Teen film making - The ultimate guide!
It's that time of year again, as the year prepares to come to a close we start making our short films in preparation for the MG Battle of the Films! The end of year party will announce the winners of each category... and of course the overall WINNING FILM!
As we've watched this process for a few years now, we have seen what some groups have done well, as well as a few things they could.. ehhh..... improve on... Read on for our 10 Teens Film Making Tips.
1. Plan, Plan, Plan
As a wise man once said "Failing to Plan is Planning to Fail". This is probably the most important aspect of the film making process. It's important to make sure you plan everything, from dates, who is in charge of what and of course plan out the actual film itself. This is why we give you a whole week to storyboard, so you can plan your shots, where you'll be shooting and delegate jobs to each person in the group.
2. Write a list of things you'll need
There's nothing worse than realising last minute that you don't have a prop that's a key feature in your film.. Holding a lasso won't make you look like a cowboy! Make sure you've not only PLANNED (see above) what you're going to do, but also make sure that you write down each prop, costume or item that you'll need to film. Obviously the MG staff can help you with some things, but for most of this, it's best you come prepared.
3. Keep it simple!
The key features of most of our past winning films, is simplicity. Complicated films are often hard to shoot, so keep the concept simple.. Whilst your backstory can have some complex aspects, it's best to keep the film basic so you don't confuse your audience.. Plus, as you are limited in your equipment, it's wise to stick to a less complicated plan.
4. Shoot in the most appropriate place
The MG office doesn't look like a kitchen. Keep this in mind when filming. If you need to plan a time outside of class to film in a cafe, house or different location - do so with your group members so that you can get the best shot possible. If you're not able to do so, perhaps consider cutting that scene from the film, or changing it.
5. Be flexible
Last minute things can go wrong, make sure as a group you prepare for this. You might need to change a shot. You might need to improvise - you're an actor, it's what you're good at!
6. Shoot landscape
This may seem to simple, but many have made the mistake. You will need to shoot landscape on your phone. LANDSCAPE. Need we say it again?!
7. Be mindful of sound
We highly recommend not to have audio when filming, unless you're recording on another device. This is because generally the sound doesn't work well, and outside distractions and noises can interrupt your film - as often people are filming around you - loudly!
Continuity is super important. It is one thing that film makers can easily overlook. Make sure if you're shooting the same scene over two days - you wear the red top, with your hat EXACTLY the same way.
9. Make that monologue pop!
If you're planning on doing a voice over, make the monologue one to remember. Spend time carefully planning your monologue, make it meaningful - remember this is often a key element to a great film.
10. Hand it in on time...
Pretty simple really - we can't judge what we haven't seen. We're super excited to see your films, so make sure they're in the MG office by Monday 28th November. At. The. Latest.
Oh and PS. Landscape!! Plus, if you have any questions or concerns, feel free to ask your teacher for help or call the office.