Production

The 20 Best Filmmaker Podcasts

Assemble

By Assemble

September 8, 2021

There are probably hundreds of film worthy, interesting and provocative programs out there that could make the list of the best filmmaker podcasts. To help navigate that ocean of content, we’ve curated a list of the twenty most valuable film and entertainment industry podcasts you really shouldn’t miss. 

So how did we decide what to include? We went to the source and asked a cross section of industry professionals (everyone from actors, directors, writers, producers to editors, sound designers, composers and cinematographers) what they were listening to that was either informative, educational or entertaining. 

This list includes popular podcasts about film and TV, but also many gems that might fly under the radar.  

Here are the top five best filmmaker podcasts that kept coming up:

  • Team Deakins
  • Just Shoot It
  • Indie Film Hustle
  • On the Page
  • Art of the Frame

 

Top 5 Filmmaker Podcasts

1. Team Deakins

Team Deakins PodcastThe Team Deakins podcast is an ongoing conversation between acclaimed cinematographer Roger Deakins and James Ellis Deakins (his wife and collaborator) about cinematography, the film business and whatever other questions their very active fanbase submits.

We love these free-ranging interviews with not only innovative cinematographer’s such as Rachel Morrison or Bruno Delbonnel, but actors, directors, writers, composers and VFX Supervisors. There isn’t a role in the film industry the Deakins aren’t interested in exploring.

2. Just Shoot ItJust Shoot It PodcastJust Shoot It is a podcast about directing, filmmaking and storytelling. Each week they interview favorite up-and-coming directors, screenwriters, editors, cinematographers, and actors, and learn how they became successful, working content creators. 

This podcast is galvanizing!  One week it’s selling your TV show with Amazon exec Matt Milam, the next exploring the actor/director relationship with Carlyn Hudson. Each week they share tips and stories of how people in the entertainment industry forced their ways into sustainable careers. It’s real world advice on how people made their work happen.

3. Indie Film HustleIndie Film Hustle PodcastIndie Film Hustle is your source to hack into the indie filmmaking world. It was created to help indie filmmakers understand how to get their projects made by bringing in industry leaders in the film business to act as a guide and support.

Want to know how Ed Burns made an indie feature for $9,000?  Want tips on the high octane blood and bullets filmmaking of Joe Carnahan?  How about spending time listening to advice from Oliver Stone and Barry Sonnenfield?  We thought so, go!

4. On The PageOn The Page PodcastOn the Page is the brainchild of podcast host Pilar Alessandra, who answers all your questions about the craft and business of screenwriting.  It covers feature writing, tv writing, pitching, webisode writing, video game writing, writer branding, agents and managers, procedural writing, writing for reality, personal networking and more.

Pilar is the author of two books on screenwriting and her screenwriting podcasts not only features interviews with working screenwriters and development executives, but offers tangible creative tools to improve your writing.  Now stop reading and get writing!

5. Art of the FrameArt of the Frame PodcastThe Art of the Frame podcast brings in-depth conversations with the top creators of favorite films and shows into your car, living room and beyond. In each episode, they talk with creators ranging from emerging stars to Oscar and Emmy winners. The podcast features interviews with editors, cinematographers, directors and more about their careers and their work on some of the biggest films and TV shows of the year.

Art of the frame could be described as art of the cut, as it often delves into the specific world of editing.  Host Scott Simmons created the popular editblog that is now hosted on Provideo Coalition, where the podcast resides.  Got questions about jump cuts, split crosses, mirrored cross-wipes and non-wipes?  You’ve come to the right podcast!

The Rest of the Best

6. FilmspottingFilmspotting PodcastFilmspotting is the flagship film podcast hosted by Chicago film critics Adam Kempenaar and Josh Larsen. The weekly podcast focuses on film analysis and features in-depth interviews with film industry players, including directors, writers, producers and actors.

There isn’t a “best of” filmmaking podcast list that won’t include Filmspotting and for good reason.  It’s a highly digestible mash of fun topics such as “top 5 movie meals”, homage to classic films and love letters to artists and their work. Bookmark it now!

7. Creatives Offscript

unnamed-Sep-08-2021-10-52-55-61-PMCreatives Offscript pulls back the curtain on the industry's leading creatives - from film directors to creative directors to CMOs and more - to learn how they did it. No bull interviews and inspiration on how to grow your career, pull off the shot, or come up with the next big thing.

