Grips and Set-Up Workers, Motion Picture Sets, Studios, and Stages Job Description video

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Grips and Set-Up Workers, Motion Picture Sets, Studios, and Stages Job Description

There’s more to making a movie or television show, than what the audience sees. Behind the scenes there are workers responsible for moving equipment and building sets. Called Grips, or Set-up Workers, they are the “muscle” on a film or TV shoot. Grips are “jacks of all trades.” They assist the electricians with lighting. They help move and set up camera equipment. Working under the guidance of the set designers, grips handle the movie’s carpentry needs. That requires using power tools like electric saws and drills, as well as hand tools. This is a job that takes a lot of physical strength. When a prop…or piece of equipment…needs to be moved, it’s usually the grip who moves it. Bending…lifting…climbing ladders are all part of the day’s work. And in movies, the days can be very long. The crews are often on the set before sunrise…and it’s not unusual to put in 12 to 16 hour days. And they are usually moving from one project to another. Many of these jobs are union, so the pay can be good. Especially with all the overtime. There’s no formal education needed. Carpentry skills are a plus, but most of the work can be learned on the job from a senior worker. These workers need to be team players and problem solvers. There’s also opportunity to climb the career ladder -- becoming a supervisor …or moving into a more specialized trade. The magic of movies just wouldn’t be possible without the hard work of grips.

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