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Evan S
01-22-2006, 01:13 PM
I need to know how to make one of these. Is there a format? I need it to sort things out in my head better. To organize.

Scottdvx100
01-22-2006, 01:45 PM
Make a list as you visualize the scene. Make notes on your script. Master wide. MCU of Joe. Over shoudler of Frank. CU of gun, etc.
That's your shot list. Yo ucan add a comment next to each as to what you're tryign to show as a reminder to yourself. You can also noye which line or section you want to cover from this angle. You can organize that into a shooting order by grouping by camera setup or staging setups.

An easy example is to shoot the whole master shot, then one actor all the way through, and then the other actor all the way through.
You might list alternate angles or inserts that you would like if time permits. Star the shots you have to have and don't star the optional versions.

The main poitn of a shot list is to make sure you don't forget anythign and that you have the necessary shots to edit the film. It's also useful for going over with your dept. heads.

jkc123
01-22-2006, 09:14 PM
When I shoot I pretty much have the scene mapped out in my head. The one thing that I do write down, to remind myself, is to shoot specific cutaways & inserts. These are very important to have think of them as insurance.

Evan S
01-22-2006, 10:25 PM
Can anyone give me a visual example of what Scott said? I kind of a visual learner. Not that I don't get it, but because I think it would help me a little more.

*feels stupid*

Bigmagic
01-23-2006, 12:33 AM
Coverage is what he's saying go thru your script line by line and visualize what shot you want.
Example (poor mans)

Medium two shot, put a line here on your script indicating the shot)
Frank "Hey Joe what's up"
Joe "Whaaats up"

Close up of Frank(same as above)
Frank " Can I buy you a beer"

Over the shoulder of Frank(ditto)
Joe "You bettcha"

And so on and so forth. You likely won't have the camera movements already on your script which is better because you'll want to decide for yourself. I hope this is enough visualization. Good Luck

david_kuznicki
01-23-2006, 06:03 AM
And so on and so forth. You likely won't have the camera movements already on your script which is better because you'll want to decide for yourself. I hope this is enough visualization. Good Luck

Not to plug anything, of course, as I don't work for them...

But I've found Frame Forge to be invaluable for storyboarding. It works far better than a simple shot list. If you know someone good with Lightwave/Maya/whatever, see if they can help, as well.

www.frameforge.com

David Kuznicki
Production Manager, WGTE-TV30

negativeDP
01-24-2006, 12:05 AM
Every director has their own personal format of making a shot list, but I really recommend talking with your DP or camera man, unless you're shooting it yourself, that kind of defeats the purpose. Only reason I say that is I've worked with a director who edited the movie in his head and wanted every shot, shot, in the way it was in his head, not talking to me about it at all, very confusing and well, it doesn't work that way! The best advice I can say is get a basic vision in your head, know you're probably going to want a master shot, probly CU, MD, maybe a two shot, or maybe the scene calls for OTS shots. Great! Now, what you're really going to want to think about is the shots that count. Do you have any artistic or crazy shots you want to get? Write those ones down, talk to you DP about it, make sure those shots you want get in the bag. Oh yeah, and if you're shooting your shots on a tripod, when you switch sides, i.e., when you shoot all the lines of one actor and go for coverage of the other, make sure the camera is the same distance, use a tape measure. It just looks better, matter of a opinion though. And one last thing, don't get too caught up in your shots. Make sure you're getting the best performance from your actors. At the end of the day, it's more important that you get a good performance than lots of coverage. Doesn't matter what angle you shoot it at, a camera can't hide bad performance.

david_kuznicki
01-24-2006, 06:07 AM
Every director has their own personal format of making a shot list, but I really recommend talking with your DP or camera man, .

Absolutely! Truer words have never been spoken.

But, that being said... many of us (myself included) are working under compressed time frames & with microbudgets. That sometimes shrinks preproduction to "whatever I can accomplish before the morning that we start shooting," and I think that has to be recognized.

