based assignments


  1. Roy Thompson, Christopher J Bowen, Grammar of the Shot, Focal Press

  2. Roy Thompson, Christopher J Bowen, Grammar of the Edit, Focal Press

  3. John Mercer, An Introduction to Cinematography, Stipes

  4. Harry Box, Set Lighting Technician's Handbook, Focal Press

  5. Richard D Pepperman, Setting Up Your Scenes: The Inner Workings of Great Films, Michael Weise Productions

  6. Marilyn Fabe, Closely Watched Films: An Introduction to the Art of Narrative Film Technique, University of California Press