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    #31
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    The decision in this case isn't an emotional one, it's just practical. If a person's English isn't good enough to effectively tell their story for an entire documentary letting them use their first language is am option. It's not unusual for subjects to use both languages during a documentary, depending on the circumstances (e,g. using English in conversation with Canadians during everyday activities).

    It's something to be discussed with the producer, who may or may not agree, they may want it to be all in English, but when the decision is made, go with it. This is the dealing with people aspect of filmmaking.


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    #32
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    Oh okay thanks. What is the best way to bring this up? I don't want to make it sound like I am insulting the host, or the produce since it's a passion project of there's but how do you tell them that the English isn't good and to just not use it, without them taking it the wrong way?


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    #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by JimS2 View Post
    Oh okay thanks. What is the best way to bring this up? I don't want to make it sound like I am insulting the host, or the produce since it's a passion project of there's but how do you tell them that the English isn't good and to just not use it, without them taking it the wrong way?
    Ryan, what decisions are you making on this documentary? You say you’re the director... how are you implementing that?

    And your friend who is the producer... what decisions are being made as producer?

    Who is conducting the interviews? Who is choosing and setting up the locations?

    You need to answer these questions. To be able to answer these questions. I’m curious who is making which decisions here because that can ultimately shape how you approach your original question.
    Knoxville-based location sound mixer.

    Instagram @sonolocus


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    #34
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    Oh well I was making the decisions in the footage I shot, and the choices of shots I have done so far in the interviews. However, the producer is choosing the b roll, and so far I am letting him stick the narration script he wrote, it's just that he is having trouble with the English.

    Hpwever, should I make any changes to his narration script if that's better? As to what decisions the producer has made, the whole thing was his idea, and he gave me the location, some money, and had ideas for the tone and direction of the piece.


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    #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by JimS2 View Post
    Oh well I was making the decisions in the footage I shot, and the choices of shots I have done so far in the interviews. However, the producer is choosing the b roll, and so far I am letting him stick the narration script he wrote, it's just that he is having trouble with the English.
    So you aren’t the director. You’re basically acting as the DP.

    But I’m confused... are there two producers? The one who hired you and the one who is struggling with English?

    Quote Originally Posted by JimS2 View Post
    Hpwever, should I make any changes to his narration script if that's better?
    So the person struggling with English is writing and reading from a VO script? What kind of documentary is this? And again, who is the one conducting the interviews (who is asking the questions)?

    If the struggle with English is occurring in a VO script, then at some point that script should be edited to smooth out the problem areas. This doesn’t change the meaning of what he’s written, it just corrects grammar and syntax where needed. But you aren’t the director here, so the best you can do is talk to the producer/director about your concern.

    Quote Originally Posted by JimS2 View Post
    As to what decisions the producer has made, the whole thing was his idea, and he gave me the location, some money, and had ideas for the tone and direction of the piece.
    You still don’t understand what a director does, because you aren’t doing it. Again, you’re acting as a DP (I use that term loosely), and the producer is actually a producer/director (not unheard of in the documentary world).
    Knoxville-based location sound mixer.

    Instagram @sonolocus


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    #36
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    Oh okay, but I was planning the shots, as well and I thought that the director plans the shots, and shot list, etc, not the DP. I am doing the interview so far. But since I was the one telling the person what to do in front of the camera, I thought was directing, unless I'm wrong. The other guy is more of a producer, compared to the one who is on camera, speaking about himself. We are interviewing him based on a script he wrote, if that makes sense?
    Last edited by JimS2; 09-27-2020 at 07:38 PM.


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    #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by JimS2 View Post
    Oh okay, but I was planning the shots, as well and I thought that the director plans the shots, and shot list, etc, not the DP. I am doing the interview so far. But since I was the one telling the person what to do in front of the camera, I thought was directing, unless I'm wrong. The other guy is more of a producer, compared to the one who is on camera, speaking about himself. We are interviewing him based on a script he wrote, if that makes sense?
    So you’ve gotten into another project where there are actually multiple people directing. The director sets the “tone and direction” (from your earlier post), which is what the producer has done here. And why are you asking the interview questions? Doing that and operating the camera (and I assume sound as well) at the same time is asking for trouble.

    You really need to read up on what a director does, and what a director of photography does.

    But to your original question: you need to speak with the producer, but this really becomes a post issue now that you’ve shot a bit of the project. Just use English subtitles and be done with it. That’s not at all uncommon for English-language documentaries where someone is still working on English as a second (or third, or fourth) language.
    Knoxville-based location sound mixer.

    Instagram @sonolocus


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    #38
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    Oh okay thanks. Yes I know the difference, I was just willing to cross over in certain duties for them . But I don't have to give myself a director credit then if that's best.
    Last edited by JimS2; 09-28-2020 at 04:34 PM.


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    #39
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    Sounds like you’re giving yourself titles to make yourself feel more important.

    You will film him and if the producer/director has the budget or feels the need he will have English subtitles added after the video is complete.
    Last edited by Peter C.; 09-30-2020 at 02:57 AM.


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    #40
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    Ive never understood why titles are so important. If you do a role, maybe an industry standard title fits. However, in so many productions nowadays people multi task and the proper titles don't fit. I often think the biggest difference is producer/director vs director. I much prefer the director to be able to make decisions that have cost implications. I hate it when the director comes to me about running over time, and I know the producer won't sanction overtime, and I have to stop a director mid flow. A quick eye contact with the director/producer and a tap of my watch gets the imperceptible nod, and we drift into overtime seamlessly. That's so much nicer than having to whisper in an ear that we need to stop in five minutes, finished or not. If I was a DoP working for Ryan and he kept interfering in my role, I'd be pretty fed up with the job. I wonder how many real DoP's sign up for the nex project. Frankly, assigning a cameraman the title DoP explains a lot. I've never considered myself worthy of that title.


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