Film Accounting – The Quandary of Breaking In

Any person who wants to break into Film Accounting as a profession has a very hard time of it. The film producers don’t budget for “training” – they want somebody to walk into the position and GO-GO-GO.

Is Film Accounting That Different?

It’s not that film accounting is particularly difficult, or even that different. It’s the same principles as other industries, like construction for instance. The big three functions of Bookkeeping, Internal Controls and Reporting are true for film accounting just as they are for other industries. The biggest difference is rooted in the film industry specific practices, terminology and film accounting software systems which are virtually unknown outside of the film production industry.

Producers and the “Key” Film Accountants Want Experienced People

Most film accountants aren’t certified accountants in any other field – although if you have experience as a bookkeeper or CPA behind you it’s a heck of a lot easier to advance. Film Production Accountants are simply smart people, not allergic to fast pace and long-ish hours, who have worked their way into that position. The apprenticeship system still works, but when more and more demand is put on film producers to produce faster, cheaper, better, there’s less and less room for an apprentice. So, how do you get experience?

How To Solve This Quandary?

The only way I know of is to train as a film assistant accountant in a workshop environment using the film accounting software systems known only within the film industry. You will be saturated with film industry specific practices and terminology, all while learning the practical aspects of the unique film accounting software generally used in film production.

Come to my next intensive workshop in Los Angeles on May 17/18, 2014. It is 23 hours of CPE.

See my website at http://www.filmaccounting.com for more details. Most of my workshops are held in Louisiana, Atlanta, Detroit and Toronto. This is only the fourth time that I’ve been back to Los Angeles in the past 4 years, so don’t miss it!

Regards to all,

John Gaskin

Veteran of over 50 film and television productions in 6 different countries. See IMDb for credits.

 

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About filmproduction
I have worked in the film production industry since 1985, working on over 50 different productions of every size in 6 different countries. My self-published book, "Walk The Talk" is written in an easy to read manner for film students and working professionals who haven't had the chance to learn how to 'Direct the Money'.

2 Responses to Film Accounting – The Quandary of Breaking In

  1. Kerry Miley says:

    Dear Staff,

    Thank you for the continued briefs on the film accounting industry. According to a post, an excerpt states that paraphrases as “only courses taught by John will qualify for CPE to meet the State Board of Accountancy criteria for serving as a film tax credit issuer.”

    Please advise. I still have an interest in Film tax and my license is one-the-way. I have search but data on film accounting is scarce.

    Kind Regards,

    Miley, Kerry L., MPA, CIA, MA

    “It was a high counsel that I once heard given to a young person, “Always do what you are afraid to do.””
    – Ralph Waldo Emerson

    – The views expressed in these communications reflect the views of the sender and they do not reflect the values of representative organizations

    Date: Tue, 22 Apr 2014 01:10:41 +0000
    To: kmiley31@hotmail.com

    • Hello Miley,
      Thanks for the comment. Not sure which phrase you are quoting.
      See my training website for online self studies at http://www.talkfilm.biz
      I have some CPE self study courses for “Professional Accountants” regarding the film industry.
      I have a CPE Film Accounting 101 weekend workshop coming up in NYC in the fall if your interested.

      Regards,
      John

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