1. Have clear idea about your story. Write a script, but be prepared to improvise.
  2. Know your phone’s camera. Select HQ settings (full HD if possible), clear your memory, etc.
  3. Get help! Enlist friends and family, and give them specific tasks (sound, lighting, set decorating, make-up, etc.)
  4. Get some extra gear. A cheap clip-on mic will improve sound hugely. Borrow or McGyver a tripod to get steady video results.
  5. Have plan for how you’re going your movie “in the can” (shot list, schedule, lunch!). Give yourself the time you think to get it done, then double it!


  1. Hold the phone sideways (horizontal, not vertical).
  2. Put your phone on Airplane Mode to avoid spoiling great takes.
  3. Don’t use the zoom; it may give you shaky footage.
  4. Get good audio! If possible, record with clip-on mic, on a different phone.
  5. Use light to your advantage. Avoid shooting into the sun; put it behind the camera. If you’re shooting indoors, use lights to make your actors look good.


  1. Try hard to make your video 2 minutes. But up to 3 minutes will be accepted.
  2. You need to shoot the video on your phone, but you can edit anywhere/how you like. Use a video editing program on your computer or get someone to edit it for you!
  3. Add music, titles, graphics. etc. Punch it up!
  4. Show it to friends & family for honest opinions. It’s your project, but others have to ‘get it’.
  5. Test screen your video on a bigger screen than your phone. Make sure it looks and sounds good before outputting and uploading your T1DVF submission to YouTube.

Additional Reading

How smart is your smart phone?
How to shoot a Hollywood movie on your smartphone
WikiHow to Create a Short Film Only Using Android Smartphone
iMovie download
DaVinci Resolve download