Subtitles Jan Ivarrson Subtitling for the Media 1992 Henrik Gottlieb Subtitling, a new university discipline 1991, etc. Irene Kovacic (Llubiana) Yves Gambier (Turku) Jorge Diaz (Roehampton) Pilar Orero (Barcelona)
Intertitles Two years later Frankenstein had discovered the mystery of life. Tiger – the bully of the jungle …. cruel ….bloodthirsty. + letters, signs, etc.
Intertitles 2 UNCLE TOMS CABIN 1927 Across two states – George Harris, ever on the trail of Lemul Proctor, the buyer of Little Harry. Moonlight bathing the old Kentucky home in radiance – romance in the winged and perfumed breezes of the night. Dunno whar dey is, Missy Liza
Subtitles over the years 1. photographed on cards and then together with film; 2. photo of whole film; 3. clichés printed on film; 4. laser – vaporises emulsion at correct point; 5. computer with time code.
Technical aspects 1 Script (but often transcription) translation adaptation composition (translate all written elements)
Technical aspects 2 Ideally there should be notes on the film itself, the characters, the original story, the cultural references, etc. – but there never is!!! (Minchinton)
Technical aspects 3 SPOTTING – where to insert the subtitles. in cue out cue spotting list.
Technical aspects 4 BACKGROUND white titles on dark background bottom of screen where there is least light and least action except in snow scenes, etc. (black box)
Technical aspects 5 DIMENSIONS width 2/3 of screen – centred height 15% of screen characters per line (28-38 on TV) (max. 68 or two lines of 20 m.)
Technical aspects 6 LINES 1 or 2 lines 2 lines avoids flash effect; generally better to have two one-liners together than two separate titles.
Technical aspects 7 TIME Film characters speak quicker than the average reader – but what is the average reader??? As it is necessary to also take in the visuals, etc., one line should remain on screen for at least FOUR seconds, and two lines for 6-8 seconds. Otherwise there is a danger of re-reading.
Technical aspects 8 GAP BETWEEN TITLES 3-8 frames or ¼ second. Viewers need a fraction of a second to identify speaker (fixation pause). Must not overlap scene change or shot change. Otherwise viewer reads title again (overlapping effect).
Technical aspects 9 SEGMENTATION Units must be syntactically and semantically complete. Never separate articles & nouns; prepositions & nouns, conjunctions & clauses, pronouns & verbs, compund verbs, adjectives & nouns, etc.
Technical aspects 9a (from CARO DIARIO) Non sapeva niente: come poteva immaginarsi che il giorno dopo per lui sarebbe cambiata la vita? He didnt know his life would change the next day He didnt know his life would change the next day
Technical aspects 10 DIALOGUE - Character One - Character Two - Hello, how are you? - None the better for seeing you! - (second part appears before it is spoken)
Technical aspects 11 PUNCTUATION Every language has a different prosody (rhythm of text, emphasis, irony, etc.) Fullstop to end title. Dots for hesitation, interruption … Exclamation and Question marks. Underlining. Italics – voice off, flashback, etc. Capitals for signs, posters, etc. Brackets (in arabic) or for deaf (train passing) # songs eg. #tralala
Readability The quality that makes possible the recognition of the information content of material when it is represented by alphanumeric characters in meaningful groupings, such as words, sentences or continuous text.
Fixation During reading our eyes do not move smoothly across the page … they make a series of jumps … … between the jumps the eyes remain relatively still, for about a quarter of a second, in what is referred to as a fixation.
Public view (from Too Close to Home : L.Barclay) A. …And he loved movies. But not the ones everyone else liked. He liked the ones with the words at the bottom. B. Subtitles. A. Thats right. Movies in different languages. He liked to watch those. He had an appreciation for things that other people didnt care much about.
Video Video Echo
Video Video Echo sub
Gottlieb on Subtitling Prepared communication using written language acting as an additive and synchronous semiotic channel as part of a transient And polysemiotic text
Written As such, subtitling differs from all other types of screen translation. Loss: reducing a language to writing. Gain: introduction of extraneous features that are not part of spoken discourse. Cf. Pro rata.
