The Shadow Man – Final Project

The semester is finally over! With this last final project, we had a choice between “Impress Me!” (me being the professor) and creating a fast food parody. I opted to go with “Impress Me”. It was much more open ended and basically had no parameters, so it was difficult to decide what to do and create something that is actually impressive. I decided to challenge myself by creating a movie trailer. Although I’ve done video editing for this class before, I think making a movie trailer is definitely more intense. I got the idea from Editing is Everything on Youtube. Her channel is about how editing can create something completely different from the original concept. I mainly looked at her videos pertaining to “(Some movie) but in 7 different genres”

For my movie I picked The Princess and the Frog. I’ve seen this movie more times than I can count, so I’m very familiar with the scenes. I also thought it would be interesting to edit an animated movie. My next step was to decide what genre I wanted to create. Since Princess and the Frog is a fairytale movie, I went with the complete opposite — horror. To begin editing, I first started by finding the clips I wanted to use and downloading them from Youtube. After working for a while, I realized that there were too many individual clips that I wanted and they also weren’t in very good quality. To fix this, I used Vimeo to screen record the movie on Disney Plus. Surprisingly this actually worked. I was expecting it to just blackout the screen, but luckily I was able to record the whole movie. I recorded it in 30 min segments so that the sections wouldn’t be so large for editing. When I finally got the movie downloaded, I started editing again. I used Adobe Premeire Pro to make my trailer. This was my first time using Premiere Pro, so I definitely had to learn along the way, which made it even more challenging. Once I put together all of the clips, I edited it to look slightly darker or cooler toned, added music and exported it.

Summarizing everything makes it sound like I had no problems at all when in reality I ran into many, many problems. To start with some minor and expected issues, it was very time consuming to screen record the whole movie and wait for it to download. Even after I had it all together, going through the movie to find the clips and audios I wanted was also very challenging. Although I know the movie very well, I had a hard time finding the exact spot and would get confused on what scene would happen when. The biggest problem about the movie itself is probably that a lot of the dialogue is in song form, which doesn’t pair well with a horror movie. Some of my clips and audios are very short because of this, or I had to cut the sound out all together. Adding the background music was the last problem I had with the content itself. A lot of the horror music I found was either too intense or not enough. In the end, I opted for the trailer soundtrack from Hereditary. Of course, video editing is time consuming anyway, so I wasn’t surprised to run into these obstacles.

Aside from the content, I ran into a lot of issues with Premiere Pro. It would often have a really choppy playback. It would “mute” entire audio clips or get stuck on one part of the video while the audio still played. When that happened, it was really hard to tell if the changes I made were smooth, especially with transitions. Sometimes it would also take a long time to import any audio, video, or images.

Throughout this whole process, I watched many tutorials and learned a lot about the power of editing. If I were to do this again, I would probably pick a movie with less singing in it, so it would be easier to extract dialogue. I also would want to try a different editing software. Premiere Pro is a great option, but the lagging in playback really annoyed me throughout the process. Despite all of this, I think for my first time editing an intense video, it turned out pretty good. It’s very satisfying to see the end product and I’m proud of myself for doing this. Of course I can always improve, but you have to start somewhere right.

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