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Putting a video onto a TV screen in a clip

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Michael West
Putting a video onto a TV screen in a clip
on Apr 27, 2018 at 6:46:54 pm

Hello all:
I need to edit a video onto a TV screen in a clip.
The scenario is God is watching TV and changing channels.
The actual on-screen time won't be so long that motion tracking will be necessary (so I'm told by my second-time-directing-director).....(but then, I am a second-time-movie-editor)....
The whole film is only 10 minutes.

Would it be easier to green screen the TV, then add the "program" later, or is there a way for me to drop a video into the TV in the clip?
Or has someone come up with a miracle filter/program that does that type of thing with the flick of a mouse?

Thanks to all in advance.
Michael West


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Mark Suszko
Re: Putting a video onto a TV screen in a clip
on Apr 30, 2018 at 3:53:28 pm

The green screen is only part of the approach; it alone won't give you the perspective warps, only a clean place to put the replacement video, which may look weird if the apparent angles don't match up. And spill or reflection on the set from the green onto surrounding objects can make the comp more difficult.

My preferred approach would be to not put green on the screen at all, but either a flickering blue-white, or nothing at all, just the black screen and natural reflection of the glass. Then use the distort tool and feathered masks to corner-pin your new video into the screen and warp it to match. Then you change the blending mode and opacity so the glass reflection comes thru in the new video, and that sells that it's coming out of the TV instead of being pasted-on.

Why I would use the randomly-flickering white or bluish-white as an on-set "practical" effect is that, once the screen gets covered, the footage under the mask will still throw ambient light around the set the same way your finished replacement video would, a "3-d" effect that would cost you time and work to replicate in post, when you can get it for free on set as a "practical" effect. The TV is a practical light source on your set.

Again, it's about a subtle yet key detail that "sells" the replacement shot. You may not, as a viewer, understand consciously why it works better, just that it does.

When you shoot the over-the shoulder from behind the TV reversals of God watching, you can use that same flicker source feeding the screen as a keylight. If God wears glasses, you'd better run the actual replacement footage full-screen on the TV set if you can.


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Michael West
Re: Putting a video onto a TV screen in a clip
on Apr 30, 2018 at 4:52:32 pm

Mark: thanks so much for the tip. Now I have to sit at work for 6 hours before I can get home and play around 😂
Michael


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Mark Suszko
Re: Putting a video onto a TV screen in a clip
on Apr 30, 2018 at 5:06:10 pm

You're welcome. The distort tool and the multipoint mask will be your friends here. Avoid having to track matte this. If you shoot a locked down "plate" shot of the TV area, a little wide, at 2k or 4 K, then you can tighten the shot a little bit in post, and have room to add a little interesting simulated pan or dolly-like moves on it, without disrupting the composite.


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