Real-World Training Pays Off: Film Connection Grad Noah Dekel lands job at 21st Century Fox!
Almost immediately after Noah Dekel enrolled in a local community college in SoCal to study film, he knew he wasn’t going to get the experience or connections he needed in order to actually land a job in the film industry. “I just really just wanted to start getting working on film,” he says.
So he started looking for other options, and when his father came across the Film Connection, Noah seized the opportunity to learn on-the-job. He enrolled in the program was placed as an apprentice with film producer Daniel Sollinger in Los Angeles.
Noah wasn’t disappointed: he found himself almost immediately helping out on real-world projects. “It’s actual work,” he says. “You’re not just working in the classroom and using your own equipment and making low-budget stuff. You just get in the industry and just see how it’s done in the real world.”
Toward the end of the course, Noah decided to focus on film editing and post production work, so he finished his apprenticeship with David Parke at Make It Happen Productions in Sherman Oaks. “That was also a great experience,” says Noah. “There was a lot of work to be done. I have learned so much there.
Noah took full advantage of the opportunity, not just to learn on-the-job, but also to make industry connections along the way. But the best part came soon after graduation, when Noah saw just how valuable his work experience had been: specifically, when he landed a job in post-production at 21st Century Fox!
The job offer came “pretty much through connections,” he says. “I was able to meet with Fox on multiple occasions,” he says. “I went into these meetings not thinking I’d get a job. I approached them just like I’d like to meet with them and get some more insight about the whole studio industry and how things work in a major studio. And then after a few meetings, I casually brought up, ‘I’d love an entry level job at a studio if you guys could help me out with that.’…Ijust kinda consistently followed up with them, seeing if there were any openings for a job. And then, one day, I got a call and they said they had an opening…It was basically all the projects I was able to get on through Film Connection to build a kickass resume that eventually found me this job…The experience you guys were able to provide through your mentors was enough for a big studio to let me work for them.”
Now several months into his new gig, Noah has been working in post production for a remake of the 1980 film Urban Cowboy. “The people I work with are really awesome, he says. “Everyone on the show is very experienced and really enjoy what they do…I meet someone new almost every day.”
Noah could have gone to college for 2-4 years to learn filmmaking, but he wouldn’t have gained the connections or work experience that ultimately landed him the job at 21st Century Fox. He says learning on the job with the Film Connection also helped him take personal responsibility for getting hired. “After film school, if you don’t have a gig lined up, consider yourself unemployed,” he says, “because nothing’s going to show up unless you look for it.”