Okay, we are totally rooting for the home team, but we are obviously pretty jazzed about this podcast where Assemble CEO Nate Watkin’s gets up close and personal with everyone from Ali Brown (the President of ascendant film production company Prettybird) to spinning yarns with former Peloton Global Head of Marketing, Carolyn Tisch Blodgett!  Not to miss insight for producers!

8. SoundworksSoundworks PodcastThe Soundworks name says it all.  This podcast focuses on sound design from composing to mixing and everything that happens in between.

This is a treasure trove of sound advice!  One week you’ll find Bonnie Wild, the sound effects editor and re-recording mixer of The Mandalorian, discussing balancing the palette of new sound creation with classic Star Wars sounds we all know and love (and how to do a Jawa loop group session!). Another week you’ll be treated to re-recording mixer Michael Minkler, supervising sound editor Wylie Stateman, and effects mixer Christian Minkler dissect how they recreated 1969 Los Angeles for director Quentin Tarantino, including their approach to building the distinctive sound of the vintage television shows within the movie, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.

9. Screen TalkScreen Talk PodcastScreen Talk features Indiewire’s chief film critic Eric Kohn as he talks with editor-in-chief of the daily film blog Thompson On Hollywood’s Anne Thompson about the indie film world and beyond - from film festivals to new releases and the future of the business.

The line between studio pictures and independent film has blurred, as Hollywood exec’s, prominent directors, producers and industry players regularly fly to Utah to bid on the hottest indie titles showing at the Sundance Film Festival.  That's not an outlier, indie film has become big business and screen talk makes it on our list of the best filmmaking podcasts because it ticks all the boxes of informing, educating and entertaining with its intelligent discussions and obvious enthusiasm for all things indie film!

10. WTF Podcast with Marc MaronWTF Podcast with Marc MaronWTF Podcast has been around since 2009.  A pioneer in the industry, its longevity is directly connected to the passion that creator and host Marc Maron has for honest, raw and revelatory interviews with iconic personalities.

Marc Maron is a comedian, actor, activist and all-around renaissance man!  Where else are you going to find in depth serious discussions about alcoholism, divorce, depression and creative inspiration with funnyman Robin Williams, uncomfortable confrontations with Carlos Mencia about accusations of stealing jokes or the joke fest Marc has with Amy Poeler as they reminisce and tease each other? This podcast is not to be missed!

11. The Plot ThickensThe Plot Thickens PodcastThe Plot Thickens is a documentary podcast about the movies and people who make them, produced by Turner Classic Movies. The first season focused on the life and work of director Peter Bogdanovich. The current season offers The Devil’s Candy, a breakdown of the 1990 film Bonfires of the Vanities, the inside story of how a star-studded movie with all the makings of a hit ended up a disaster.

Like a page turner novel, The Plot Thickens delves deep into the way film projects get made and the often personal toll it can take on the creatives involved.  A real behind the curtain look with interviews with the talent that lived it. The second season included director Brian De Palma, actors Tom Hanks, Bruce Willis and Melanie Griffith, and movie expert Ben Mankiewicz.

12. Happier in HollywoodHappier in Hollywood PodcastHappier in Hollywood describes itself as “A podcast about how to be happier, healthier, saner, more creative, more successful, and more productive in a back-biting, superficial, chaotic, unpredictable, and fundamentally insane world.”  

We were all in just by the description!  Then we were delighted by the content. Liz Craft & Sarah Fain are TV producing partners who take you on a journey of their process and more. Currently working on Fantasy Island, recent podcasts have focused on the writing, the waiting and the bracing for reviews!  A very accessible insider’s journey.

13. Wandering DPWandering DP PodcastWandering DP each week discusses the latest stories from on and off set with cinematographers at the top of their game. It is also full of news, inspiration, and updates from around the photography and cinematography worlds.

The go-to podcast on all things visual! Hear from top cinematographers on how to capture the best images on film, learn tips and tricks from camera department veterans and get advice and vision on creative best practices to get those challenging shots. How do you match the shot when the weather changes?  What about those daylight exteriors? A feast for those who look through the viewfinder.

14. FlashbackFlashback PodcastFlashback follows film critics Dana Stevens (Slate) and K. Austin Collins (Rolling Stone) as they revisit notable films from the past—movies outside of the current releases that have influenced modern culture and canon—and analyze them with a contemporary, critical eye.

