Technical Positions in Filmmaking

Art and Design, Engineering and/or Technology, Mathematics and/or Informatics
15 Jan, 2021 to 15 Dec, 2021
31 Mar, 2021

General information

3 months

Dear Students,

If you pursue a career in filmmaking, working your way up from the very bottom, if you want to be part of a film crew in a Hollywood production with big movie stars, in a TV series from a famous streaming platform, in a music video of a talented singer, or in a commercial of a big brand, please, read further.

Nu Boyana Film Studios in Sofia, Bulgaria, the home of "The Expendables" franchise, the Gerard Butler's "... Has Fallen" trilogy, "Rambo: Last Blood" and "Hellboy" only to mention a few, through its educational department FilmForge is looking for Erasmus+ students from high-schools or just graduated from high-schools from all over the EU and EEA, and the UK. As a start, you would need to have already acquired some high school skills in various technical fields as listed below. We need you and we are giving you a chance to work on the set of movies, TV series, commercials, music videos, etc. as:

But before you make up your mind, watch this short video about Nu Boyana and decide.


Camera trainees work with all members of the camera crew, but they usually work most closely with the second assistant camera (second AC) or clapper loader. They help prepare the kit at the beginning of the job and maybe involved with camera and lens tests. They might mark actors’ positions during rehearsals and keep records, camera logs, and other paperwork ready for the edit. Monitoring can be a big part of the role; setting up the monitors, cables, and wireless. They can even work with filters. If there isn’t a dedicated monitor operator, it becomes the role of the trainee. Experienced trainees may also be asked to take on the responsibility of using the clapperboard, changing camera batteries, and helping the focus puller (first AC). The scope of the job changes depending on the size of the production. They might start out making tea and coffee and getting the sides (printouts of the scenes to be shot that day) from the production office to the camera department. On bigger productions, they might help with the second unit camera, a camera set up to do secondary shoots while the main action is taking place elsewhere.

What’s a camera assistant good at?

- Photography: have a good eye and understanding of composition, light, colour, focus, and story-telling
- Watching film and TV drama: have a passion for the genre and a love of the industry
- Learning by watching and asking: observe the clapper loader and focus puller and ask questions at the appropriate moments
- Taking instruction: listen, do what’s asked, stay calm under pressure
- Reliability: get to set on time, be disciplined
- Communication: work well with crew members, write accurate and detailed camera reports

Tools of the trade

You will build up your kit over time. These items are useful to have in advance:
- Scissors
- Allen keys
- Cable ties
- Screwdrivers
- Pens, Sharpies
- Notebook to take notes
- Head torch
- Bum bag to put them in
- Waterproof clothing
- Layers or thermals
- Walking boots or wellies

Who does a camera assistant work with?

Camera trainees mainly work with the clapper loader but they also come into contact with the focus puller, camera operator, director of photography (DoP) and the wider camera department.


Trainee grips start the day by helping to unload the truck with the gear that supports the cameras. Under supervision from the qualified grips, they move the equipment to the right place on location. Trainee grips are on set throughout the day. At the end of each shot, they help put equipment away that’s no longer needed and set up the kit for the next shot. They do this until the end of filming and then they help put all the equipment away. The main role of trainee grips is to learn the trade. Grips’ equipment, cranes, jibs, and dollies (the wheeled platform that carries a camera and a camera operator), can be used in different ways. Trainee grips watch everything that’s happening; learn how the gear is used and how to operate it.

What's a grip trainee good at?

- Cameras and their support mechanisms: have a desire to learn the technical requirements of cameras and of the baseplates, dollies, cranes, and jib arms on which they are mounted
Watching film and TV drama: have a passion for the genre and a love of the industry
- Learning by watching and asking: observe what’s happening and ask questions at the appropriate moments
- Reliability: be able to get to set on time and do what’s asked. be disciplined
- Communication: listen to the grip, work as a team, communicate well, especially when under pressure
- Lifting: learn how to lift, have the stamina

Tools of the trade

These items are useful to have in advance:
- Waterproof clothing
- Thermal layers
- Walking boots or waterproof footwear
- Phone or notepad and pen for taking notes as you learn

Who does a grip trainee work with?

Trainee grips primarily work with the key grip or grip. They also work closely with the best boy.


