How Long To Edit a Reality Show?
I'm working on a project that's taking me longer than I'd like it to, and probably longer than my company would like it to. So I thought I'd ask ya'll what your opinion is.
I'm a producer, shooter, editor sort of person. I produced, directed and edited a 3-cam reality show style web video over the course of 30 days. It includes about 6 hours of 3-cam footage + external audio, and a blogs shot on an iPhone for every day, 27 days.
Pulling selects, putting everything together, scoring, etc...looks like it's going to take me about 8 days for a 20 minute rough cut.
This doesn't include days where I'm in meetings and lose 1.5 hours, an hour here, a half hour there.
I feel like a crazy person that it's taking me as long as it's taking me.
Does anyone have experience in making reality TV? Can you tell me what usually goes into your edit schedules? Let me know any and all thoughts you have.
Well, for an hour long show (45 min)...where we already have story producers who've pulled together rough scene work...meaning they've already combed the hundreds of hours of footage to narrow it down to smaller sections...it takes 6 editors 5 days to make a rough cut. So that's 30 days right there, just for the rough cut, and for already roughed out scenes. Then a few days (all editors) for the fine cut, and more for the locked pic. An hour long show might take two months of edit time to get done (which when we have 6 editors, takes two weeks).
Again, this is with someone (story producer) already watching ALL of the footage, and making VERY rough scenes. That us editors need to watch the footage around to make sure we get the good moments.
And this includes all the time it takes to cut the music and SFX in, as our music is THE music used.
Reality shows are not quick edits. The more footage you have to deal with, the longer it takes.
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Well this makes me feel a lot better. Thanks!
it's none of my business to respond to a post like this, but I know Shane, and I work for a bunch of reality show companies, so I figured "what the heck - I will make my stupid comments here" -
Reality shows typically are notorious for hiring low priced labor to produce, shoot, and edit their shows. (exceptions to this are Bunim Murray in LA). The workflow that Shane has described is accurate. From reading your post for the second time, I believe that you are working for a VERY LOW BUDGET company that is producing a reality show, and "all of a sudden" YOU are personally responsible for doing ALL the work that is typically done by a team of "slave labor" that typically works for free (except for free morning bagels, and maybe lunch). You should not "feel better" after reading Shanes post. "They" found someone that is very qualified, and is willing to work for a low wage, with all kinds of crazy hours, all by yourself, so that they could complete their reality show, and not have to even buy free bagels for an "intern staff". So YES, you are suffering beyond belief, and it is unfair to you.
Just before I wrote this response, I asked my wife (due to todays insane politically correct climate) "did I sexually abuse you when I first met you" - to which she responded "YES". So I believe that #1, Shane Ross sexually abused me at some NAB show (I was too drunk to remember) and #2 - yes, you are being overworked and abused in your talent and ability to produce and edit a professional show (because your producers are TOO cheap to buy bagels for free interns (story producers) to log the footage from this show, before you even see it). YOU ARE ABUSED !
Rescue 1, Inc.
[Bob Zelin] "So I believe that #1, Shane Ross sexually abused me at some NAB show (I was too drunk to remember)"
I was too drunk too. Those AJA parties with open bars are dangerous
[Bob Zelin] "#2 - yes, you are being overworked and abused in your talent and ability to produce and edit a professional show"
This is true. And if they complain that it takes too long, you can remind them about all the skills and talent and TIME that is needed to make a good show. And always threaten to leave...that tends to get attention, mainly after they hired a cheaper person to come in and a worse product is made as the result.
(PS, I think Bob was drinking when he wrote this. Although I'm not sure, he's always this ornery.)
Little Frog Post
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def
This could be the beginning of a very useful thread, outlining for newbies like myself all the best practices for doing such "reality" projects.
They can't complain when it's one person doing a task that is normally 5-person job. The power of a team and shared storage in these kind of productions is that, to an extent, all the sections of the show can be worked on concurrently. There's an old saying about how can a person eat an elephant - one bite at a time. But five people, all biting at the SAME time, can eat the elephant a lot quicker. This is why you see umpteen hundred names in the credits of a Marvel Movie: there's too much work for one team, one COMPANY - to do in the allotted time, so the FX work gets divided among a lot of specialized companies, each doing a part they do best, or fastest, or both.
This is not the kind of project that is efficiently done by a single editor - although, the single editor will have a singular, consistent vision and overview of everything. Really, these specific shows are much more of a "team sport", with one person overseeing the work of the others on their individual segments, to keep them in line with the overall plan.
I look forward to any tips from those who have done productions of this type, especially regarding the organization of the work and division of the tasks.