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Filmtools Filmmaker Friday featuring Filmmaker Siena Sivrican

Each week, Filmtools takes a look behind the scenes with filmmakers around the world

With hundreds of careers and opportunities, the filmmaking industry can be a unique experience for a Filmmaker. Filmtools decided to take a deeper look into the world of a Filmmaker. This week, we had the opportunity to speak to Filmmaker Siena Sivrican about her work. This is what she said:

What is your name and where are you from?

 Siena Sivrican Name: Siena Sivrican and I am from Los Angeles, CA

Primary role on set? 

 Siena Sivrican Director & Editor

Name a person in the industry that is on the top of his or her game in your role. 

 Siena Sivrican Editor: Tom Cross (Whiplash, LaLa Land)

Director: Reed Morano (Handmaids Tale)

If you had to impress someone with your work, what would be the most “well-known” content that you’ve worked on? – Could be local TV spot or YouTube piece.  

 Siena Sivrican My short “Hitchhiker”.

Best craft services food?

Siena Sivrican: Anything sweet and unhealthy for my diabetes. 

What’s the coolest project you’ve worked on before?

Siena Sivrican: I got to edit promos for Guy Shelmerdine’s Dark Corner. It was definitely a huge experience to work with someone as talented as him and also taught me to be more courageous with my editing.

When you arrive at the set, What’s the first thing you do?

 Siena Sivrican: Grab tea because lord knows I’ll need the caffeine.

Whats the first thing you do on set?

 Siena Sivrican: If time permits, I make a point to check in with everyone on set to see how they’re doing with time and make small chit-chat. I think it’s good to have this moment with everyone before the craziness hits. That way we both get to know who the other is in those quick couple minutes and if I need someone I know who to look for.

How did you break into this industry?

 Siena Sivrican: When I was in high school I was given an assignment where I had to create a commercial for a made-up invention. I got to direct and edit it. I never wanted the project to be over and since then I’ve been doing the same thing where I’m either directing, editing, or both.

What challenges have you faced?

 Siena Sivrican:  I’ve gone through crazy producers, actors, raccoons attacking crafty, beehives, soda can spontaneously combust, backstabbing (figuratively) and many other things. I feel like there should be a book series about all crazy, weird, things people in the film have endured. Even though it’s a shitty thing to go through at the time I would go through it all over again because they helped me learn and grow. 

Do you have a piece of essential gear that you don’t leave without?  

 Siena Sivrican Laptop and hard drive.

Current TV obsession?

 Siena Sivrican Alienist and Stranger Things.

Do you binge-watch new shows or pace them out?

 Siena Sivrican: BINGE. I hate waiting because I’m used to being sucked in on projects that by the time I’m done I have two seasons to catch up on and end up binging them. When I have nothing going on where the only thing I’m doing is waiting for a new episode I get depressed that I’m not doing anything.

What piece of gear do you have your eye on? 

 Siena Sivrican: The tiny but mighty Aputure AL-MX.

Camera – Should you own or rent? 

 Siena Sivrican: Rent for big projects but buy a good camera for personal things. Normally if you’re good friends with your DP you can get free stuff from him/her too. 😉

Lenses – Should you own or rent?

 Siena Sivrican: Kind of same as the above but I buy good basic lenses and rent anything super nice for big shoots. 

What is your preferred camera system? Lenses?

 Siena Sivrican:  Personal: Sony A7Sii & Sigma 

Work: I let my DP decide.

What are you currently working on?

Siena Sivrican I’m writing a period feature-film and directing a couple of shorts.

What advice would you give to people interested in this industry

 Siena Sivrican: Work on a set (student/commercial/feature) ASAP so you learn what to do and not to do on your own set. This would also be the number one place to bond with people you may work with later on. 

If you have an amazing DP never let them go. Kidnapping and gagging them is highly suggested but not recommended.

 Never give up. I know it’s cliche but seriously don’t do it. Every filmmaker has moments of doubt, this is a hard business to be in, but if you stay strong and push through you’ll come out on top.

Where can people follow you on social?

 Siena Sivrican 

Instagram: @siena.a.sivrican

Vimeo: https://vimeo.com/sivfilms

Website: www.sivfilms.com 

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