Film Directing – The Triple Take Method

Shooting With The Triple Take Method

A few weeks ago we’ve talked about the Master scene method. Now I want to teach you another film directing technique called “The Triple Take method” and sometimes also called “The Overlapping Method”. It’s a very easy method and the purpose of this directing method is to cut in action while maintaining continuity. 

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The triple take method is a great method especially when working without a script and for documentaries, but also great for scripted scenes.

How does the film directing technique works?

The main idea here is to start each shot with the last action of the shot before it, so those two actions are now overlapping. Let’s say you have a scene where the actor is opening his house door, entering his home, walking to the TV, opening it and sits on his couch. You will shoot him opening the door and getting inside the house in one angle, then you want to shoot him walking to the TV in a different angle, so you tell the actor to stop, change the angle and now you will shoot him walking towards the TV, but the actor will to go a few steps backwards and start the shot from the part of stepping inside the house, so you will have that action in both angles. Now he is walking to the TV and you want to shoot the part where he turns it on in a different angle, so again, he will take a few steps back and play the action including turning the TV on. Now we want the part of him sitting on the couch in a different angle, so we’ll tell the actor to stop, we’ll change the angle and tell him to start from the part of turning the TV on (which we already filmed in the angle before).
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As I said it’s a very simple method, but I would shoot also a master scene to make sure the editor will have somewhere to turn to if something went wrong and we didn’t notice. Also, remember it’s a very technically scene that might be hard for the actor to work with, so don’t use it on emotional scenes.

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Working With Script a Writing Partner and Survive

How To Write Screen Play With A Partner

Writing with a partner can have many advantages, but if you won’t find the right one, you might not enjoy them. 

How to start looking for the perfect script writing partner?

The first recommended step is to find someone you know. Most known scriptwriting couples knew each other before they started writing together. If you don’t know anyone that can write with you should start looking. There are many ways to find your scriptwriting partner. The best one is to simply put wanted ads, but there are more ways: you can start a creative writing group or join to one yourself. There are also many forums for scriptwriting where you can talk to a lot of writers like you. 

What to look in the perfect script writing partner?

When looking for a script-writing partner the first thing you need to look is if he has your emotional point of view. Have him go through the Find you own voice article if needed.  Once you find your twin, the next thing is to check his availability. Can he work the same hours you can? Is there a place that is comfortable for you both to meet?

How to work with a script writing partner?

One you find your writing partner, you should decide how you are going to work together. If your partner can work only in the evening and you can only work in the morning (which means you didn’t listen to me in the first paragraph), then maybe there is a middle point you can agree on. I wouldn’t recommend at this stage, to decide how to write the script. There are many ways for script writing partners to write and I’m sure, you will find yours during the process itself. You might figure out that it’s better for each one alone and then meeting going through the scenes together in each meeting.

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When your writing partner joins in the middle of work

When your writing partner joins you after you’ve written a few drafts already, it is a great tool to get some new perspective. That is why it is not recommended to let him see the old drafts. At least not right at the start.  You can pitch him the idea and the story, where you want to take the script to and you can also talk about the characters, but let him give his ideas before you show him what you did.

Dealing with disputes

When writing in couples you should expect a lot of disputes. You should both find a constructive way to deal with them. You should both decide that your relationship should come first, write it on a piece of paper and shake on it. Leaving your ego at home is a very hard thing to do, but it’s a must. You should decide right at the beginning the responsibility of each one.  Make sure you both know what you are expected to give to the script writing process. 
The best way to end dispute is to see who is more passionate. If your partner is really passionate about an idea he had, maybe it is worth listening to it. If you really insist on an idea you have and your partner isn’t listening. Instead of telling the scene, write it down for him and let him see how it looks like. 

Don’t take things personally

Leaving your ego at home is a very hard thing to do, but it’s a must. Script writers are not easy people to work with. The key here is to simply make sure the disputes stays within the limits of the writing and don’t go to personal areas.

