644 Broadway Street, Suite 407 San Francisco CA United States 94133

©2015-2019 by Charming Stranger Films.

Field Work Term

FILMMAKING

INTERNSHIP

We offer two currently enrolled Bennington students a Field Work Term Internship every year from January 2nd - February 15th

We pay you $2000 and help you make your own film. We fly you to San Francisco & give you an apartment in the middle of the city.  This is the best field work term for filmmaking you can imagine. Join us.

WHO ARE WE?

Charming Stranger Films has been producing and directing short films in San Francisco since 2012. Our team is incredibly passionate about film — from the initial creative process to the nitty gritty details. We are a group of highly driven professionals that are ready to dedicate their time, speciality, and expertise to create extraordinary films.

 

WHO ARE YOU?

You are a Bennington Student that wants to make movies. That's it. You know how to make short videos with your iphone, have seen a few Criterion Collection fims, and you want to try to elevate your craft.

WHAT YOU’LL BE DOING:

Interns will be working in our office, filled with other filmmakers working on their own films. In January you'll help us run the COVEN Film Festival. You’ll be expected to put it at least 40 hours a week — mostly on your own film project. You will choose one masterclass, and you’ll complete it in it's entirely. This includes reading assignments, filming assignments, and script writing. You’ll do a weekly presentation of your work for us. 

You’ll also be expected to write, direct, edit, color, and present your own three minute short film that you created during the six weeks of your Field Work Term. Our last interns have all done it. So can you.​

Here's an example schedule:

EXPECTATIONS FOR SUCCESSFUL COMPLETION OF FWT:

 

  • Write, workshop, complete a three page script. Audition and cast it. Shoot it. Edit, color, sound design. Show your three minute film. Submit it to a film festival

  • Read books and watch movies before the internship starts

  • Keep a weekly blog with photos and video during your internship

  • Participate fully in COVEN Film Festival on January 10-12th, 2020

  • Keep a list of all the films and books you've read during your internship

  • Participate in and document two Dinner with Dames events

  • Record all films you've watched in the provided story clock notebook 

  • Complete a masterclass that we assign based on your skills and interests with one of the following master directors: Jodie Foster, Werner Herzog, Mira Nair, Spike Lee, Ron Howard, Martin Scorsese. ​

WHY A THREE MINUTE iPHONE FILM?
  1. In the past our interns have made 10 minute films that proved to be overwhelming and impossible to do on their own in the six week time period of FWT.

  2. Shorter films require more planning and stronger storytelling skills, and we think you are up for the challenge.

  3. We've tried using RED cameras, and fancy gear but it made editing and post too dependent on other people and gear. We're going to have our interns shoot on their iPhones because:

  4. We've been impressed with the Moment Invitational Film Festival and their three minute films shot on an iPhone.

  5. We've acquired amazing iPhone lenses and gear from Moment for you to use to create an amazing film.

  6. A 3 minute film is easier to program at festivals; let's maximize your likelihood of success. 

WORST PART OF THE JOB:

We are demanding. We want your best work and we’ll provide everything you need to help you produce it. Expect to be eating/breathing/sleeping film. 

SKILLS REQUIRED:

  • MUST be a self-starter who combines a high level of creativity/initiative with strong organizational skills

  • Experience with Apple Pages, Keynote, Numbers

  • Experience with both video and audio editing software

  • Be an effective problem solver who can work with minimal supervision

  • Have strong written and oral communication skills

  • Be able to work in a team environment, handle multiple tasks, and complete tasks quickly and effectively

GEAR REQUIRED*:

  • Apple laptop no more than 4 years old

  • At least 10 gigs of available space for editing

  • Backups in the cloud already set up

  • iCloud account set up

  • Have at least an iPhone 9 (newer is better)

  • An 1tb external drive with a USB-C connector

*If you have a financial hardship and you do not have this gear, shoot us an email and let's chat.

