Follow the 5W1H Rule Who What When Where Why How Have a Main Character of attention (Can also be objects)
Documentary Film Making a short documentary takes just as much effort as a longer one; you still need to compile the material, sort through it, and get the right angle on the story. Here are some pointers for the best technique to adopt when putting together a short documentary.
Documentary Film - Meaning It is a nonfictional motion picture intended to document some aspect of reality, primarily for the purposes of instruction or maintaining a historical record. It is based on facts. Acts as an educational tool for general audience.
Key Steps to Making Documentaries Tell a story you care about Research Make a Plan Write a Script Create a Shot List Start Shooting Begin Editing Check Legal and Copyright Issues Distribute!
Tell a story you care about Start with a subject that excites you. If you’re lukewarm about the subject matter, chances are, the final movie will be too. Make a documentary you’re passionate about and makes sense to YOU.
Research Learn everything you can about your documentary subject. Sometimes the story lines are obvious, sometimes not. Do a lot of digging and follow leads. This is where you put your reporter hat. Gather facts and search for leads on interesting characters and story lines. Watch some documentary films Enjoy them Analyse them Pay attention to details Listen to Narratives
WRITE A TREATMENT Summary of Documentary Goal/Purpose of Film Outline your script so that you can make sure that it has all of the good short story components. In your outline describe each section of your film, for a short film the outline does not need to be longer than 300 Words.
Make a Plan Create an outline. Think about HOW you’re going to tell your study. What’s the structure? The Style? Is there existing footage or photos that help your study or will everything need to be shot brand new?
DEVELOP CHARACTER MOTIVATIONS Characters without motivation or a personality are’t really characters.
WORK WITH DETAIL IN MIND Storyboard Individual Scenes Show the Finished Product to your Friends, Family, Teachers, etc.
INCLUDE A DRAMATIC EVENT IN THE NARRATIVE One that involved all of the characters.
Write a Script Choose a Subject – What you want to make a Documentary about Make sure that you write attractive to your viewers. Once all of the footage is shot and you’ve gathered the various production elements, time to start organizing it into a script. Type out your script Develop your characters with different personalities Your movie won’t be interesting if everyone acts and talks the same.
INTERVIEWING Plan questions. The easiest way of doing this and keeping focus is to write the 5W1H Questions. Subject must be confortable around the camera and open and honest. Talk to them before filming, you could talk for half an hour or more to make the subject confortable around you.
Create a Shot List This is a list of the footage and interviews you’ll need to make your movie. Think if it as your list of “ingredients”. Depending on the complexity of your project, you may not need to create a budget. PRIOROTIZE SCENES From your outline identity priority scenes
CREATE A SCHEDULE This will keep you focused on your project. Get a diary. Identify what days you and your crew is available. Jot down priority scenes. Film interviews early on.
Start Shooting Brainstorm the worst things that could happen. Have plan B Are you making documentaries for the web, mobile devices, television, theater? May be a combination? Keep in mind HOW your movie will be viewed because that can dictate your shooting and storytelling style.
LOG FOOTAGE Before you process to writing your film, watch all your footage through, writing notes on every shots stating if it works. If there are technical problems then note it down This will save your a lot of time when editing.
Begin Editing This is actually one of enjoyable parts of the process. It’s like solving a puzzle! Things Required Video Editing Computer Video Editing Software Video Editing Tips Video Editing Digital Essentials
Check Legal and Copyright Issues Even though this is near the end of the list, it should actually be something you keep in mind from the very beginning and throughout the ENTIRE Filmmaking process.
Distribute! Of course now that you’ve done all the work making your documentary, you want people to see it, right? Never before have there been so many options for filmmakers to showcase their work. From theaters to television to DVD to the web, a new world of distribution is being invented right in front of our eyes. Making documentaries and showcasing your work is easier than ever!