Eventually, you should remember that it’s all about negotiation. You have to give a little to take a little. As long as you take things under proportions, I’m sure you will do just fine.

Horror Film Music


Disclaimer: Some links in this Horror film music article are for scary films so this post is not recommended for young kids under the age of 16 or anyone that is scared from horror films

Writing Music for Horror Films

horror-videoeditingMusic and sound are the best ways in horror films to built suspense and to in hence the scary parts. That’s why you can see many horror films directors that have the same soundtrack composer again and again.

Many composers like to work with horror films because you can do a lot more in it. Music for horror films are usually more aggressive and there is more room for experiments. In this article, we will discuss the Horror film music.

Here is a few thing you should learn to make scary horror film music

What’s the Horror film music purpose?

The main thing you need to think about when composing the music is what is the purpose of the music in your film. Sometimes it might just be, to let us know that the killer is coming. Usually for this job, the composer will use a very minimalist music like in jaws or Friday the 13th In this case, the simplest the theme is – the better. Sometimes it can be just a repeating note that keeps returning again and again and gives us the creep like in Psycho.

“The horror in music comes from the silence”

John Carpenter

Use the movie’s theme to create the Horror film music theme

Think about what kind of feeling you want the audience to have, when they watch the scene. It will help you a lot to understand the film’s premise first. For example, in the very recommended movie, Suspiria, that deals with witches, Dario Argento, the director, said he wants the audience to feel like the witches are always in the room, even if we don’t see them. That was acclaimed perfectly in the main music theme of the film.

 Use contradiction to play with the audience head

The contradiction can also be a great tool to create scarceness. You can see that kind of style in the main themes of movies like Rosemarie’s baby, Where the movie use a lullaby song to create a very creepy atmosphere. Another good example is Nightmare in Elm Street, Where the composer uses a children’s game song to compose a very scary theme. The emotional contrast between something pure from our childhood and this nightmare we see in the movie is very powerful.

What’s the best way to play for horror films?

Every composer has its own way of making the music. You don’t have to be attached only to an orchestra. In the 80’s it was very popular to use electronic music and we always have the classic Goblin’s music in the movie Suspiria from the end of the 70’s that uses prog rock music and was one of the first horror films to use synthesizer it’s soundtrack. Some movies rather use guitars etc. It’s really up to you and the director.

Always test the horror film music

When working on horror film music, you can’t just let it play in the background.It has to contribute to the image in the scene. You have to test it in front of an audience and see how does it affect them. What emotion does the music invoke in them? Play the music to an audience without showing them the film and ask them later how did the music make them feel.

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I hope this article helped you to understand more the world of music in the horror film. If you like me writing about the genre, let me know, as I enjoy writing it.


Film Finance’s 1st Step – The Film Package

Writing A Film Package

In the last article, we’ve talked about making a rough budget of your film by breaking down the script. Now it’s time to go to the next stage of film finance-Raising money. Raising money is a very time-consuming job. It is usually the job of the executive producer (you can read more about that part in the article “The producer’s crew members” article) and he is better be an experienced one. I’m going to talk now about the first step of film raising, which is the film package. If you want to know more about raising money for your film, there is an awesome course from a very experienced producer in the Professional Filmmaking Courses page 

Film finance with the film package

That first step in film finance is only to be done after the final draft of the script is complete.  The package film includes all the important things that an investor needs to know about your film. When people pay for something, they want to see a product. Your problem is that you can’t create a product without them funding your film. That is why you are making the film package. The film package’s mission is to make them understand, how they are going to make money from  financing your film. You have to show them that the film has commercial potency and that you are experienced enough to deliver it.

How the film package is built

Now there are many things you should include in the film package and I’m going to go through them quickly, but what is important to remember is that while you work on each one of those pages, selling should be on your mind all the time.
The first page should have the title of the film, your connection details and maybe a picture that related to the film. A cool picture will help your investors to flip to the next page, and this is what you need to keep them doing – moving on to the next page.

