You’ve chosen a concept and approved a script. Now what happens? Well, we’ve all heard the phrase “quite a production.” If you’ve ever been around a film shoot, you know all too well what this means. Shooting video or TV commercials doesn’t mean a guy with a camera just shows up and starts shooting. What surprises most people about any video production (commercial or narrative), and what most people don’t see, is that the actual filming is the shortest part of the process. This is the case even with major blockbusters. Most of the work is done not in production, but during pre and post-production.
This is the planning phase. The success of a shoot relies heavily on pre-production. Once a concept and script are approved, pre-production uses the script and often a storyboard from the concept presentation to determine location, props, talent, lighting, video length and more. But more importantly, when we’re shooting videos in-house, we do what’s called a script breakdown, develop a shot list and often a shooting board.
Our agency shoots video in-house or collaborates with production companies, depending on the concept complexity.
Shot lists are vital during production because it lets the director and the DP (director of photography, also known as a cinematographer) know what coverage he or she will need. For instance, let’s say the video involves someone talking about and holding an object. When doing the script breakdown, we noted that we want to see the person, but we’d also like some slow pans of the object being used. So that goes into the shot list. Now on the shoot the DP knows exactly what he/she needs to get this footage.
That’s a very basic example, but you get the idea. You save time and confusion on set if everyone knows the plan. All kinds of things can and will go wrong on shoot days. But good pre-production practices will vastly improve the quality and speed of your production day, when time is against you and there is the highest number of people on-the-clock to orchestrate. Good pre-production also helps immensely with the next step, post-production.
Speaking of the plan, there’s a reason all that work goes into pre-production. Along with making the production faster and smoother, it also plays a key role in post-production. Let’s say we had our script, we broke it down and made our shot list, and our DP got all the footage we needed. You’ll save time and money in post-production because now the editor simply selects the best takes and follows the script breakdown.
Alternatively, if shoot day was riddled with changes or it was “figured out” on set, we have a totally different story. Now we have an editor that has to sift through possibly hours of footage just to see what he or she has and then has to develop a story based on the footage. Documentary filmmakers are very familiar with this process, but it’s a much more time consuming practice, costs more and makes tight deadlines hard to meet.
Pre-production and post-production can take up
more than 90% of a project’s timeline.
So now you have a better idea of why video is quite a production. A project taking a total of two months could only require one day of filming. It’s important to understand that pre and post-production can take up more than 90 percent of a project’s timeline. These processes exist to ensure that everyone is on the same page with a focused goal. At Seed Factory, we focus our efforts on pre-production for every project to save our clients money and produce quality videos with clear objectives.
Partnering with Seed Factory brings you the creative expertise of an agency that has been involved in producing more than 50 videos and dozens of A-level TV commercials. We will help you from creative strategy and concepting, all the way through post-production, balancing budget and ROI. From in-house production to working with the best directors and production companies in LA and NYC, we have you covered.
If you’d like video production help, Seed Factory would be happy to further discuss. You can give us a call at 404-996-4041 or shoot us an old-fashioned email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to connecting!