02/05/11 .8

Art of the movie trailer

so this part is telling you about what makes a trailer and the diffrences between certain trailers. it also shows the versitility of trailers and how broad their use is

Now there are a few key elements that make up a movie trailer. First is a voice over. [3,5] Very cliché, I know but they are a cliché for a reason. A voice-over isn’t essential to a trailer, but is rather common. A voice-over is used to enhance the audiences understanding of the plot as well helps as set a mood for the overall trailer. A grand, booming voice! Or a pleasant, affable voice. The voice-over is a powerful and flexible tool when implemented well. Good examples, to show the versatility of the voice-overs, are the trailers for the films: Terminator 2 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eajuMYNYtuY) and Cheaper by the Dozenhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=60A-N05Du6s ). Two drastically different films but both use the same voice-over artist. The Terminator 2 trailer uses the voice-over to create a very serious feel of action and suspense. Now watch the trailer for Cheaper by the Dozen, the use of the voice over in this trailer creates a friendly, playful vibe. For both these trailers the voice-over achieved what it set out to do, to set the right frame of mind for the viewing of the trailer, though it was the same voice for both of them. Now I mentioned before that the voice-over is somewhat of a cliché, and some trailers use this to their advantage. Movies such as Jerry Seinfeld’s Comedian http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fVDzuT0fXro ) and Tenacious D in The Pick of Destinyhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TXxQFMG86HA ) both use the cliché of the voice-over for satirical effect, to enhance the trailer.

A voice-over isn’t the only part of a trailer, there is also the music [3,5]. The music is an almost integral part of any film trailer, as well as in any other medium. Music is important. The music sets the mood and tone of the overall trailer, as well as enrich it. Often trailers wont use the same music as in the film because the film score might note have been written yet. In this place they would probably use music borrowed from other films, generic music made to go in films, a contemporary music track, or a track specially composed for use in the trailer. [3] A trailer that I personally think uses music brilliantly is the trailer for the film Pineapple Express. ( http://www.traileraddict.com/trailer/pineapple-express/trailer ) For the first half the music is rather laid back, a bit funky which meshes well with the tone, then MIA’s Paper planes kicks in and things start to get a little hectic, the actions in the trailer move in time with the music. This trailer is a personal favourite of mine, music-wise anyway.

Next is a cast run. This is where the stars of the film, and if the director, or producer, is notable would appear. This is usually presented in two ways. With the actors name on a title card, or with a voice-over and usually a shot of the actor. And at the end of the movie trailer there is a billing block, which is a list of the principle cast and crew. [3]

this is the list of all the trailers mentioned and a link to see them. they all have the title of the movie, the year and what i could and did use them for. also after it is the bibliography.

Filmography of trailers

Spiderman (2002)


A good example of special footage, that was never intended to be in the film, being used for promotion.

Psycho (1960)


A good example of old style trailers.

Dr Strangelove (1964)


The first to use non-linear style editing for a trailer.

La Dolce Vita (1960)


The comedian (2002)


A trailer making fun of voice work.

Terminator 2 (1991)


Cheaper by the dozen (2003)


2 different movies showing the flexibility of voice over

Tenacious D (2006)


A stupid voice over

Greatest show on earth (1952)


Very generic old style trailer.

Pineapple Express (2008)


Good use of music

The Warrior’s Way (2010)


A trailer with all mentioned elements

Billy Jack (1971)



All accessed on the 04/04/11.

[1]Media Report


[2]History of Movie Trailers


[3]Wikipedia on Movie Trailers


[4]Movie trailers rank #3


[5]Coming attractions: Reading American Movie Trailers.

Author: Lisa Kernan,

Publisher: University of Texas Press

Publish date: 11/2004

[6]Avid website


[7]Avid wiki


[8]Andrew J. Kuehn biography


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