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The next page will be the logline. The longline should tell your story in one or two sentences.  It should include the film’s premise in it, the genre of the film, the hero’s objective and his obstacle. 
The next page will be the synopsis. The synopsis is a very important part of the package. It will tell the story in short (up to 250 words).
The next page is about your connection to the film’s subject. Don’t write over 500 words about it. This is where you explain to them why you are the right one to do this film.
Your next page in the film package will be the Treatment, which is the whole story described by scenes. You go all through the movie scene by scene, describing each scene in a line or two. The average length of a treatment is about 10 to 20 pages. The treatment helps the reader (and you) to check how well the script is structured. 

So what do we have left?

Target audience– Who is your audience? are they teenagers, adult? Man or women? How old are they? Where are they hanging out? You need to describe your target audience as close as you can.

Market strategy – How are you planning to make that movie sell? Is it from the Internet? Is it through festivals? Are you planning to have merchandise? Show the investor you do have a marketing plan that will help his money to bring him profit. 

The next pages will be Timetables, The main crew’s bio and of course- The budget.

Continuity Editing Techniques

The Continuity Techniques of Video Editing

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The art of editing is divided into 2 schools – those who claim video editing should be noticed and those who claim the complete opposite. Most film today try their best to keep continuity going and to draw less attention to the editing as possible.

Making the continuity possible is, first of all, the production’s job, but if they failed to do so, it is the editor that will have to fix it. In this article, I will introduce you to some awesome continuity editing techniques. 


continuity editing the definition

Films are rarely shot in the order of the script. Even inside the scene the order of the shooting is determent by locations limitations, actor’s schedule etc. (you can read about the factors of production schedule here) continuity is a system the filmmakers use to keep things consistent between two shots that will be edited together. The elements that usually can break continuity are such as lighting, character’s movements, sounds, backgrounds and object placements, It’s something that is very hard to pay attention to and even in blockbuster films you can see mistakes like that.

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Let’s see some continuity editing examples:

Continuity in lighting

Continuity in lighting means that the colors in the frames are the same in every shot. Sometimes the director might shoot a dialog where the close-ups in it were shot in two different places. I mean each character were shot in a different place. The element that can break our continuity here is most likely to be exposure and lighting of the shots – They should be the same. The editor’s job is to do whatever it takes, to help them look as if they are talking to each other. In this case, the editor might need to do some color correction to fix the continuity problem. That is usually done by the extremely skilled colorist.

Continuity in objects

Here is an example of a very common mistake, when one of the characters is smoking a cigar and the size of the cigar changes on the different take (first it’s long, then it’s short and then long again).
Or let’s say an actor is holding a glass on the right hand and on the next take he is holding it in the left hand. In this case, there isn’t much the editor can do to fix it but simply choosing a different shot, but if the best take is the one that the actor is holding the glass on the different hand, I would say – use that. If the actorr performance is good enough, the discontinuity would not be noticed. In the movie Pulp fiction, there is a scene where John Travolta needs to stick a needle in Uma Thurman’s chest. On the close up of the chest, there is a red mark, but when she gets up with the needle in her chest, the red mark is gone. The scene is so full of energy and actors give such a great performance that it is not noticeable. 

continuity editing techniques

The first thing you need to do before editing a scene is to go through all of the material and see if there are shot that might cause a problem. See also  if there is are a solution you can give them. For example, if a character is facing right and on the next shot it is facing left, you can fix it with a flop effect (an effect that changes a direction of the frame). If there is a discontinuity in the action of the actor or in an object in the scene, a good solution can also be putting the third shot in between the problematic two if it’s possible.

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Make it a ritual before starting to edit a scene to look for discontinuity possibilities and when you finish editing the scene, look for it again.

After all of that, I recommend watching Jean-Luc Goddard’s film, Band -a- part, Where he introduce to the world of cinema a new kind of editing possibilities by creating obvious jump cuts and discontinuity. He did that for political reasons to claim, that when you watch a movie, you should be aware that it is just a movie, so you won’t be manipulated so easy. Today jump cuts can appear in the mainstream films, but only if it serves the premise of the film.