No matter how much you’ve worked on your shooting script, and how prepared you are for shooting the scene, there is always something that can go wrong and that you can miss. The master shot technique comes to the rescue in such cases.
The master scene method is one of the films directing fundamentals techniques that began during the silent movies in the ’20s. It was a time when video editing wasn’t as easy as it is now. It means to shoot the whole scene in one long take in a wide-angle with all its essential elements, and then you can move on to shoot the coverage shots like the over the shoulder, medium shots, close-ups, etc. That way, in the editing room, if you find you missed a shot, you can go to this cover shot (the master shot) to the rescue.
When shooting a scene in a room, the master shot will usually be in the opposite corner. If you are shooting outside, just look for the farthest spot to cover everything in the shot.
Before I’ll tell you how to do this the right way, here are some tips you need to know:
When done correctly, the audience will barely feel that the master scene was made to cover faults.
Don’t waste too much time on it. It’s not a big deal if the actors make mistakes. It all If an actor gets confused in the middle of the scene, you can take the second take from that point. So the master scene technique is a very basic but useful film technique that is used a lot in Film directing. I recommend to read also about The Triple- Take Technique.