Narrative dialog editing/Follow Dave:Analyze the dailies

From Wikiversity
Jump to navigation Jump to search

This school is
Narrative Film Production
This course is:
Fundamentals of narrative film editing
This lesson is:
A quick overview of narrative dialog editing
The pages of this lesson are:
Lesson Summary - What is dialog editing?
Lesson Page - "Follow Dave?" Editing Workshop CD
Lesson Page - Analyze the dailies
Pop Quiz - Guess how many takes? - 4 points
Lesson Page - Select an editing program
Lesson Page - Edit the scene

Look at the film dailies from the scene "Follow Dave?"

What to look for

When you watch the dailies, this is what you will discover.
Excellent memeory
As you watch the film dalies, you will be amazed that this scene is so well rehearsed. Both actors have memorized their lines almost perfectly... before they begin filming.
Actors must be relaxed
There is a reason why actors memorize their lines BEFORE the camera begins to roll. Once the actors have memorize their lines, the actors can begin to relax. This allows them to get inside their role and to perfect their performance.
If the actor has not memorized his lines, the actor cannot relax and will never be in character.
Now look at the dailies from your own movies. Do they compare? Did your actors memorize their lines? Are your actors relaxed and comfortable with their roles?
Superb but simple camera movement
Another thing to watch in the dailies is the movement of the camera. The director for this scene is also a cinematographer so he knows the tricks of moving a camera.
Notice how the camera moves only slightly in this scene but this tiny movement has a huge impact on the look and feel of the scene.
As an example, the opening shot starts as a "two shot" (a shot of two people.) Then it changes to an over-the-shoulder shot simply by moving the camera back slightly.
Another example is when Buffy puts the books on the book cart. With just a slight movement of the camera, the over-the-shoulder shot turns into a two shot again. Very tricky! Very cool!
Dare to compare
Now look at the dailies from your own movies. Do you move the camera as well?

Comparing shots

When you look at the individual dailies, it is very difficult to decide which take is best. By the time you have watched an entire shot, you have forgotten just how good a particular piece of dialog is.

But then look at the "Start Here" movie and notice how easy it is to decide. When each piece of dialog is directly compared for each sentence, it is very easy to decide.

Overview movies

Therefore, you need to create an overview movie of scenes before you begin editing. (Note: All of the scenes from the Star Movie Shop have overview movies.)

When you are editing a real motion picture, you will hire and assistant to prepare the dailies for you, cutting the clips apart and putting them back together in chronological order.

Note: You will learn much more about overview movies with the next disk.

The next page

Let's pause for a quick pop quiz. How many times did they film this scene? Take a guess

Contact your instructor

Your instructor for this film editing class is Robert Elliott. You can email me by clicking here.