Film Projectionist

Film projectionists work in projection booths in movie theatres where they work with 16 mm and 35 mm film. They prepare film for use checking it for tears holes or dirt prior to mounting it. Then they mount each reel of film on a projector. They also set up the soundtrack that goes with the film. The projectionist must stand by while the film is being projected in case anything goes wrong. If there is more than one reel the projectionist must keep track of when one reel is ending making sure to shut it down and start the projector with the next reel with a minimum of delay. Projectionists need good manual dexterity in order to do this job. When films are not running projectionists clean the projector and makes sure all parts are in working order. Some projectionists are able to do repairs but defective projectors are sent out when they need major repair. The website reports that film projectionists need a high school diploma or the equivalent. Projectionists that work in small nonunion theatres may be allowed to serve an apprenticeship and learn on the job. However larger movie theatres usually have union contracts and their projectionists are more likely to have attended vocational or technical schools that offer training in the necessary skills. In addition union projectionists must serve an apprenticeship for one or two years and pass a union examination. According to the website the employment outlook for film projectionists is poor as the number of available jobs is not expected to increase significantly. The website says that entry level projectionists earn approximately $9.50 per hour which amounts to about $20000 a year. With experience projectionists can earn a median salary of about $28000 a year.

Education Required: High School Diploma & Specialized Training
Avg Salary: $24000
High Salary: $28000
Low Salary: $20000
Tasks: Operates the equipment in the projection booths of theatres.
Inspects films before they are shown.
Places film reels on projectors.
Repairs film if it is broken.
Also Called: Motion Picture Projectionist
Projector Operator
Theatre Film Projectionist
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