Best way to edit conversation angles at

Go Back   DV Info Net > Apple / Mac Post Production Solutions > Final Cut Suite

Final Cut Suite
Discussing the editing of all formats with FCS, FCP, FCE

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old August 27th, 2005, 05:20 PM   #1
Regular Crew
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Indianapolis Indiana
Posts: 109
Best way to edit conversation angles

I recorded several takes of multiple angles of a conversation between two people. I also got close ups and mid shots. I am trying to find an easy way to edit this so I am going back and forth between the actors, angles and shots.

I thought of doing multiclip editing, but each take was a little different and I wouldn't be able to keep them in sync.

I thought of bringing sections of each clip down as I worked through the sequence, but that seems to take way too long and isn't very efficient. It also doesn't let me try different angles and takes quickly.

I've just started in FCP5 on the mac. Does anyone have a favorite/easy way to do this type of editing?


Kelly Wilbur is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 27th, 2005, 05:28 PM   #2
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Mays Landing, NJ
Posts: 11,461
Sorry, I guess I'm not sure what you're asking. Is there only one audio track and multiple cameras? Or multiple takes of the same scene? Why is the audio a problem?

I shoot our opera performances on two nights. I cover a wide shot one night and do closeups the next. I've gotten to where I can edit these together very quickly. Here's my procedure (using FCP 4.5, so no multi-cam support).

1. Get everything captured. I create one sequence for each night and drop all the clips into them.

2. On a very wide shot you generally can't see lips moving well enough to matter, so as a default I pull the audio from the closeup night.

3. But if it's a medium shot then I have to splice the audio between both nights. For a long time I assumed this wasn't possible without calling attention to itself, but I finally got bold enough to try. I found I could do it without much trouble, and this is with a full orchestra and people singing. You just have to zoom way in and carefully make your cuts at a good point.

4. So when I assemble the final product, I create a 3rd sequence. I then go to the sequences from each of the two nights and razor blade out the segments I want (with or without audio as described above). I then select that section, click on the final sequence, position the playhead correctly and paste.

5. My final sequence has 2 video tracks and 4 audio tracks to help facilitate aligning these cuts with precision.

Now I'm sure that some purists will gasp at this kludgy way to do things, but it works for me and it''s fast....
Boyd Ostroff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 27th, 2005, 05:30 PM   #3
Inner Circle
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: San Mateo, CA
Posts: 3,840
Different people will have different approaches. The book "Transitions" about editing has a lot of good examples.

I suggest... making a radio cut first. That is, LISTEN to the dialogue. Cut it together based on the best sounding delivery of all the lines, regardless of take and angle.

Close your eyes and LISTEN to the scene. When it sounds good. LOOK at the scene. Do you have some mismatched actions? Maybe what you need on a given line, is the other characters REaction. Maybe a cutaway will cover a mismatched moment, but keep the dialogue flowing. Then start cutting the images, leaving the sound intact.

Another way, especially if the scene is action or prop heavy, where the actors are doing some sort of physical business, is to cut the action smoothly, regardless of the dialogue, then go back and lay in the right audio. Believe it or not, this can be harder than the other way.
Richard Alvarez is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 27th, 2005, 05:42 PM   #4
Regular Crew
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Indianapolis Indiana
Posts: 109
Richard and Boyd,

Thank you both for your quick responses. Just to clarify my question...this is a question of logistics...of physically being able to manipulate the clips into the sequence and being able to easily see all the possibilities.

I do have audio for each take that is similar but not exact.

Boyd, I never thought of making multiple sequences.

Richard, are you suggesting just taking the audio out of some clips and editing that together first? That does sound like a good idea, but my actors were somewhat free with their lines, so it might be a nightmare going back and finding the matching video for places where there is too much of a difference between the lips and the sound.

I welcome more responses. Here is my exact situation:

Conversation is 8 minutes at a table between two characters. Sometimes I picked up outside noises and I will have to edit around those. Here is the footage I have:

Wide shots both actors, multiple takes
Close ups both actors, multiple takes
Some cutaways and special sequences (dolly shots), multiple takes

I need to put this all together into one sequence. What is your workflow? Do you mark the clips for dialogue first? Do you just start with clips you think are your best takes and razor them together in the sequence? Do you do a multiclip and try to edit small sections in real time?


Kelly Wilbur is offline   Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

Omega Broadcast
(512) 251-7778
Austin, TX

(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

(800) 238-8480
Glendale, CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > Apple / Mac Post Production Solutions > Final Cut Suite

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:14 PM.

DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2015 The Digital Video Information Network