Whether you are planning a low-budget video or a big film production, these 5 main stages of film production apply to any film and its success is linked to each one of these steps. So let’s start with the first stage.
Stage 1 of Film Production: Development
Before you start filming, you need to make sure you have a clear idea of what you will do. This stage, in fact, includes imagining your video, writing a script and/or a storyboard, organising and planning your film project.
It is the perfect time to make sure you have a clear understanding of what your message is and who is your audience (and their demographics) before you start filming. Who are you looking to create the video for in the first place? What is its purpose? Answering these questions can help you have a clear directions on what to include in your film. As a practical example, in case of a school video, you need to know whether the film will be marketed towards children or their parents.
During this stage of the film production, you need to make sure your project is viable and make a note of everything you’ll need to realise it, such as the budget, the subjects/cast, the location, any props or costumes.
Stage 2 of Film Production: Pre-Production
The second stage is actually procuring all the assets that you listed during the development phase. During pre-production, you need to know where you are filming your shots, whether you need permission, the cast, the crew, the budget, etc. The better you can prepare during the development and pre-production stages, the easier filming will be during the production phase.
Stage 3 of Film Production: Production
Now it is time to get the camera rolling and start filming. It may surprise you but, despite being the core of your film project, production is often one of the shortest phases in filmmaking. Why? Most, if not all crew members are busy during the production stage as, very often, the project run on a strict schedule, and the longer it takes more expensive the film becomes. That’s why the development and pre-production stages are so important, they help have a nice structure to optimise the time, location, cast and crew.
Stage 4 of Film Production: Post-Production
Once you are satisfied with your shots, you can move to the post-production phase where the footage gets reviewed and edited. The editing sets up the pace of the video. At this stage, sound/music and visual effects get added, and the visual quality of the frames can be improved using colour correction. Once the video is edited, it is ready for distribution.
Despite its name, post-production can happen in conjunction with filming.
Stage 5 of Film Production: Distribution
Finally, your film is ready to be seen. This stage is actually crucial for your message to reach your target audience. For many people distribution means distributing a film in cinemas, on television, or on online streaming platforms. What kind of distribution a film gets can depend on its quality and the pull of the filmmaker or studio.
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