What Does the Term “Best Boy” Mean and What is the Difference Between the Gaffer and the Key Grip?

Filmmaking requires precision teamwork, and each credit is well earned.

In movie language, a gaffer is the chief electrician; it evolved from the German word granfer, meaning “grandfather.”

A grip requires strength, because he or she builds and dismantles scenery and handles other physical chores that require a strong grip.

A best boy is the gaffer’s or grip’s assistant.

Credits for the gaffer, the key grip, and the best boy are usually shown at the end of a movie.

About Karen Hill

Karen Hill is a freelance writer, editor, and columnist. Born in New York, her work has appeared in the Examiner, Yahoo News, Buzzfeed, among others.

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