Unless you are making a live TV show you will need to post-produce your movie or show. Post-production covers everything that takes place after the stage, including editing. Even TV shows that have been recorded in segments will be edited together in post-production. Graphics music, sound and picture effects can also be added at this stage.


 Usually you begin by viewing the source material, adding detail to the shot logs as you go so that you have a list of all the shots you can use in the edit. It is not possible to remember all the many different pictures you have without a list.
If you have a complicated interview to edit it might be worth transcribing what has been said so that you can look through the notes and pick out the relevant points.
Using your notes you can then do a ‘paper edit’. Create a list of pictures and sounds that will go together to make the movie or show.
If you are transferring your footage to a laptop for review and rough-cut during shooting it is important to label all the shots clearly.  This will help in finding


Television and cinema are not reality - even in the most directly representative moviethe audience sees a speeded up, intensified version of reality. For example, in live sports coverage you do not get a spectators view of the game. You have added instant replays which cover up dull bits of the action. Cameras and microphones bring you close to the pitch, even into the goalmouth!
Montage is the technique used to create this heightened form of reality. It is characterized by use of close-ups of people and physical details, the telescoping of time and abrupt changes of scene to build tempo and heighten emotion.
Take a simple example - someone going from a house to a car, getting in and driving away. In reality this will take about two minutes. In your edit you will probably use one shot of the person coming from the house (5 sec’s), opening the car door (2 secs) and a shot of the road which the car drives into (7 sec’s). The two minutes reality becomes 14 seconds television. The sort of soundtrack you use with the pictures, and what the audience has seen before will create a story for them from these few images. If the scene before had images of a ransacked room and the soundtrack includes a siren in the distance it becomes the story of a burglar making a getaway.

After the paper edit you should roughly edit together a version of the movie. You could even use a copy of your original material and low cost equipment, as picture and sound quality is not so important at this stage. You should take as much time as you can afford to do the first edit, this is where you can test out ideas and see what really works, and what needs to be changed. You can try out the rough version on a few other people to see how it is working, but remember to warn them in advance that this is a working version and is not meant to be technically perfect.

When you have finished this you will know what material is going into the final edit. You should have worked out precisely what effects, graphics, captions, music etc. you are going to use, and where.
Every movie an television show needs some graphics. The opening title and closing credits are a minimum. Sometimes you will find that using either a still photograph, diagram or other graphic image can save you a lot of filming time and improve the quality of your story. The graphics for the opening title sequence are particularly important as they set the scene for the movie and let the audience know what to expect. The style you use should reflect the content of the story.
The preparation of graphics can be left till late in the production process, but allow enough time for delivery before the online edit. Never assume you can create a title sequence during the on-line. Even if the equipment is capable of creating the title sequence you want, sometimes not the case, it could take hours or days of expensive crew time. You can have your finished graphics on disc or in the right format for the editing software.. Your choice will depend on the resources available to you, and the on-line suite you plan to use.


Another important task which you must carry out before the final edit is to make sure that you are really entitled to use all the material you want to put in your program. You should have signed contracts and release forms for all the material you have recorded yourself. Do not assume that because you have recorded something you can do what you like with it. An example of where you cannot would be where a radio is playing in the background in one of your shots. You still need to get clearance to use the music from the radio.
For material you get from someone else - music, archive footage, newspaper photographs, etc. you will need copyright clearance. If you put it in the program without getting permission you could be faced with a hefty fee for use of the material, or a costly re-edit to take it out.
  • Nothing should go into the finished edit unless yo have agreement to use it, in writing.
  • You must keep a record of all music, including incidentally recorded music and specially composed music, that goes into your TV show or movie.

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