Hell, I can't count the number of shoots that I've been on where I didn't meet the camera op until (literally) that morning. It's one of the reasons I rely so heavily on storyboarding.

David Kuznicki
Production Manager, WGTE-TV30

GraBird
01-25-2006, 09:54 AM
I like to come up with a shot list as a guide, if only to estimate the shooting schedule. 5/8 of script pages might take 15 minutes or 45 minutes or more, depending on how many different shots I plan to do and the setups related to those needs.

Here's a piece of script that I'll borrow from Goodfellas.



INT. TOMMY'S MOTHER'S HOUSE - KITCHEN - NIGHT

where TOMMY'S MOTHER hovers over the seated TOMMY, HENRY and JIMMY. The table is filled with plates and coffee cups and the debris of dirty dishes.

MOTHER
Have some more. You hardly
touched anything. Did Tommy
tell you about my painting?
Look.

WE SEE her reach next to the refridgerator and pull up a couple of oil paintings she props on the edge of the table.

MOTHER
They want me to do a portrait next.
I'm gonna do the Mona Lisa.


Thanks to great ad-libbing by the actors, Scorcese was inspired to do a lot more with this scene. I have to imagine that much of this came from rehearsals, so the shots were revised and planned based on that. So maybe this is the shot list:

(You'll have your scenes numbered at this point, and somehow distinguish each shot. I sequentially letter each, but you could also number every shot from 1 to the end of the script; whatever works for you):



86 - INT. TOMMY'S MOTHER'S HOUSE - KITCHEN - NIGHT

A. FS of kitchen table, everyone.
B. REACTION CU on JIMMY
C. REACTION CU of HENRY
D. TWO-SHOT of TOMMY and MOTHER
E. TWO-SHOT of JIMMY and MOTHER (when she shows the painting)
F. TILT UP CU of painting (follow TOMMY's description)
G. REACTION MED CU on TOMMY (to "somebody we know"), PAN to window, ZOOM ON car trunk outside


So when you slate, you'd do 86A, then 86B, then 86C, etc.
I'd do most of the shots all the way through the scene, so you can pick and choose the best reaction CU's and TWO-SHOTS, and fall back on the FS of the whole scene as needed.

So even though this was originally 2/8ths of a page (and with the ad-libbing from rehearsals it's probably really 2 full pages or more), you (Scorcese) now know that you've got 7 setups to do for this one scene, and you can plan accordingly.

As mentioned, you could be a lot less formal and just mark shot notes on the side of the script. For me, I like to make up a list like this just so I can identify each shot for slate purposes and also to make sure I get every shot I wanted. Everyone knows we already did A through E and G but we still have to get shot F.

lucidz
01-27-2006, 11:47 PM
david, have you ever heard of grass valley?

Noel Evans
01-30-2006, 04:36 AM
David, after getting used to frame forge how long do you think it takes to storyboard one scene?

P!body
01-31-2006, 12:58 PM
To me it has aways been a checklist to make sure you got a shot of everything you have concieved nessesary for a scene using the old mental pre-edit- pre visualize thing.
Also it's important to have enough coverage to make the edit work, becasue best laid plans and all that.
So planning that out in a format that is as detailed or complex as you want it in a word document would be good. Good Luck.

Owen
02-03-2006, 08:22 PM
I generally do my storyboards and then mark up the actual shooting script with notes that cross-reference storyboard frames. Sometimes I'll just type things out if it's simple enough and needs no real pre-viz... like this:


SR51 EXT SWAMP – Tom And Bob look for treasure at hole
Setups: 1 | Shots: 3
Notes: This follows scenes in OMP’s cabin.

Setup 1>>Shot of: Wide est of area (bush and empty hole) as Bob and Tom approach. Run scene.
>>Shot of: Closer shot near hole to see Bob when he kneels to look at hole and to see Tom when he falls and finds binoculars.
>>Shot of: Tight insert shot of Tom getting binoculars out from under bush.

