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Old April 28th, 2009, 08:15 AM   #1
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Make a video look like it was shot in a single take?

Hi folks,

I have a project coming up in Mid-may where I need to make a 3-minute video look like it was shot in a single take. The basic idea is that the camera will continually follow a pair of characters as they walk and talk through the streets of London and surrounding country side. But we'll be travelling to lots of different locations. It will be clear that we're moving to lots of different locations and so the "single take" trick should work as a visual gag (because it's physically preposterous). Some tricks that I've read about but haven't tried out yet:

1) Swipe past a foreground element (like a lamp post) which creates a couple of frames of black - hide the transition in this "black hole"

2) Push the camera into an extreme close up on one of the characters so none of the background is visible and then pull back out in the new location.

3) Bring the camera down low so the frame only consists of the characters against the sky

4) Deliberately flare the lens to hide the transition in the flare

Any other clever tricks anyone knows about?!?

Thanks loads,
Jack Kelly is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 28th, 2009, 08:23 AM   #2
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You could pan really fast at the end of a take to have some blur to make a transition in. Just start the next take with a quick pan from the same spot to the new stuff.

Or you could show pan the camera to show something without moving objects, then cut and start the next take from the same spot and just pan away.

With all of these making sure the light stays consistent will be really important.
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Old April 28th, 2009, 08:42 AM   #3
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This is sort of interesting because you are suggesting that the joke is that the locations are obviously different, which leads me to think that any transition you make should be somewhat hokey (draw attention to itself) rather than seamless to continue the joke.

Thus it would seem that the most obvious sorts of transitions like #1 and #4 are the best, where you do sort of a "bad job" of it (where it is obviously not meant to be slick and invisible). Have a foreground cross through the frame, but not match up all that well; do the flash frame gag (the classic version is someone taking a picture, with a cheesy version of a flash in post) but maybe even have the characters switch places in the two segments so that they jump in the frame after you return from the flash. I hope I'm not reading the tone wrong.

BTW #2 and 3 would be relatively easy to do if you wanted them to look hokey, but not that easy if you wanted them to look slick! (morphing, match framing etc).
Charles Papert
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Old April 28th, 2009, 12:22 PM   #4
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How about go into slowed down motion, with a lot of motion blur showing, and hide the transition here.

For example, closeup up on face that suddenly turns and the camera then quickly pans to see what is being seen.... all done in slow motion, the slow motion continuing with the new shot, then going back to normal speed.
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Old April 28th, 2009, 01:08 PM   #5
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I've done quite a few car chases for theatrical use - actors in a dummy car with projected speeded up sequences, and doing daft cuts such as going down a road then appearing on a roller coaster, that kind of stuff - and all you need to do is find suitable cut points - so blurred background in pans, passing objects all that kind of stuff works fine. You can also do disolves when something in the foground has the viewers attention - so in my case, you are following a car - it stops at traffic lights at an intersection. In the edit cut the sequence at the frame the car stops, chop out the stationary part, the cut back in just as the car moves off - if you put a 4 or 5 frame disolve over the join, the car looks fine - people at the sides kind of disolve out, but you don't notice.
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Old April 29th, 2009, 09:31 AM   #6
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Can you film the people walking (eg on treadmills) against a green screen, then add the backgrounds in post? No - perhaps that's too simple for the effect you're trying to get.
Canon XH A1; Canon XF100; Nikon D800
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