Storyboarding “Voiceless” the Movie
I’ve just completed the 5 month task of storyboarding the entire film. What is “storyboarding”?
Wiki says… "Storyboards are graphic organizers in the form of illustrations or images displayed in sequence for the purpose of pre-visualizing a motion picture, animation, motion graphic or interactive media sequence. "
How does the process work?
First, I map out each frame of the entire story. (I used a software program called “Storyboard Artist Studio” which a generous ministry supporter donated to our film.)
Here are some screenshots to give you an idea (click the image for an enlarged view):
I framed and sequenced every shot, “coverage” and all, within the software. This not only allows me to be ultra prepared to shoot and discuss the vision with the crew, but it lets me think through all the movement in the scene, how it will play out in real time and play the movie that’s in my head to see if what I’m thinking will really work or not.
I broke the storyboard files down into Act I, II and III then, after about 20-30 run throughs, I made tweaks and printed them all out. (This is me, happy to finally get these babies done…)
With over 3500 frames, this took up about 1200 printed pages with 3 frames per page. Next I ran through the pages manually, made notes and made changes. Finally, the next step, is to complete the “animatic”.
Wiki says, an animatic is: …At its simplest, an animatic is a series of still images edited together and displayed in sequence with a rough dialogue and/or rough sound track added to the sequence of still images (usually taken from a storyboard) to test whether the sound and images are working effectively together.
I began the animatic by exporting all the 3500 frames into FinalCut Pro. Taking the frames and timing them, adding dialog boxes, transitions, etc., and trying to simulate the action as much as possible without actual actors moving, talking and other audio.
It’s amazing how much “cutting” and trimming is done within the animatic compared to just the storyboard.
The cool thing, is the animatic reveals a general idea of what you can expect to see when filming (not to mention giving you a timing, shot, theme and design blueprint for the crew when pre-production time comes.)
But that’s not all… Once the animatic is done, the “real” storyboarding begins. An authentic storyboard artist will then take the animatic and the storyboards that I’ve created, and re-do them down to the umpteenth detail, down to clothes, make-up, shadows, lighting, set design, mood, character uniqueness, etc.
Once these are done, they become the “set bible” - meaning, we’ll use them as the basis of the entire production. Keeps everyone on the same page, a smooth production (yeah right) and most importantly, the vision of the film crystal clear.
For more information on “Voiceless” please go www.voicelessthemovie.com