By Steven D Katz
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Additional resources for Film Directing: Cinematic Motion, Second Edition
Depending on the camera lens, the director can get in close to any of the actors or vary the size of the shot. STAGING 1 1 The camera frames Ann in the back seat through the rear window. We watch her here for some time as she listens to the car radio. 1a The camera leaves Ann and moves forward to frame the driver and Jack. D1 Note: To make the diagram clearer the trailer rig has been omitted. The dolly moves shown in this sequence could only be accomplished with a camera car pulling a trailer carrying the “subject” car with the actors.
Countering moves of this type are extremely useful in shifting the camera to a new position in the scene space. RETRACKING H. W. Fowler, in his dictionary of Modern English Usage, defines elegant variation as the “Labored avoidance of repetition,” and calls this one of the most widespread of literary faults. ” In the last two decades a similar fear of repetition has grown up around the movement of the camera over ground previously covered in the same shot—even if the camera is moving in the reverse direction.
An experienced director does this all the time and it may become so second nature that the director is unaware that he is even doing it. 1A STAGING ACROSS THE FRAME For choreographed scenes it is useful toreduce the scene space to 3 possibilities shown in Figure 31A, B, C. Staging across the frame, In-depth staging and Circular staging. These plans are necessary because of the restricted mobility of the moving camera, but also, because organizing the movement of actors and camera according to a predominant line of motion is a good foundation for complex movement.