Additive Verbal material is added to the original maintaining the source language discourse. Intralingual/Interlingual
Immediate All discourse is presented in a flowing manner, beyond the control of the viewer. This is changing with the introduction of video, DVD, repetition in 24-hour TV news programmes, interactive TV (press your red SKY button), etc.
Synchronous The original film and the translated dialogue are presented simultaneously, not even like simultaneous interpreting, where there are dangers.
Polymedial Multimodal At least two parallel channels are used to convey the total message of the original.
The Gottlieb Strategies TRANSFER EXPANSION CONDENSATION DECIMATION DELETION PARAPHRASE IMITATION TRANSCRIPTION DISLOCATION RESIGNATION
Transfer Complete translation Not word-for-word. Hi, honey. Ciao, dolcezza.
Expansion Give extra information, for example in the case of culture bound terms. eg. In the Name of the Father: I.R.A.
Condensation Say the same thing in a shorter way, If only I could… Magari…
Decimation Remove completely a part of the discourse. Si ma guardi cosha combinato, guardi che casino, porca puttana… But look at this bloody mess (from La Bionda di S. Rubini)
Deletion Remove entire text. Would you like a cigarette?
Cf. sign language for the deaf Ultimo confronto stasera di questa coppa dei campioni della politica in cinque giornate che si è disputata nelle ultime settimane su RAI uno e partita di ritorno tra Silvio Berlusconi e Romano Prodi. Stasera, su RAI uno, ultimo dibattito politico della campagna elettorale tra Silvio Berlusconi e Romano Prodi.
Paraphrase Say the same thing in a different way. For example Kramer versus Kramer Ebbets Field…. monopattini…
Imitation Repeat verbatim. For example, names, quotes, etc. Janes Bond, Fifth Avenue, cest la vie.
Transcription Copy any speech defects, etc. A fish called Wanda They dont sh..sh..sh.. Non c..c..c..
Dislocation Shift from say song to prose.
Resignation Defeated by culture bound reference. For example Friends … a big foam finger. … una birra gigantesca.
Transfer Caro Diario Destate a Roma i cinema sono tutti chiusi. Summer in Rome, the cinemas are all closed.
Expansion Caro Diario caseina di capra, groviera. gorgonzola… goats cheese, Swiss cheese, gorgonzola…
Condensation Caro Diario Ora è tutto cambiato, ora è tutto veramente cambiato. Everything has really changed.
Decimation Caro Diario Agenti di borsa, deputati, assessori, giormalisti,… Brokers, congressmen, journalists,…
Deletion Caro Diario Te lo dico io perché. Perché odio gente … come te! I hate people like you!
Paraphrase Caro Diario Ormai ha paura di rimettermi in gioco. Im afraid to re-think my life.
Imitation Caro Diario Quam juvat – quantè bello! Quam juvat – how beautiful!
Transcription Caro Diario Ca-pi-sci quel-lo che ti dico? Un-der-stand what Im say-ing?
Resignation Caro Diario Garibaldi qui ci ha fatto la resistenza. Garibaldi fought here.
Moretti monologue: Italian Destate a Roma, i cinema sono tutti chiusi. Oppure ci sono … film dellorrore come Henry. Oppure qualche film italiano. Ormai ho paura di rimettermi in gioco.. Sono un vigliacco. Ma cosa è successo in tutti questi anni? Ditemelo voi. Ti si stanno imbiancando le tempie. Incominciano a pesare le sconfitte..
Moretti monologue: English Summer in Rome, the cinemas are closed. (T) All you can see is … (P) horror films like Henry, Portrait of a Serial Killer (E) Or some Italian films. (T) Im afraid to re-think my life. (P) Im a coward. (T) What happened. Tell me?(D) Your temples are turning white.(T) The weight of defeat. (C)