SR2 EXT SWAMP NEAR HOLLOW TREE – Bob yells at Tom for misplacing wig and beard
Setups: 2 | Shots: 3
Notes: This immediately follows the sheriff’s pursuit of the robber through the swamp.

Setup 1>>Shot of: Wide est of tree. Pan down from branches to clearing. Bob and Tom are approaching the hole in the tree. Tom runs ahead and peers into the hole.
>>Shot of: Closer 2 shot tighter on tree. Run the rest of the scene. Bob pulls Tom out of shot at end of scene and we are left staring into the empty hole.

Setup 2>>Shot of: Crane shot down from tree to area next to hole. Tom enters. Run scene. Bob pulls Tom away at end. Crane down to see into hole.

SR8 EXT SWAMP NEAR HOLLOW TREE – Bob looks for wig at tree. Tom lies about not knowing
Setups: 4 | Shots: 4
Notes: This follows Tom spying on gang at creek. The next scene is EST. COLLINS HOUSE – NIGHT. Give this some time at the end to slow down.

Setup 1>>Shot of: Wide shot of tree and Bob looking around tree for wig. Tom enters. Run scene. Bob leaves Tom sitting on ground, sad.
Setup 2>>Shot of: Close on Tom for scene.
Setup 3>>Shot of: Close on Bob for scene.
Setup 4>>Shot of: Hand held. Follow Tom through woods into clearing near tree where Bob is searching.

Lawsuit_Boy
02-20-2006, 03:15 PM
Personally, I really like to draw out fairly detailed story boards and describe each one, and then work out a shot list to go along with it. But if I'm in a pinch, or have no extra time, I map it all out in my head, spew out a shot list really quick, and shoot!

example:

http://i34.photobucket.com/albums/d109/Lawsuit_Boy/ehsstoryboard_4.jpg

these are from a comedic war short that I an now turning into a feature length drama. Production's set to begin in May. I hope it all works out.

I'm actually keeping a few of these though. Only wardrobe, hair, and location will be different.

Chris Messineo
02-21-2006, 07:34 AM
I would be completely lost without my shot list.

I do mine in excel. I have columns for:

Scene
Shot
Version
Takes
Description
Framing
Angle
Dolly/Pan/Zoom
Location
Actors Needed
Props Needed
Focus Setting
Zoom Setting
Iris Setting
ND Filter
Time Code
Notes

By doing all of this in Excel it also makes it very easy for me to sort and shoot in an order that makes production run smoothly.

Chris

HybridCreations
02-21-2006, 07:58 AM
That's a great idea Chris. Excel sounds like the perfect program for this. Thanks for the list, I'll be making one up later.
-Ryan

Chris Messineo
02-21-2006, 10:37 AM
Happy to help.

Chris

oneinfiniteloop
02-21-2006, 11:20 AM
Yeah, I had my shot list this weekend for a video shoot and I still forgot stuff. I guess that happens when you only have 8 hours. Eh, they're still good though...

Chris Messineo
02-21-2006, 06:15 PM
Yeah, I had my shot list this weekend for a video shoot and I still forgot stuff.

I had a similar experience recently. That's why for my next shoot, I will be putting someone else in charge of the shot list. :)

Chris

HybridCreations
02-22-2006, 06:50 AM
Hey Chris, I made a sheet up with those categories in Excel and showed it to a director friend of mine. He said, "That's not a shot list, that's some mutant hybrid franken-form covering 3 different departments." To which I replied, "Yeah, but do we have departments at the level we're at? No, we usually have a director, a DP and a producer keeping us on time." I think the things you included are very helpful and would definitely make the production go more smoothly as well as providing a great reference point Brings up an interesting argument about trying to run small productions like big ones. Oh well, to each their own I suppose, just thought I'd share.:)
-Ryan

Chris Messineo
02-23-2006, 10:48 AM
Hey Chris, I made a sheet up with those categories in Excel and showed it to a director friend of mine. He said, "That's not a shot list, that's some mutant hybrid franken-form covering 3 different departments."
Ryan,

That's awesome! I love that I created a "mutant shot list".

