Seven ways to impress with your showreel

Your showreel is the most important thing you have when it comes to furthering your career.

If you’re hoping to snag someone’s attention enough to convince them you are the answer to the gaping hole in their creative dream team, it’s going to take some concerted effort to put yourself in the best light.

1. Keep it short - 2 minutes is plenty. Your first couple of shots will probably make the difference between us watching the whole reel properly or just scrubbing quickly through to the end. So make those shots count.

2. Don’t put in everything you ever made, just your best stuff. Remember you’re only as good as the weakest shot on your reel. And we want to see that you know the difference.

3. You want the right job, and not the wrong job. Tailor your reel to the studio and the position that you want. Keep it appropriate and to the point – especially if you’re applying for a specific role. Include the kind of work you want to be doing, or you’ll end up getting a job doing something you hate!

4. Make sure your name, current role, contact details and the date it was created are visible at the beginning and the end. Keep it simple and clear so we don’t miss your vital information.

5. Sometimes with group work it’s hard to know what your part was. Make your role on each shot very clear – so we know what you did and did not do. Confusion isn’t going to work in your favour.

6. Let the work speak for itself. Please don’t do any funky editing, flashy graphics and transitions, and preferably keep music to a minimum unless it’s relevant to the shot or performance.

7. Unique content stands out and makes you memorable. Try to avoid clichés or copying what other people are doing. Add something of your own personality. Be entertaining, show us that you can come up with strong, fresh ideas and have the skills to complete them with finesse and excellent attention to detail. If you don’t have strong work for your showreel, create it!


MIKE BUCKLAND is the head of production at Triggerfish and has viewed thousands of showreels whie recruiting candidates for Adventures in Zambezia, Khumba, Stick Man, Revolting Rhymes, Highway Rat, Zog and Seal Team, among others.

Seven ways to impress with your showreel

Mike Buckland, Triggerfish's Head of Production, discusses ways of making your showreel stand out.

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