Before starting on my final product, I carried out research into film openings of the genre I would be focusing on – teen romantic dramas – carefully noting what was important for me to have and what was conventional for the opening. My film title “Breaking” is conventional as it does not really give too much away about what the film is about but still gives away connotations of sadness. Twilight (2008) does not really suggest what the film will be about, although twilight is the time of day just before it goes dark giving a kind of suspense to the title as it suggests that something will happen except the audience do not know what it will be. Breaking does this as breaking involves something or someone – the title causes the audience to wonder what is going to happen in the film – who or what is going to break? In the films I looked at the convention of the opening of the film seemed to be outside or close enough to outside. The opening credits conventionally took place while the main character was moving from one place to another. Even though in the story of my film, the main character is not going to move house, she is still walking from one place to another implying progression along with the music that was always present at the start during the opening credits. I challenged the very opening as there is not usually a scene where the main character is actually talking to another character before the opening credits. If this happens then the opening credits are usually over the top of this scene with the music, or the main character will have a voice over.
In Twilight (2008) there was a voice over of the main character in the opening and it is used often in other teen films such as John Tucker Must Die (2006) and Mean Girls (2004). It gets the audience to feel closer to the character as she is talking directly to them and therefore would create sympathy. The opening scene with the other girls pushing the main character around and acting harsh towards her meant that it was important that she had sympathy. This would also hopefully get the audience to be more attracted to the film. It is suggested that this film would be a dramatic teen romance as in the beginning the main character is talking to what appears to be her lover and throughout it is made clear to the audience that she has lost him and wants to get him back. She says in the voice over “I‟m going to get him back.” which implies the rest of the film will be about her trying to do this. It is a dramatic opening and the title also gives connotations of drama. The whole sequence is quite serious with the antagonists being cold and harsh towards the main character. All of the cast are made up of teenagers and so it will be a teen film. This is all conventional of a romantic teen drama. The lighting is dark which is conventional. All of the films I looked at had quite dark lighting in the opening. Twilight begins in a forest which is very dark – mostly focusing on high contrast – I made the contrast higher in the special effects for my opening. A walk to Remember (2002) does not need to do this as their opening scene is set at night.
In teen films the settings are conventionally places where a teenager normally goes during the day – their house, school, their friends houses e.t.c In the beginning I did have an opening scene set at the main characters house, although I challenged the second part by having the setting outside the front of some shops by a main road where there was significant space for teenagers to hang around. I thought this would be quite dark and because of all the grey concrete around it would have a gloomy impression. The costumes used were stereotypical and what teenagers normally wear. The antagonists wore heavy make up and tight, slightly revealing clothing which is conventional for antagonist teen girls. The main character wears more loose clothing and natural make up to make her contrast with the antagonists, which is conventional for the main character. The camera shots are conventionally stable with a mixture of shots containing movement. I have gone by convention with the shots by containing a mixture of different ones. When the main character walks in at the start there is a tracking low angle shot of her which holds position after she sits down. A tracking shot was used multiple times in the opening of Twilight. The transitions are conventionally simple, perhaps with some fade through blacks used. I have gone by convention here, and also with the opening credits how each one fades in and out.
In contrast to the For my film opening I was aiming to represent antagonists, the modern stereotypical teenagers. Before main character is filming, I asked the cast to wear clothes that wearing a scarf were in fashion and very casual at the same and more time such as jeans and low cut tops. I asked loose/casual for the more „evil‟ characters to wear make- clothing implying up as teenagers are usually associated with this. The main character wore minimal more she is more natural make-up as this made them look more insecure than like they had natural beauty rather than them. relying on cosmetic products. Female characters are in casual clothing that is still tight and slightly revealing around the neck/shoulders. The male is stereotypically in a simple t-shirt and jeansNew Moon (2009)
StudioCanal UK might distribute my film. They are formerly known as Optimum Releasing and work in the UK with their headquarters in London. They distribute films including British independent dramas such as Cracks (2009). The reasons why they might distribute my film is because my film would be a British Independent and also a drama. A film institution that may distribute my film is The UK film council, which say on their website that they want to distribute “non-mainstream films more widely available to cinema audiences”. They distributed British independent films such as The King‟s Speech (2011), however that was the last film they distributed before they were abolished during that year. My film would be non-mainstream and a British independent film. Another institution, Momentum pictures, which is one of the leading independent UK and Ireland distributors, may distribute my film. They release approximately 20 films a year which include many dramas such as the teen drama Dear John (2010). They distribute independent British films – which is what my film would be – such as The King’s Speech (2011). In February 2010 they won 8 BAFTA awards which is more than any other UK distributor. They may distribute my film because it would be a British Independent drama.
I have targeted my film towards teenagersbetween 13 and 16. Teenagers under 13 may beinterested however the cast is all around the ageof 16 and in the survey I created at the beginningof the task no one said they were interested inwatching a film where the main characters areyounger than their own age. Due to the themes,content and moderate language that would beincluded later on in the film the product wouldprobably be given a certificate of 12 and so theaudience is slightly restricted.
In the script I purposely made the beginning a kind of mystery as towhat was going on. At first the character is cleaning out a glass multipletimes which makes her look like she has a mental illness. When she sitsdown it is seemingly obvious she is with someone, however when shegets up there is a shot of the chair with a picture of a guy with somepink rose petals strewn around it. This can be somewhat confusing forthe audience, making them wonder what is wrong with the maincharacter and therefore making them want to find out more about her.Even though I am not really addressing the audience of teenagersbetween 13-16 as a whole, the main character is still a teenager alongwith the other characters in the opening. The other characters areabusive towards the main character which addresses some of theaudience as bulling is quite common in teenagers. I tried to be asaccurate and realistic as I could where the social group of modern teenswere concerned so the audience would be addressed and thereforemore attracted to the film. The clothing, age and activities – hangingout – is appropriate for the social group and so it would cause attractionas the audience can relate to the characters.
Having used Sony Vegas Pro 10 before, I was already quite adept at using the software, however I was not really into using a lot of effects, focusing more on transitions and what was going on in the scene. During the process of constructing my final product, I decided to experiment with some effects, especially for the title, finding out that I could create linear rays and do anything that I wanted with them. I also enlarge the tracking of the title to make the letters more spread out which was an effect used in Remember Me (2010). I also stretched the letters vertically and made it look like a transition. I changed the brightness and contrast of every shot to convey the mood which was quite dark, making sure that it was even darker when the antagonists were involved.
I have learnt a lot more about how important it is to plan. As I was doing this task by myself I had to make sure that everything was ready and organised for the day of filming. Before when I filmed videos I would usually improvise most of the time and think about what would look good and what I could use in the moment. For this task I had to plan every single detail and make sure that everything was set. I have learnt more about the grammar of filming and the conventions of film openings. I had never really broken down each individual aspect of film openings before, mainly going with what I thought „looked right‟. In my preliminary task, the opening shot was there because at the time I thought it looked right, even though I hadn‟t actually thought about what the meaning or importance of it was. One thing I would have liked to improve on is the quality of the footage. The camera is quite shaky in some parts and because I was filming right next to a main road only a few cars had to go past before there was significant background noise. Due to this it is clear when the shot changes as you can hear it. There was not really a way for me to change this once I was editing unless I recorded all of the cast saying their lines – this would have taken up a lot of time.