Films Made with a Smartphone

Phone and Tripod

Many people will have taken out their smartphone to capture a special moment on film, but did you know that some have turned their handsets to creating genuinely dramatic, short films? As well as the amateur user, some of the film industry’s biggest stars have appeared either in front of or behind a smartphone camera at one point in their career.

We’re taking a look at some of the best and most interesting films that have ever been shot on a smartphone, and you may be surprised by some the names that crop up on the list.

The Commuter

Back in 2010, Nokia spared little in promoting its landmark N8 handset, drawing particular attention to the device’s 12 megapixel camera. The company produced this star-studded short film which includes Charles Dance, Pamela Anderson and Dev Patel amongst its cast list, and which was filmed entirely on a Nokia N8.

While the film is perhaps not a great example of short film drama it is an interesting way of showing off what the device is capable of, an idea that Nokia has continued with the Lumia 1020.

The Stairwell

BAFTA award-winning Director Shane Meadows took to the smallest of screens for this incredibly short film, produced in 2005. Starring Andrew Shim and Vicky McClure, who would both crop up in many of Meadows’ later productions, the film lasts only 40 seconds.

Shot on a Nokia N90, a clamshell handset which featured an optical zoom lens, the clip still manages to be quite dramatic, despite its short length.


Strapping an iPhone 4S to a glide track and several tripods is an unusual way to make a film, but that’s what French director Mael Silvestre did for this short video. Featuring a main character dressed in period clothing, the film follows him capturing photos with a beautiful old camera.

Reflecting its short length and DIY ethic, the film was written and produced entirely within the space of a weekend.

The Maker

Produced in an even shorter space of time, YouTube user Gary Kennedy’s clip The Maker was shot in a lunch break. Featuring dramatic black and white footage captured on a Samsung Galaxy S III, the film does a brilliant job of building tension and wonder before delivering a charming pay off that should make you smile.

While YouTube is full of countless clips shot on mobile devices, The Maker is a cut above the rest and stands as an example of what many smartphones are capable of doing.

Leave a Reply