Cinema projectionist

Cinema projectionists operate the equipment that shows films in cinemas.

Average salary (a year)

£12,000 Starter


£22,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

39 to 41 a week

You could work

evenings / weekends / bank holidays on shifts

How to become a cinema projectionist

You can get into this job through:

  • a college course
  • working towards this role
  • applying directly


You could learn some of the skills you'll need through a college course like:

  • Level 2 Certificate in Digital Media
  • Level 2 Diploma in Digital Audio Visual Production

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D) for a level 2 course

More information


You may be able to start work in a cinema complex as a cinema usher or ticket seller before moving into a projectionist role through internal training.

Direct application

You can apply directly to cinemas for a trainee projectionist job.

You'll find it useful to have some technical skills, for example in electrics, electronics, cameras or sound equipment. IT skills are also important as many cinemas use programmable digital projectors.

Employers may test your technical knowledge and ability before offering you a position.

More information

Career tips

A keen interest and knowledge of UK, US and world cinema will be helpful. Joining a film club can be a good way of developing your knowledge of film formats and projection equipment.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • the ability to use, repair and maintain machines and tools
  • the ability to work well with others
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • to be flexible and open to change
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

Restrictions and requirements

You'll need to:

  • be over 18 years of age

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your day-to-day duties may include:

  • receiving and checking film reels
  • loading the films onto the projector in the right order
  • making sure the film runs smoothly through the projector
  • checking that sound is operating properly
  • joining lengths of film together if they break
  • storing the films safely
  • sending on the reels to other cinemas
  • looking after the projection equipment and organising services
  • being responsible for heating, lighting, ventilation and alarm systems in the cinema

Working environment

You could work at a cinema.

Career path and progression

With experience, you could become a head projectionist or move into programme management, selecting and scheduling films to be shown.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

We can't find any apprenticeship vacancies in England for a cinema projectionist right now.

The Find an apprenticeship service can help you with your search, send alerts when new apprenticeships become available and has advice on how to apply.

Courses In England

Aspects of European cinema

  • Provider: CITY LIT
  • Start date: 22 February 2020
  • Location: London

Italian Cinema - 3 Classic Films (at Hillcroft)

  • Provider: Richmond And Hillcroft Adult And Community College
  • Start date: 21 November 2019
  • Location: SURBITON

JobsIn the United Kingdom

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