Camera Department

Film Crew Position: 1st AC

What does a 1st AC do?

A 1st AC, also known as the First Assistant Camera, is a crucial member of the camera department on a film set. They work closely with the Director of Photography (DP) to ensure that the camera is set up correctly and that focus is sharp during filming.

What role does a 1st AC play?

The role of a 1st AC involves a range of responsibilities including pulling focus, setting up the camera equipment, maintaining and organizing camera gear, marking actors for focus points, and collaborating with the camera operator to achieve the desired shots. They are also in charge of camera reports and ensuring that all equipment is in working order.

Do you need to go to college to be a 1st AC?

While a formal college degree is not always required to become a 1st AC, most professionals in this position have gained experience through hands-on training and working their way up through the ranks of the camera department. Many 1st ACs start as camera assistants or work as camera PA's to learn the necessary skills and gain the experience needed for the role.

What skills do you need to be a 1st AC?

To excel as a 1st AC, individuals must possess excellent technical skills, a keen eye for detail, and the ability to work well under pressure. They must have a solid understanding of camera equipment and be proficient in operating various camera systems. Strong communication skills are also essential, as they need to collaborate effectively with the DP, camera operator, and other members of the camera department. Additionally, being able to multitask, problem-solve quickly, and adapt to changing situations on set are all valuable skills for a 1st AC.

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