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Newbie in cinematography : Having a question about sound and camera cuts.

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Michael D. Dennis
Newbie in cinematography : Having a question about sound and camera cuts.
on Nov 14, 2013 at 11:35:59 pm

Hello, I am having this question for quite some time and i decided to finally ask it. I'm not good at explaining so i'm just going to show you.







I know they record sound externally but how do they switch camera angles switching for character to character without interrupting sound, making it seem so fluid? in 0:40 - 0:50

I hope you get my point. Thanks.


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Mark Suszko
Re: Newbie in cinematography : Having a question about sound and camera cuts.
on Nov 15, 2013 at 12:21:45 am

I should be saying this in the editing forum but you asked it here.

They DO "interrupt", all the time; good editing hides it. Once you have a good track established in the audio, you can lock it off and do all the "L-cuts" and "J-cuts" you want in the picture.

But the movie example of yours is more complicated in that, this was possibly not one take seen from two simultaneous cameras, but several takes, from one camera, done one side at a time. What helps that to work is that pro actors are unbelievably consistent in their timing, and can deliver the lines the same way, take after take, while the camera moves around each time to get a different view of the same scene. That gives the editor multiple versions of both sides of each line, which she or he then lays up to match-cut on the timeline.

It's different for every editor: one might first concentrate on the words and finesse the dialogue track, (sometimes called a "radio edit"), then go back and shift the cut points on the relevant picture tracks. Another editor will concentrate on the best visual deliveries first; the expressions, posture, movement or stillness, the breathing and facial reactions, build up that sequence, regardless of overlapping dialog timing, then go back and make the audio work to fit.

Editing is both a process of addition and subtraction. I'm greatly over-generalizing here but Euro style editing IMO is mostly additive, that is, building up the sculpture from adding chunks of clay - and American style tends (over-generalizing) to be "subtractive": cutting away the extraneous parts, chipping away rock and leaving only the essential figure there. That's why IMO editors overseas were once called "joiners" and American editors were "cutters".

The best result of course comes from a mix of both.


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Michael D. Dennis
Re: Newbie in cinematography : Having a question about sound and camera cuts.
on Nov 15, 2013 at 1:36:13 am

[Mark Suszko] "They DO "interrupt", all the time; good editing hides it. Once you have a good track established in the audio, you can lock it off and do all the "L-cuts" and "J-cuts" you want in the picture.

But the movie example of yours is more complicated in that, this was possibly not one take seen from two simultaneous cameras, but several takes, from one camera, done one side at a time. What helps that to work is that pro actors are unbelievably consistent in their timing, and can deliver the lines the same way, take after take, while the camera moves around each time to get a different view of the same scene. That gives the editor multiple versions of both sides of each line, which she or he then lays up to match-cut on the timeline."



Thank you Mark for the detailed response. I want to achieve that effect using only one camera because i can't afford multiple cameras yet.

I was thinking of exactly what you described, taking one scene and filming it from both / multiple angles. But that leaves me with multiple audio tracks. I guess that depends of the actors. I am not sure about what or how to edit the audio.

Is there any other way of doing this just with one camera ?

I shall learn about j and l cuts now. Are there any other terms associated with this result i want to achieve? Just to know what should i search. Thanks


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Rick Wise
Re: Newbie in cinematography : Having a question about sound and camera cuts.
on Nov 15, 2013 at 12:24:34 am

Good, clean sound recording. Good sound and picture editing. Good use of music and sound effects.

Try to duplicate this scene with two friends, just a few lines. Maybe that will help you see how to do this.

Rick Wise
Cinematographer
San Francisco Bay Area
http://www.RickWiseDP.com


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Todd Terry
Re: Newbie in cinematography : Having a question about sound and camera cuts.
on Nov 15, 2013 at 3:20:58 am

[Michael D. Dennis] "...way of doing this just with one camera ? "

Yes, Michael, you can definitely do this with one camera. That scene was likely done with one camera. Pretty much the way most movies have been made for the last, oh, hundred years or so.

The vast majority of higher-end film projects (features and the like) have historically been single-camera productions. Higher-end TV as well. Really only of late have features seen much in the way of multi-camera productions, and those are largely things like Judd Apatow comedies where improvisation happens with a lot of dialog (and even entire scenes) which would make single-camera coverage darn near impossible. Television often uses multiple camera today, even with what are typically still considered single-camera shows (as opposed to conventional multi-camera shows shot on stage), in this case it is done for speed during tight schedules. Done a lot too in action scenes, for obvious reasons.

In the Star Trek clip, while that might have been multi-camera (who knows?), it could just as easily (and probably was) single-camera. Even if it was multi-, it wasn't a true live cut. All of the audio in that section that you reference came from the master take on Benedict Cumberbatch, and none of it came from the take shooting Chris Pine. Watch the back of Cumberbatch's head very closely when the shot cuts to Kirk. His head movements match with the dialog very closely... almost perfect. Almost. It still isn't perfectly exact (it's actually quite a bit better than the vast majority of dialog in reverse shots like that that you'll see). So when you are seeing him talk and looking at the back of his head, that dialog is actually from another take. He's either matching his performance very closely, or the editor adjusted the timing in the audio performance (there was a pause in there) to make it match. Either way, it works.

It's all about the editing, and in this case primarily about the audio editing... but it's done all the time. The typical feature will have dozens and dozens of scenes in it that are just as complex or even much more so than this one.

T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com



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Gary Huff
Re: Newbie in cinematography : Having a question about sound and camera cuts.
on Nov 18, 2013 at 12:30:07 am

[Todd Terry] "In the Star Trek clip, while that might have been multi-camera (who knows?)"

Since Into Darkness was shot on 70mm, I would bet it is single cam.


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Todd Terry
Re: Newbie in cinematography : Having a question about sound and camera cuts.
on Nov 18, 2013 at 4:43:18 am

[Gary Huff] "Since Into Darkness was shot on 70mm... "

Actually only specific IMAX shots were 70mm. I didn't see the movie, but I doubt that scene was one. The bulk of the film, I believe, was Panny Millenium and Arri 435-ES, but there were even some RED shots in there.

No matter, any camera format can be either single- or multi-camera. I'm betting that scene was single camera though... there wouldn't really be any decent reason to shoot that scene multi-camera.

There are other clues, too. Mostly, the lighting is different in the two setups... obviously that is one of the huge benefits of single-camera, you can light ideally for each camera position, not light in a way that is "good enough" for all camera positions. In Pine's shot, the key is predominately to his right. In Cumberbatch's shot, the key is to his right as well... an impossibility since they are facing each other.

Also, right at :34 there is a head movement that crosses an edit that doesn't match perfectly. Oh, it's more than good enough, just not as exact as if it were all multi-camera from the same take (not that it still couldn't be multi-camera, just edited from different takes).

Pretty sure it's single-camera, though.

T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com



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John Fishback
Re: Newbie in cinematography : Having a question about sound and camera cuts.
on Nov 15, 2013 at 8:54:45 pm

Here's a tutorial about L-cutting.





John

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