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Film Lighting

Careers in Film Lighting

Key Grip

Key Grip

Alternate Titles: Head of Grip Department

Job Description: The Key Grip supervises the Grip Department, providing all support for lights and camera on set. They shape light for a cinematic quality.

Salary: $60,000 to $100,000

Become a Key Grip

Best Boy Grip

Best Boy

Alternate Titles: Best Boy Grip

Job Description: The Best Boy assists the Key Grip in running the Grip Department by managing the crew, placing gear orders and keeping track of equipment.

Salary Range: $50,000 to $75,000

Become a Best Boy



Alternate Titles: First Company Grip

Job Description: Grips are part of the Grip Department. The Key Grip hires and oversees the Best Boys, Dolly Grips, Hammers and Rigging crew for a production. They make sure sets and rigs are safely built and maintained, collaborate with the Gaffer on lighting and, after the 1st AD, ensure safety on set.

Salary: $120,000 to $450,000+. (Prolific, sought-after Key Grips will earn into the six-figures.)

Become a Grip



Alternate Titles: On Set Gaffer

Job Description: The Gaffer is the head of the Lighting and Power Department on a film set. They work in pre-production and production to help achieve the desired cinematic image through setting up lights and running cables.

Salary: $30,000 to $70,000+

Become a Gaffer


Film Electrician

Alternate Titles: Lamp Operator, Electric

Job Description: The Film Electrician lays cable and sets up lights for the Gaffer on a film set. There are two types: a Rigging Electric and an On-Set Electric.

Salary: $17,000 to $72,000

Become a Film Electrician

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