Lighting trainees spend a lot of time moving equipment. They get to set early and might help unload the gear. Following the instructions of the best boy (lighting coordinator) and the sparks (lighting technicians), they help set up for filming, under supervision. They run errands. A spark will talk on the radio to the crew on the truck about what he needs. The electrical trainee will then be sent to collect it. With supervision, they might help run cables and set up lights. They make the tea, or, rather, they create a good impression if they do. Lighting trainees are not allowed to work alone, plug up, or have significant responsibility. This is because working with electricity is dangerous if people have not been trained. Their role is to watch, learn, and make themselves helpful.

What’s a lighting trainee good at?

- Understanding light: appreciate the techniques required to achieve different lighting effects and the kit needed to achieve them
- Watching film and TV drama: have a passion for the genre and a love of the industry
- Learning by watching and asking: observe what’s happening and ask questions at the appropriate moments
- Reliability: get to set on time and do what’s asked, be disciplined
- Communication: take direction and work as part of a team, working under pressure and in stressful situations
- Electricity: be interested in circuits, power supplies, motors, cables, and fuses

Tools of the trade.

You will build up your own kit over time. Here are a few items that are useful to start with:
- Waterproof clothing
- Thermal layers
- Kitbag for it to go in
- Sturdy, comfortable footwear
- Rigging gloves (heatproof)
- Head torch with spare batteries
- Phone with charge
- Notebook and pen
- Screwdrivers
- Multi-tool
- Adjustable spanner
- Craft knife or Stanley knife

Who does a lighting trainee work with?

Lighting trainees work most closely with the spark. They come under the responsibility of the best boy and the gaffer (head of the lighting department).


Sound trainees charge batteries, distribute headphones and look after cables and kit as well as the rest of the team.  They work under the supervision of the sound mixer and sound assistants. Sound trainees help unload the sound van, check that all the equipment is prepared, and move the sound trolley, kit boxes, and boom equipment when required by the sound mixer. A more experienced trainee might, under close instruction of an assistant, help with the attaching of radio mics or use the boom microphone to record background sounds. They are often asked to be responsible for making sure the rest of the crew is keeping quiet at the necessary moments.  They also take messages to other departments.  They might go offset to talk to costume about where to hide a microphone, for example. At the end of each shooting day, they help pack up, make sure the rushes are correctly labeled and that all the paperwork is handed over to the production office. Sound trainees make the tea and order extra supplies of whatever is needed

What’s a sound trainee good at?

- Hearing: be able to hear precisely, concentrate on listening to sound in a distracting environment
- Sound and equipment: know how sound moves, understand electronics, microphones, recording, playback, and editing gear
- Watching film and TV drama: have a passion for the genre and a love of the industry
- Learning by watching and asking: be able to observe what’s happening and ask questions at the appropriate moments
- Reliability: get to set on time, be disciplined
- Communication: be able to follow instructions from the sound mixer and listen to and share information with other departments and members of the team such as costume and makeup

Who does a sound trainee work with?

Sound trainees report to the sound mixer. They also work with the boom operator and the entire sound department.


Please, if you are interested, contact us and tell us about the Erasmus+  beneficiary organization that can send you to us.

We would be glad if you can stay between 3 months and a year if that is possible via the program.

In return, you will have the opportunity to work with professionals in the fields, learn a lot about the specific profession by practicing it and if you leave a wonderful impression that you love your work, you are reliable, responsible and serious in what you do, then you will have the perfect chance to get noticed by the Unit Production Managers and be called in for other productions in the future - already as new professionals on a contract. And that will be the start of your new career in the film industry. It's all in your hands.

In the meantime, if there is no active production at the moment, you will have the chance to work in the studio departments and learn more about how the studio functions and provides services for the film productions that come to be filmed here. And last but not least - if the workload at the studio allows it, we might have the chance to make some short films together...

Please, if you have questions, contact us at [email protected]
Filmmaking skills descriptions courtesy ScreenSkills!


No financial compensation
Years of Experience required: 


filmmaking  grip  lighting  sound  camera  film studio  

Additional Information

NB: - Candidates should preferably be 18-19 years of age, last year in high-school, or just graduated. Higher education students will also be allowed if they are interested in the professions described in this announcement. - Candidates should have already some skills needed for the traineeship positions described above. It will be great if they come from high-schools with vocational training in the required fields. - Candidates should be able to join us if sent by an Erasmus+ organization via the Erasmus+ program or an equivalent with their transport, insurance, accommodation, board, and salary covered by the program. - Candidates should be able to stay with us between 3 months and a year if possible. - Candidates should be from the European Union member states or the states from EEA and the UK.
English: Independent User B2
Level of Studies: 
Short cycle or equivalent