Writing movie reviews can be a fun (though you have to be good at it) way to make some extra money on the side for movie fanatics.
And no, you don’t need to be at the level of Gene Siskel or the late Roger Ebert. Fortunately, there are a few ways for amateur and beginners to get paid to be a movie critic.
What will I learn?
Get Paid to be a Freelance Movie Critic
There are a lot of sites out there that will basically pay you to watch movies and write reviews of them. Here are a few of the best ones.
This one pays you to write reviews on Comic Books, Video Games and Movies.
According to the site, each review needs to be at least 550 words long. Needless to say, they are looking for original content.
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They pay $15 per review.
Unfortunately, they don’t pay much, but considering that writing a 550 words long review shouldn’t be that time consuming, it isn’t that bad.
2. Taste Of Cinema
If you are good at making film lists and writing movie reviews, this site will pay to write for them.
They don’t say exactly how much they pay for each post, but they do say “The more clicks it (your post) gets, the more we will pay you. You can ask us about the details in the application.”
You can choose to write a few posts or you can become a regular contributor.
- To apply, go here.
You can write about TV shows, movies and even video games.
If you’re looking for steady work, this is great because they actually require you to commit to writing a specific number of posts monthly.
As for pay, they don’t mention it on the site. But I am guessing since they stress a few times they are looking for “in-depth premium” content, that the pay would be relatively high.
Bustle is a website with the majority of its audience being young women. they cover a lot of topics including entertainment.
You have two ways of working with them:
- Become a regular writer: They have openings occasionally so you’re not guaranteed to find an open spot.
- Write as a freelancer writer: They accept freelance submissions in the entertainment category.
They don’t mention how much they pay for either freelancers or full time writers.
Cineaste, founded in 1967, is one of the oldest quarterly publication focused on “the Art and Politics of the Cinema“.
They accept freelance submission for many categories including book reviews, DVD and BlueRay reviews as well as movie reviews.
Here’s how much they pay:
- $18 for Short Take reviews
- $36 for book or DVD reviews
- $45 for Film Reviews
- $90 for feature articles or feature interviews.
Also, if they really like your work, they may even give you formal assignments on specific topics.
Write Movie Reviews for Revenue Sharing Sites
Revenue sharing sites make it extremely easy for you to make money by earning ad revenue from your content without having a website.
Here are some of the best revenue sharing sites where you can make money writing about movies.
If you don’t have your own website or blog, or just don’t want to have to deal with creating a site and getting enough traffic to it so you can actually make money with your movie reviews and other content, writing for revenue sharing sites is an easy option.
Revenue sharing sites are basically websites where you (and anyone else) can sign up and create your own mini-site. On a site like Hub Pages, you can create content on just about any topic you like including TV shows and movies.
The way you earn money is through ads. HubPages will display ads on your pages. The revenue earned from those ads is shared with you (hence the name “Revenue Sharing”).
This is very similar to how Hub Pages works so I’m not going to bore you with the same information.
Yes, you can write about any topic you like, including movie reviews.
Start a Movie Review Blog
Another way to make money as a movie reviewer, and my preferred way, is to start a blog of your own and monetize it.
You can either use a free blogging platform like Blogger or WordPress.com to start a totally free blog or you can spend a few dollars to buy your own unique domain name and a hosting account.
You can either choose to have your site focus only on movies and TV shows or you can target the broader entertainment topic.
Either way, you are in full control.
Of course, creating content is the easier part. The hardest part is promoting your site and getting traffic to it so you can monetize it.
The more traffic your site receives, the more money you can make with ads, affiliate sales and other forms of revenue.
To monetize your site you have a lot of options. But for beginners, the easiest ones are the following.
8. Amazon Affiliate Program
Sign up as an affiliate of Amazon, get your unique affiliate link and use it within your content. Every time someone buys something on Amazon by clicking through your link, you get a commission. It’s as simple as that.
Obviously, you would link to products that are related to the topic you are writing about.
9. Google Adsence
Most of the ads you see online (the ones that say “ads by Google” under neat them!) are by Google Adsense. It’s a program where website owners, bloggers and online publishers can sign up for free to earn money by displaying relevant ads on their site.
Once you sign up, you get a small piece of code that you’ll need to add to your site. From that point, Google will automatically display ads related to the content of your site. Every time someone clicks on your ad, you earn money.
There are also many other ads and affiliate networks out there, but these two should give you a good start.
I personally think the best way to build a long-term business as a movie critic is to start your own movie reviewing blog. And with so many movie streaming services like Netflix, you don’t have to worry about paying for movie tickets. With services like Netflix and Hulu, you essentially have free movie tickets.
You can, of course, monetize the blog by selling ad space, or as I mentioned earlier, use affiliate links from Amazon or CJ.
Either way, it is a fun way to earn extra money and there is always a decent size audience for such blogs. So the market is there if you can deliver the goods.
Have you ever gotten paid for writing movie reviews? Please share your experience by leaving a comment below.