All I know is it works for me and in independent film that is definitely good enough.

Best of luck with your "mutant" project. :)

Chris

yagfxg33k
03-06-2006, 06:35 AM
I build a shot list from my story boards that I work out with my DP. The list generally goes through about 20 generations until we are both satisfied that it makes the most efficient use of setups and time. Once on the set, the 1st AC manages the shot list. Once I am done with a given setup and called print, I just ask for the next setup. I generally have no idea what the next setup is until the 1st AC calls it out.

As for props and the like, since I don't use a property manager, I have my continuity person manage props for each setup from a list that we generate from the shot list.

Brandon Rice
03-06-2006, 08:56 AM
Its funny. Maybe I am the odd man out here. But, I generally don't make a shot list but in my head. My co-director and I are on the set early, and we map everything out, and keep it in our heads. On a larger crew I'd write an actual list. But, I've never done it up to now.

spidey
03-07-2006, 09:05 AM
always have shot list. or people will bother you to death.

Blaine
03-07-2006, 09:42 AM
I use Gorilla 3.0 to breakdown the script into a stripboard, breakdown sheets and all the associated reports. From there, with script in hand it's time to do the storyboard. Notes on particular shots then go on the facing page of the script. So with the stripboards (and breakdown sheets), storyboard and script (with shot notes) we have everything we need.

Matthew B. Moore
03-07-2006, 11:06 AM
Its funny. Maybe I am the odd man out here. But, I generally don't make a shot list but in my head. My co-director and I are on the set early, and we map everything out, and keep it in our heads. On a larger crew I'd write an actual list. But, I've never done it up to now.

Try it. Not only does force you to pay attention to every visual detail, but increases the communication level 10 fold.

I hate doing extra work, but my films become much more creative and clear if I baby step my way through every visual detail. We basically check off the day as we go.

I can't describe how the process opens my head, but when in the throws of making a film, I find my memory is increased and my mental continuity hightened.

I know I sound like a hippy, but it really helps a lot.

If you do decide to go for the shot list and SBs, I'd like to hear from you about the before and after sensation.

bird605
03-13-2006, 07:05 AM
Great software program but way overpriced.





Not to plug anything, of course, as I don't work for them...

But I've found Frame Forge to be invaluable for storyboarding. It works far better than a simple shot list. If you know someone good with Lightwave/Maya/whatever, see if they can help, as well.

www.frameforge.com (http://www.frameforge.com)

David Kuznicki
Production Manager, WGTE-TV30

PopcornFlix
03-13-2006, 06:09 PM
In addition to shotlists and storyboards, I like to use
floorplans and mark the script. The floorplans show a
bird's-eye-view of the actors, set and cameras.

http://i2.tinypic.com/rc31pl.jpg

(Floorplan fromHollywood Camerawork (http://www.hollywoodcamerawork.us/).
They sell a good directing course.)


I mark the script with lines like a script supervisor. That
way, the keys can look at my script, and know exactly what
to expect.

http://www.scriptsupervisor.biz/graphics/linedscript.gif

The wavy lines mean an actor has an off-screen line of
dialogue. IOW, you're shooting one actor, while the other
one talks out of frame. Marking a script this way lets you
see at a glance how many angles you've got of a particular
line of dialogue. It also helps when you look over the
scripty's shoulder. Her script is lined with what you
actually shot, so you'll be able to read it like a
musical score, and know how it's all going to cut together.

Hope that helps!

.: POPCORNFLIX :.

Flash
03-13-2006, 06:25 PM
There's an awesome book called "Script Supervising and Film Continuity" that shows you in great detail how to note all of this, and break down the sides as above for coverage and continuity.

I never make those kinds of detailed notes like the Excel sheet, but I think it's a great idea for small crews, especially if you have to grab pickup shots later (and must replicate a setup) or are shooting out of chrono order.