Filmmaking (or, in an academic context, film production) is the process of making a film, generally in the sense of films intended for extensive theatrical exhibition. Filmmaking involves a number of discrete stages including an initial story, idea, or commission, through screenwriting, casting, shooting, sound recording and pre-production, editing, and screening the finished product before an audience that may result in a film release and exhibition. Filmmaking takes place in many places around the world in a range of economic, social, and political contexts, and using a variety of technologies and cinematic techniques.
Film production consists of five major stages:
- Development: The first stage in which the ideas for the film are created, rights to books/plays are bought, etc., and the screenplay is written. Financing for the project has to be sought and obtained.
- Pre-production: Arrangements and preparations are made for the shoot, such as hiring cast and film crew, selecting locations and constructing sets.
- Production: The raw footage and other elements for the film are recorded during the film shoot.
- Post-production: The images, sound, and visual effects of the recorded film are edited and combined into a finished product.
- Distribution: The completed film is distributed, marketed, and screened in cinemas and/or released to home video.