OUR PAST INTERNS HAVE SAID:

Read this description from FWT intern Clare Maceda:

 

“The Charming Stranger Films Field Work Term may be one of the most challenging and rewarding winter terms a Bennington student could have. During my seven weeks in San Francisco I was given massive amounts of production work to do, scripts to give coverage on, my own script revisions to do, Werner Herzog Masterclass workshops to finish, location scouting, audio editing, screeners to watch, people to reach out to, call sheets to make, and more than I can write down in one grammatically correct sentence. However, despite the fact that I was working from nine a.m. until I decided I should sleep, especially during the first couple of weeks, there was not a single assignment or project that didn’t make me not only a stronger worker, but a better filmmaker.

 

The amount of knowledge and know how that I amassed in such a short amount of time is unbelievable to me. Not many internships will throw you in headfirst as purely as this job does. Cameo Wood and Connie Jo Sechrist will give you just as much as you give them - so take advantage of the massive amount of connections they have and do the best with your personal time. It will be lots of work and lots of mistakes before you learn how something should be done, but it will help prepare  you for the film industry. There is lots to be done at all times of the day - and when the work day is over, you will have to make calls, read a script, utilize revisions, make proxies, whatever has to be done. But if this is what you want to do then there is no one better to work for than Cameo Wood. She will give you the email addresses of the people you need to know, give you the books you need to read, the movies you need to watch, and tell you the places you need to go to make your way in the film world. I could not be more grateful for this opportunity - but know that it’s not easy and if you aren’t going to put your nose to the grindstone you will not get all you can out of this job. Do not shirk because everything you learn here will change how you are in every work environment, not only film.

 

Without this internship I never would have known just what can be accomplished in seven weeks, and just how much time you can get out of a day. I learned that even if you don’t think you can work on a film anymore, there is always something that can be done to make it better. I learned that filmmaking is a team effort before, during, and after shooting and that everyone on set is just as important as everyone else. I learned that literature is a huge part of filmmaking and that if you aren’t reading at least twenty pages a day you aren’t amassing the huge amount of knowledge that you could be. I learned that you have to watch at least a movie a day - a filmmaker who doesn’t watch as many movies as possible isn’t a filmmaker. I learned that you are never just a director or just a writer - you have to be a gaffer, a cinematographer, a boom operator, and an AC. You can never be just one thing on a film set. Let yourself learn during this internship. Work hard and you will be rewarded. “

OTHER INFO:
  • This internship will take place from January 3-February 15th

  • Students should expect to travel to San Francisco and move into their housing on January 2nd and move out and travel to Bennington on February 15th

  • This is a paid internship. You will be paid bi-weekly throughout the internship for a total of $2000

  • We will purchase your flight to and from San Francisco (via a major domestic airport)

  • We provide a shared accommodation within walking distance of our office for you and one other FWT intern. Absolutely no guests or visitors allowed under any circumstances

  • We do lots of fun things, and you’ll have access to film screenings, and fun outings. We hope you’ll join us

  • We are looking for people who can commit at least 40 hours a week minimum for the full FWT

HOW TO APPLY (2020): 


Applicants should apply via Bennington's Handshake site and fill out the online form below with all required materials. No other applications will be accepted.

Required Submission Materials

  • A video link to a short scene that you directed based entirely on this 2 page Generic Script. Absolutely no dialogue can be changed, added, or omitted. There is a strict 4 minute limit. Note: This can be done on an iPhone or similar.

  • A cover letter you wrote specifically for this job.

  • Your resume as it relates to filmmaking - Even if it’s tiny.

  • A video link to a film you wrote or directed (or both)! Any length from 30 seconds to 10 minutes is acceptable. 

  • A one to five page script written by you that you could direct and produce with limited funds.

  • Two reference letters for this position directly addressing the skills we’ve outlined emailed to info@charmingstranger.com.

  • Head over to masterclass.com and tell us which masterclass by a film director you’d be interested in completing during your internship. Tell us why you’d love to take this class, and what you’d hope to learn.