Projectionists are responsible for receiving films, programmes or even individual rushes to be shown on a big screen to the director and other post-production staff and inspecting them.

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Skills required to be a projectionist

  • experience in projection equipment
  • ability to solve technical problems calmly and efficiently
  • ability to work under pressure and in relative silence
  • good communication skills
  • ability to work long antisocial hours
  • ability to work alone

Ways to become a projectionist

Many cinemas operate in-house projectionist training schemes. An NVQ/SVQ in projection is usually useful, as are health and safety qualifications. 

Job role and responsibilities

During the later stages of post-production the director, producers, post-production supervisor and composer may want to experience the film on a big screen. Sometimes on bigger productions, even the rushes or dailies will be projected onto a large cinema screen for review. The projectionist is responsible for either loading the physical film or, as is now more often the case, a digital file or DCP onto the projection system ready for play out. The projectionist is also responsible for the security of the DCP, encoded by a DKDM, a special code that only allows the film to be played only on a specific projector during a specific date range. This helps protect against piracy.

Some other job roles in post-production

Back to post-production