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Film Researcher

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Summary

Investigate and correct inaccurate information in movie scripts.

What does a Film Researcher do?

A Film Researcher researches and fact-checks the information in movies — both fiction and nonfiction — so they’re as accurate, and therefore believable, as possible.

In his 2006 global warming documentary, “An Inconvenient Truth,” was Al Gore right when he said the collapse of a major ice sheet in Greenland could raise global sea levels by approximately 20 feet? In the 1984 film “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom,” was the name of the Hindu god Shiva accurate? And in the 1995 movie “Apollo 13,” was the stated year of the lunar mission — 1970 — correct? If you were a Film Researcher working on any of those films, you’d know the answers.

Employed within the entertainment industry by movie studios, production companies, law firms, and research firms, you spend your days as a Film Researcher searching for information, then finding out if it’s correct and correcting it if it isn’t.

Typically, you work with films in pre-production. Before the movie’s made, therefore, you comb through the script in order to fact-check it, which means reading it, then highlighting information — names, dates, locations, occupations, historical and cultural references, scientific facts, etc. — that will need to be verified. Upon reading the script and identifying your research objectives, you then set to work finding and correcting facts by doing Internet searches, e-mailing and calling subject matter experts, and accessing electronic research tools.

You’re like a Librarian. Instead of helping students research term papers for school, however, you help Producers research scripts for the silver screen.

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