Absolutely fantastic!  Any film lover will be delighted with an entire podcast devoted to a classic gem such as The Apartment or Diabolique.  There are a range of genres and these smart, fun and in depth looks happen every two weeks.  Gotta go now, just saw they are discussing the Mayles brother’s wacky and wonderful documentary, Grey Gardens!

15. RoughcutRoughcut Podcast

Roughcut is conversations with documentary filmmakers and video journalists about their creative process—successes, failures, and what they’ve learned along the way. Created by the global filmmaking collective Video Consortium.

These podcasts dive into every aspect of documentary filmmaking from the financial (how to negotiate a fair rate) to the artistic (Hao Wu on directing a film remotely) to the new technologies that are driving content such as VR.  An excellent resource for non-fiction storytelling.

16. A24 Podcast

A24 Podcast PodcastA24 Podcast gives you a seat at the table while filmmakers talk to other filmmakers about their approach to filmmaking and whatever they want to discuss.  There are no rules and no set topic.

If you’ve ever played that game of hosting your dream imaginary dinner party with any famous person, this is kinda that in real life.  You get to listen in while random cool people get together and discuss their films or the films of others!  Wanna hear Kelly Reichardt and Kenneth Lonegan debate whether Mark Ruffalo could effectively play an evil person? (answer: yes) or how about the minds behind Moonbase 8 delve into the demoralizing experience of pitching a show to Amazon and Netflix? Anything and everything goes from the production company that brought you Minari, Uncut Gems and Midsommar.

17. Good One: A Podcast About JokesGood One: A Podcast About JokesGood One is not exclusively film related, but has a wealth of content from comedy creators such as Mae Martin (Netflix’s Feel Good), SNL and Schmigadoon’s Cecily Strong and Dead to Me creator, Liz Feldman.  

Comedy is a funny business and there is a lot to learn here.

18. The BusinessThe Business PodcastThe Business is a weekly podcast featuring lively discussion about entertainment industry news and in-depth interviews with directors, producers, writers and actors. The show is hosted by Kim Masters of The Hollywood Reporter and produced by KCRW. 

This is a robust podcast with a slew of high profile guests including Norman Lear, Ava DuVernay, Matt Damon and Ice Cube.

19. UnspooledUnspooled PodcastUnspooled is actor & comedian Paul Scheer and film critic Amy Nicholson search to create the ultimate list of the greatest movies of all time.  In season one they watched every one of the AFI’s Top 100 films…and decided they could kick off half.  

It’s an interactive wild ride through film history as listeners weigh in on film choices  Armed with a healthy respect for all things film, they dissect iconic scenes (Hello Raiders of the Lost Ark!), spotlight their favorite characters (Did Carrie Fisher really hate those buns in Star Wars?), and talk to some of the actors and directors who worked on these classics (co-host Paul reveals a secret history with Galaxy Quest!).

20. In the Envelope: The Actor's PodcastIn the Envelope: The Actor's PodcastIn the Envelope is Backstage’s podcast featuring intimate, in-depth conversations with noteworthy film, television, and theater actors and creators.

We loved the interview with red-hot Julianne Nicholson about how she navigated the emotional landscape of her role in Mare of Eastown.  If you are an actor who wants to know the process behind the craft or the 101 on talent agents, this podcast is for you.

Throwback Bonus: Black List Table ReadsBlack List Table Reads PodcastRest in peace Black List Table Reads, which stopped producing new podcasts in 2017.  However, the great thing about the internet is that the content remains. This podcast is a window into the best unproduced screenplays. It shined a light on the overlooked and the rediscovered!  Some former Black List scripts became Oscar winners such as Juno, The King's Speech and Argo

You can revisit old podcasts and also see current lists. There is an active community on the Black List page which includes programs, partnerships, educational opportunities and a blog.

Best Filmmaker Podcasts Wrap-Up

Wherever your interest in filmmaking lies, you can find podcasts to match.  Think you can’t find a podcast to satisfy your craving for gay horror films?  Check out Horror Queers, where each week, queer hosts Joe Lipsett and Trace Thurman discuss a horror film with LGBTQ+ themes. Maybe you’re looking for a podcast on all things Star Trek from a feminist perspective?  Beam over to the Women At Warp podcast and live long and prosper. 

We’ve created a list that explores a broad range of interests from editing and sound to cinematography to film history.  We encourage you to head over to Apple, Spotify, Google, Stitcher and do your own search for the best filmmaker podcasts to discover exciting new content.

 

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