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Had a video subtitled, but they're too fast to read...

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Corbin Gross
Had a video subtitled, but they're too fast to read...
on Jun 26, 2017 at 5:04:59 pm

Hey there, C'Cow.

I've got this recruiting video made of talking head interviews with about 70% B-roll overlay, advertising warehouse jobs across the country for an apparel wholesaler.

The intent was to interview and edit in English and then have Spanish and possibly French subtitles done.

Problem is though, now that it's come back from the subtitlers (not sure how this service works or what it's called, HR took care of that part), the HR guys are worried the subtitles aren't on long enough to read. I don't speak Spanish with any fluency, so I don't know if they're too fast or just right.

I don't have any experience editing for stuff that will be subtitled, do you guys have any links or anything I can check out for tips and suggestions?

I edit pretty tight, to try to keep up the energy and just 'cause I light that style. Are my cuts too fast? Are people's words squished together too much? Do you guys do anything different if your videos are going to be subtitled?

I'll provide a link to you folks can check it out if you have time. If there are any Spanish speakers out there, have a look and let me know what you think.

https://wetransfer.com/downloads/3246ee49fdb4acd2c13aa3f54122fe862017062616...

Thanks!

Corbin Gross | SANMAR
Photographer/Videographer | Marketing
22833 SE Black Nugget Road | Issaquah, WA 98029
206.727.5501 x5237
http://www.sanmar.com


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Mark Suszko
Re: Had a video subtitled, but they're too fast to read...
on Jun 28, 2017 at 4:27:48 pm

It always takes longer to say something in Spanish than it does in English. I learned by experience. This has to be accommodated in the planning before the shoot, so the shots have longer "handles" on them to help the timing work out. Ideally, you shoot a fully separate Spanish version to maximize production value and get the translations perfect. When you don't have that option, what remains are two choices: record them too fast so they fit the "hole", which is what you have, or, re-write the translation copy shorter so it fits the time. Neither is optimal. The re-write will miss details and nuances by virtue of the "compression".

A third option is, you pause the video any time the Spanish needs to catch up.


I don't think many people talk about this, I'd like to see some stats on it from somewhere, but I think a lot of YouTube viewers actually play their videos faster than normal. I know I can easily follow a lecture or "how-to" vid at up to twice the normal speed, when it's not a dramatic performance.

Fun fact: Laurel and Hardy Shot a number of their comedies TWICE; once in English, the second time, using Spanish read from cue cards. They didn't want anybody else dubbing over them, and it also showed a greater respect for a Hispanic audience segment, to customize their product instead of merely slapping a translation over it. Some old horror movies also used to do this: after the day shift went home, a second complete crew and Latino cast came in and worked on the same sets.

You know, there's the germ of a fun movie script in that story......


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Greg Ball
Re: Had a video subtitled, but they're too fast to read...
on Jul 5, 2017 at 4:58:06 pm

To Mark's point where he says that the difference in timing " has to be accommodated in the planning before the shoot, so the shots have longer "handles" on them to help the timing work out". That's not always true or possible.

We often translate client videos into other languages. Experienced translation companies will "adapt" the transcript properly and use certain words that give the same meaning, but in a shortened form. This allows us to keep the same timing of the original video, hit the key marks in the video, and have the subtitles read at a reasonable (readable) speed.

The mistake many people make is trying to translate their videos without understanding how the professionals do it. Just because someone can translate a print piece, does not mean they can properly translate a video and keep the proper timing intact.

Feel free to reach out to me if there's anything I can help you with.

Greg Ball, President
Ball Media Innovations, Inc.
https://www.ballmediainnovations.com


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Corbin Gross
Re: Had a video subtitled, but they're too fast to read...
on Jul 12, 2017 at 3:42:31 pm

Thanks for the input, guys.

I have no idea how experienced this company is who did the subtitles. That part was out of my hands. I know it's slower to read anything, so maybe it just comes down to digesting the words vs. listening to someone speak.

In the future I'll see what I can do about slowing down the edit a little to allow for the subtitles. Or possibly see what other companies we can work with for that part anyhow.

Corbin Gross | SANMAR
Photographer/Videographer | Marketing
22833 SE Black Nugget Road | Issaquah, WA 98029
206.727.5501 x5237
http://www.sanmar.com


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