Reel Opportunities

Dolly Grip

What does a Dolly Grip do?

Dolly Grips are responsible for special equipment used on a film set, such as dollies (the wheeled platform which carries the camera and the camera operator), cranes or jibs (a boom device with a camera on one end, and a counterweight and camera controls on the other). They have the responsibility of taking care and operating this equipment.

The Dolly Grip builds the track and the dolly will go on top and help assemble the rig for it to properly ride. The Dolly Grip will ride on the dolly along with the Camera Operator to help get the track shots for the shoot. Along with the dolly they also help set-up and manage the crane and jib equipment depending on the production needs.

What's a Dolly Grip good at?
  • Knowledge of cameras and supports

    Understand the technical requirements of cameras and of the baseplates, dollies, cranes, and jib arms on which they are mounted

  • Specialized Knowledge

    Be trained and have experience operating and handling dollies cranes and jibs

  • Innovation

    Think quickly of practical solutions to problems, adapt equipment to particular environments

  • Lifting and Physical Fitness

    Know how to lift safely, and have the stamina

Who does a Dolly Grip work with?

The Dolly Grip will work closely with the Key Grip and the Best Person Grip. They work with the Key Grip to figure out the plans for the dolly and special equipment during the production. They work with the Best Person Grip during the day-to-day production. They will also work closely with the camera department when building and operating the special equipment.

How do I become a Dolly Grip?

Unlike many roles in film and television, there’s an established route to becoming a Grip. The best way to begin would be to contact your local IATSE union for trainee programs. They may be able to place you on a production willing to take on a Grip Trainee. After you’ve met the qualifications of a Grip, you can begin to apply for positions on unionized productions.
After becoming a Grip and gaining more experience on the production set, you should begin showing interest in special equipment. Take opportunities to work and learn the dolly and other equipment necessary for the role.

More tips

For more tips on finding job opportunities, lists of training programmes, and other great resources, check out our Career Resources page.

Professional Organizations Associated With This Role

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Job Profile Design by Dave Gray. Based on an original concept by Ian Murphy/Allan Burrell.