Night at the Movies

I have to say, this Bond movie thing has been an amazing learning experience. I put down video editing on my resume, because I enjoyed making small videos and used fairly basic tools to edit videos. I’ve always enjoyed putting together a story in a visual format, I guess I’m more of a visual person which probably explains why I also enjoy watching movies – though doesn’t explain why I’m not that keen on art. Anyway, after having worked on this movie for the past couple of weeks, I realised the crappy little things I was doing in my spare time back at uni is nothing compared to what you can do with video.

Since I knew I’d only have a few weeks to put this together, I started a 30-day trial for Adobe Premiere Pro, the creative cloud version. At first, it was completely overwhelming. There were so many buttons and panels, and menu options. To be honest, I’ve only used a few of the features so far, and I know that there’s so much more it can do. It makes me wish I had taken a video editing course while I was at uni, because there are a lot of words that I don’t understand, and it has mostly been trial-and-error with a few YouTube videos thrown in here and there.

I’ve done my own green-screening, which I’m really proud of! It’s not the greatest, as my “green screen” is a couple of 3m sheets of cloth I bought at Lincraft, so there are plenty of shadows and folds where the cloth didn’t hang very well from the wall.

Before:

After:

Ignore the big black rectangles, that’s just where my actors were standing. It’s not the greatest, but given everyone’s low expectations for this movie, I think it’s actually pretty good. Though you can see the obvious folds. I’m hoping that since only a few of the actors were involved in green screen scenes, everyone else won’t even realise that it was green-screened, so they won’t notice the folds. It kinda looks like it’s just part of the sea….

I’ve also mentioned this idea to a few people (and of course to everyone reading this blog). One of the people had a great suggestion, which I’ve now incorporated into my movie. I feel like I should credit him, but nobody else on my team will know who he is, so it seems a bit silly. I will credit him here instead – thanks, Steve!

In the interests of time, I’ve decided to limit myself to 10 minutes of footage. It does mean I’ve had to cut a few scenes a bit short, and cut out a couple of scenes entirely. The Bond + Bond girl sex scene has been scrapped, though mostly because the actor playing Bond doesn’t really want to do a sex scene, and I don’t think it’s appropriate to be watching one at work anyway. So it is a bit disjointed, because the Bond girl appears on screen for one scene (to show Bond where the cinema is), then just disappears, never to be mentioned again. I was going to have Bond mention her at the end, but I haven’t been able to work it in.

The most difficult parts to put together were the opening song (with the dancing naked silhouettes – which unfortunately, I didn’t get to include in my movie), and the gun barrel. I kinda lucked out with the gun barrel though, as I’m not the first one to be putting together my own Bond parody. I found a couple of YouTube videos, including one that linked to a pre-made Adobe After Effects project. You could just insert your own video, and music, line everything up, and that’s it!

The Adobe Creative Cloud trial also includes AE, which I’ve become familiar with over the course of my movie making. It has some cool text effects, including that type-writer effect. It feels like a super-powered version of PowerPoint, except instead of making a slideshow, you make a video (which, if you think about it, is just a really fast slideshow with sound!).

I’m actually super impressed with the Adobe suite. I wish I had had more time to go through the tutorials and stuff, but unfortunately, time is of the essence. By the time we return from Europe, my trial will be over, and I’ll have to give it up. If I could justify spending $30 a month to subscribe to the Creative Cloud for AE and PP, I’d definitely do it (plus, you get all the other Adobe goodies, including Photoshop (if you want PS only, it’s $10 a month)).

If the whole programmer thing doesn’t work out, and the security thing doesn’t work out either, maybe I could try my hand at making crappy movies.

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