If I want to write in the film credits that I am an author of the film, which formulation is more correct:

film by Name Surname
fim of Name Surname

  • 2
    I don't think "author of the film" is normally used as it would for "author of the book". You need to specify whether you mean writer, producer, etc.
    – user3169
    May 2, 2016 at 3:51
  • @user3169 If I was a director, cameraman, sound engineer and editor of the film, which definition is more appropriate? :)
    – Rumata
    May 2, 2016 at 10:06

2 Answers 2


There are several possibilities, e.g., A film by Maxim Velichkin, or Filmed/Made/Produced/Directed by Maxim Velichkin (the slashes indicate alternatives). Anyway, I guess that you probably wanted the former, A film by Maxim Velichkin, and I'd recommend keeping the article A in front of film.

As a movie buff, I think it's always by in the credits, at least as far as I can recall. The preposition of is also possible in conversations, but it must be very rare in the credits rolled at the beginning or the end of movies.

Here are some examples of the results returned by Google when I searched for images of "a film by":

Google image results for "a film by"

If you try "a film of", you will get virtually nothing related to movie credits.

  • My hat is off, sir!
    – Victor B.
    May 2, 2016 at 1:02
  • Thank you very much for such a detailed explanation! I'm also a movie buff :) but I was not sure, what is the difference between "by" and "of" in this context. Could you clarify please, why do you recommend to write "a" in the phrase "a film by ..." - I thought that the "a" is used to refer to uncertain things (any or random things), but in this case we are writing caption about a particular film? Thank you!
    – Rumata
    May 2, 2016 at 9:52
  • You're welcome! Most of the time, usage of prepositions is not straightforward and many things go by what people use more often. In our case, a film by someone suggests that the film is made (i.e., produced/directed/etc.) by that someone. Unlike by, of has many functions. Even though it's true that (a film of us* could mean our film, of is rarely used this way with film, and a film of someone is more likely understood as the story of the film is about that someone, which is quite different from a film by someone. May 2, 2016 at 11:10
  • "I thought that the "a" is used to refer to uncertain things (any or random things)" -- Though this is true, it's not the whole story of the indefinite article (i.e., a/an). Unless you want your film sound like it's the only film you've ever made and probably will never make any after this, a is obviously the better choice. As for the general usage of English articles (a/an/the), you may find an old post of mine useful: ell.stackexchange.com/a/17433/3281. (Look for the "two basic rules" in my answer.) May 2, 2016 at 11:15
  • Thank you very much, I had read your post, it is very convenient and easy to remember rule that is very helpful, thank you! I only have one question, what about "THE film by ..."? Yes, we have not mentioned about this film so far, and "film" is a countable noun, so "a" is certainly acceptable. But since the credits related to a particular film that the viewer looks at the moment, whether it makes "the" as an acceptable option?
    – Rumata
    May 2, 2016 at 18:03

The preposition by used after a passive verb shows that someone has done something, and that something is done by him (first and middle name, whatsoever). So if he shot a film, the film is made by him - name, surname, or whatever - the film is by that person.

  • Thank you very much! I did not know that in the credits I should write first and middle name... In Russian language, there is a "patronymic", which each person have, it is often being translated as a middle name. It refers to a person's father name, so it is not as unique as the surname(last name), which may be more unusual, as well as in English. Therefore, in the credits in Russian films it is usually written first and last name. I thought in English-speaking countries, middle name, it is an additional name like "John Ronald Reuel Tolkien", where "Ronald Reuel" are two middle names...
    – Rumata
    May 2, 2016 at 9:44
  • ... (am I right?). I have seen reductions "John Tolkien", but did not see "John Ronald" ... Maybe I did not understand you correctly? I can create a new question about it, if you think, that to ask it here in the comments is misplaced. Thank you!
    – Rumata
    May 2, 2016 at 9:45
  • Actually, my answer was about the prepositions "by" and "of" in your example sentenses; mentioning middle name was offtopical to pay much attention to, if at all. Of course, your film will be a film by Maxim Velichkin, and I bet it will be worth seeing, like that by Nikita Mikchalkov. Happy Easter and all the very best, Maxim!
    – Victor B.
    May 2, 2016 at 10:44
  • Thank you very much, Rompey! :)) And you have a super great day and all the best!
    – Rumata
    May 2, 2016 at 18:03

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