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Wedding Video Length

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Aaron Cadieux
Wedding Video Length
on Mar 16, 2012 at 12:49:32 pm

Hello all,

I recently did a wedding. The finished video came out to be about 50 minutes long, and that includes the ceremony and reception. At 50 minutes, it's actually one of the shorter wedding videos I've done. The clients actually complained that they thought the video was too long. I was shocked. I think the video is a very tight 50 minutes. Any of you guys ever get this complaint before? Now I'm chasing the clients down asking what they want me to take out.



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Mark Suszko
Re: Wedding Video Length
on Mar 16, 2012 at 1:47:01 pm

I think it partially depends on the age of the couple, what their expectations are. The fact this surprise happened seems to indicate not enough communication and mutual understanding of expectations in the planning/ sign-up phase.

Did you not tell them about how long it was going to be, what was going to be left in and left out? This used to be part of my booking "spiel", describing in detail a list of what I will shoot. Most of my wedding vids wound up at 90 minutes to 2 hours long, including the reception. But I'm an oldster now, with an onion on my belt; I don't know what these crazy kids expect these days. I suppose in a twitter culture, everything is truncated, including sentimentality and history. Sure, they think they want just a 15 minute montage now, and perhaps you should have led off with that, but I think as they get into a few anniversaries, and later, have kids, they'll begin to appreciate having more material than just the montage.

I think what I'd do in this case is offer to re-edit a shorter montage, and append it to a DVD so they have the cut they want, plus a "Director's Cut". You'll likely have to eat the extra time this takes, since it wasn't in writing from the start. The upside is you probably still have the files on the system so there will be little time spent re-digitizing. You might also just import the existing DVD and simply do a cut-down from that, maybe, since you know ALL of those shots are already good.

Best of luck; let us know what shakes out.

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Brent Dunn
Re: Wedding Video Length
on Mar 20, 2012 at 3:48:21 pm

Did this include a highlight reel? Yeah, you have to be clear at the beginning and put as much in writing as possible.

That's actually a nice surprise, but it would have been better if they told you up front. The Short Form style of videos are getting popular. The total time is 20-30 minutes. It's kind of a hybrid of a highlight and documentary film.

If it's a simple edit, better to have a happy client, even though it'll take you longer. But I'd also ask what they want you to cut out.

I had the opposite happen recently. They wanted all the footage shot during the photo shoot and my creative footage I shot for the highlight film. They said, we paid for all this time, it seems we should be getting more footage. I just burned the RAW footage not used on a DVD and gave it to them. In the end they were happy.

Brent Dunn
Owner / Director / Editor
DunnRight Films
Video Marketing

Sony EX-1,
Canon 5D Mark II
Canon 7D
Mac Pro Tower, Quad Core,
with Final Cut Studio

HP i7 Quad laptop
Adobe CS-5 Production Suite

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