Thursday, December 13, 2007

Documentary Narration Example

Here is another students example. I am looking for a few more complete sentences in the open and closing section, otherwise this is a great example!

Interviews: Producers on goals, structure, hopes, inspiration.
B-roll: Quick clips of footage from whole production (especially over the explanation of what OUAW is). The poster, checking off the days of the week, scripts, sign-up sheets etc.
Narration: Interviews function as narration/explanation. (“Once Upon a Week was originally done by the UW. The student receive a theme, and write a five minute play over the weekend. On Monday, the plays are looked at and cast. The only rehearsal is on Tuesday, and on Wednesday the plays are preformed.” etc.)
Music: “One Week” by BnL

Day 1: The Theme is Decided.
Interviews: None.
B-roll: Producers discussing theme; choosing cast sizes; list of writers and cast sizes. (B-10, Thursday)
Narration: “Day 1: Themes and Logistics” in text. The discussion will carry the story. Probably something along the lines of “On Thursday, the producers discuss cast sizes and the theme for the production.”

Day 2: The Theme is Announced.
Interviews: Writers on theme; play ideas. (SC people on Fri, SW people on Tues).
B-roll: Paper with theme on it, theme related things from the rest of the production. (Fri, various days.)
Narration: Story carried by interviews and opening text (Day 2: The Theme is Announced).

Day 3 & 4: Writing Scripts.
Interviews: None.
B-roll: Writers hard at work on scripts. Probably only one or two, since that would be hard to organize and I think the writers wouldn’t want to be bothered. (Both shots of writers and of what they’re writing). Possibly overlay of finished, typed scripts (shot on Mon).
Narration: Script writing guidelines. (see attached).

Day 5: Actors Are Cast.
Interviews: Writer’s reactions to writing a play in two days. (SC people on Mon, SW people on Tues.)
B-roll: Producers deciding, CU shots of finished scripts, shot of final cast list.
Narration: Something like “Producers discuss casting and draw up a final list.” Simple, direct.

Day 6: Casts Announced, Rehearsal.
Interviews: Actors, producers and directors (from SW and SC) on how it’s all going, what’s it like etc. (A total of 5-7 people).
B-roll: REHEARSAL. (Varying shots, different plays, etc.) Also, actors looking at the cast list, and a shot of the list.
Narration: None, except the title.

Day 7: Tech and Performance.
Interviews: Audience members about expectations/reactions. (5ish people, short interviews). Casual “interviews” with actors while they’re getting ready.
B-roll: Backstage preparations, the performance itself, shots of the house (filling up, emptying, etc), curtain…
Narration: None, except the title.

Interviews: 5-6 people, all different member of production, on the big “How did it go?” question.
B-roll: Footage from entire production, to match whatever the interviewees talk about.
Narration: None. The documentary will end with some memorable/sentimental answer from one of my interviewees.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Interview Questions

20 Questions.
At least two subject.
Ask lots of how and why questions.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Documentary Narration/Text/Organization

First, read this section on interview techniques here.

When you are done, please turn this assignment into the classes folder on the staff server using the naming convention_narration assignment.

Write three to four sentences describing topic in great detail . Give crucial information and history as needed. Feel free to use documented statistics.
For example, if you are doing a piece on gas prices then find out how expensive gas has been over the last twenty years. Why the change? What are the factors etc? Do cars get more or less miles per gallon?

Next, list at least five specific examples of of B-Roll you will use. Provide dates, locations, and shot type of the footage.
Will you use any footage from sources other than your own camera? If so, what will they be?

Again, if you are doing Gas prices you might want to show people filling up at the gas station, a shot or two of gas price signs, people driving cars, and money exchanging hands etc.

Narrate or use text to move from one interview to the next. If you do your interviews well, the interviews will tell the story and your narration will be minimal.
For today’s assignment, pretend you have three different examples and interviews for your topic.
What will you cover in this section? What will the audience learn? Please list the people who have interviewed or will interview and also list the B-Roll that will play underneath those interviews.

What did you conclude from your documentary (using both sides of course)? You aren't trying to prove a point here as this is more of a recap of what we saw in the body of your documentary.
What should the audience know that ties all the information together? What is next for your subject or subjects?
Your closing narration should be at least three to four sentences.

Again, drop this assignment in the classes folder. Hopefully this helps you organize your documentary.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Documentary Questions

1. What is your documentary subject?
2. Why did you choose this subject? Why would this be interesting for us to watch(two-three sentences)
3. What do you think your audience can learn from your documentary? (one-two sentences)
4. What type of B-Roll will your video need (three-four specific examples)
5. How will you make sure you can cover all sides of this subject? Who will you interview and where will you interview them? (two-three sentences)?

Please email me your responses with Video 3 or Video 4 documentary in the subject line.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Documentary Requirements Video 1 First Semester

Documentary Assignment for Video 1 and 2

3-6 min long
Interviews with good audio (no background noise)
Narration (voice over) or text that moves story along
B-Roll video (video shown while we hear interview or narration)
No jump cuts or continuity errors
Documentary will need a full page of interview questions , project goals, and scripted narration.

All projects must use the 30 Degree Rule, rule of thirds, proper headroom, leading the subject, framing, proper white balance, steady camera work, and show strong creativity. Also, please shoot and use many close-up shots, insert shots, and reaction shots as you can.

Due Dates
December 6/7: Treatment.
December 10: Cybercollege reading. There will be a quiz.
December 11/12: List of 20 different questions for interview subjects.
Decemeber 13/14: Scripted Narration and outline
Decemeber 18: Raw Footage 1: At least Four interviews and five minutes of B-Roll
January 3/4: Raw Footage 2: Four to five more interviews and 8-10 more minutes of B-Roll
January 14: Documentary Rough Draft Due: First Peer Edit Session
January 22/23: Final Peer Edit Session, Documentary Due at end of period. THIS DATE WILL NOT CHANGE. LATE WORK WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED.

Mr. Mitchell’s 4 Hints to create better documentaries
1. Keep the camera rolling
2. Research your topic…become an expert
3. Come prepared at interviews with a list of questions
4. Avoid bias in your story. Tell the facts and avoid taking sides.

Reading For Documentary Unit