Misadventures and things learned in the Central Florida AND Los Angeles Film, TV, and video industry as a producer, director, writer, production manager, and assistant director.
Saturday, February 6, 2010
What's The Real Deal On Film and TV Student Reels
What Makes A Strong Reel?
a. The reel tells a narrative that is thematic and makes sense. Many students spread out their material in pieces to make it seem like they've done more. This is counterproductive. For example, if a student had shot a commercial, a short film, and a music video, then that student should group together these different projects instead of breaking them apart and spreading them through out the reel.
b. Reels should be no longer than 3 minutes.
c. The reel should be bookended at the front and the back with the Name, Title, Phone Number, e-Mail, and Website of the student and these "title cards" should be read at least 5 times at a normal pace b/f the video of the reel begins. You're basically giving a viewer time to read, digest, and write down your info.
d. If a student is pitching him or herself as a producer, director, director of photography, and/or editor, then the student should indicate what he or she did on each segment in the reel. He or she should also "lower third" the camera used (this goes for DPs).
e. If a student is showcasing an editor's reel, then he or she must re-cut material to music in a rhythmic and paced manner. Simply plugging in chunks of previously edited sequences to music isn't enough. Editors should re-edit to music.
f. Editors must also demonstrate their ability to color correct. This is done by showing before and after video that has been color corrected. Editors should know what this means.
g. Students should put their best - and only their best work - on a reel. Less is more. 1:30 of excellent work is better than 3:00 of mediocre work.