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Jim Krause | Classes | C228 Multi-Cam TV Studio Production 1

Week 10


  • Review Scripts & Rehearsals
  • Continue with Production People
  • Next week: Capturing multi-camera performances (Music, dance, etc.)

Announcements/Reality Check

  • No lab Wednesday (3/24) due to IU Wellness Day.
  • Demonstration Videos (1st set) this week in lab. 2nd set next week.
  • Need performers for week 13!
  • Next week your Dramatic/Comedic Scene packet is due. (Group grade) You'll produce these during Week 12.
  • Next week your Final Projects proposal and pitch is due. We'll produce these during the last two weeks of lab (Weeks 14 & 15). Due to the IU Wellness Day on April 22, Thursday's labs will only get one week of final projects.
  • Quiz #4 next week in lab. It will cover Scripts, Rehearsals, Production People, and some visualization (camera strategy).

Readings: Just review the on-line lecture notes

Rehearsals (review) --------------------------------

Basic types of rehearsals include:

  • Script reading
  • Dry Run/Blocking rehearsal
  • Walk throughs

Script reading (aka Table Reading). Your talent should be present along with the director. producer, and key production people. Simply read through the script (sometimes around a table- thus "table reading") to get a feel for it. This helps with timing and to help identify potential opportunities and problems.

Dry run or Blocking rehearsal. The idea is to work out the basic actions of the talent. In the dry run you can:

  • Work in a large room if you can't get access to the studio.
  • Mark the camera positions and the major set pieces.
  • You can use a camcorder to see how your elements work in the frame.
  • You should run through the scenes in the order they are taped.
  • Practice your cues (cue John to enter)
  • Time each segment

Walk-Through – Occurs shortly before the production is recorded.

  • Technical walk-thru (don’t need talent. Go over lighting, audio, camera moves etc.)
  • Talent Walk-thru (don’t need technical personnel)
    • Mark precise positions
    • Props
    • Go through opening lines and skip to individual cue lines
  • Combined walk-thru: Can combine, talent, camera & tech in any combination.
  • Camera rehearsal/Dress Rehearsal

Script Formats ------------------------

There are different scripts for different purposes. Most film writers use the Master Screenplay format, while those producing ads or feature stories might favor the two-column format. Sometimes you need more than one script. For example, one might write a TV feature story using a two-column format and assemble it into a news program using a rundown.

  • Two-Column (sometimes referred to as the Fully Scripted format): It usually contains at least two columns with visuals on the left and audio on the right, and includes every piece of dialog, every single shot, VTR cues) They are useful for ads, corporate, and feature/documentary. One good reason to use this format is that every single shot and sound is accounted for in the script. You can jump to anywhere in the script and read what we'll be seeing and what we'll be hearing.
  • Semi-Scripted: indicates only partial dialogue. The opening and closing remarks are included. Our Studio 5 Perspectives talk show is a good example
  • Drama Script (also known as a Film Script or Master Screenplay): This single-column format focuses on dialogue and action, not specific camera instructions.
  • Rundown (also known as Show Format): This is used for live TV and radio production and its rows and columns look similar to a spreadsheet. It can contain as little or as much info as needed. One could use it to show only segments and running times, or it can be more detailed with camera shots and teleprompter copy.

Camera Strategy (Reprise) ------------------------

Be sure to use all four cameras- even if some are locked off

Have a camera strategy so that all 4 cameras have different shots. Here's a sample camera strategy for "How to Carve a Jack-o-lantern":

  • Cam 1 MS - Host at table with pumpkins and carving supplies
  • Cam 2 CU - Host
  • Cam 3 ECU - knife cutting, etc.
  • Cam 4 (JIB) Artful, always moving Wide Shot of entire set with jack-o-lanterns and other set pieces in the foreground.

If you establish a camera strategy, it's easy to cut between them without a jump cut.

Production Roles ----------------------------------

The Role of the Producer

The Producer is responsible for a production and making sure that everything gets done on time and under budget. TV is different than film. A film producer works in broad strokes putting the teams together, and usually stays out of the way of production. In TV, the producer is actively involved in production details, booking guests, scheduling shoots, and interviewing subjects.

The Role of the Director

The Director has many roles- these aren’t clear-cut
  • Artist - convey message with style
  • Psychologist - get different personalities to work at their best and as a team. Be positive & confident. Don't ridicule or blame. Find solutions.
  • Technical Advisor - Have enough of a technical background to know the possibilities and limitations of people and equipment.
  • Coordinator - must be able to coordinate a lot of different tasks that might not have a lot to do with each other.

Above or Below the Line ------------------------

Production people are sometimes classified as being above the line or below the line.

Above the line Personnel (Non-technical, influence creative direction)

Executive Producer

In charge of one or more programs/movies. Manages money/promotional matters in broad strokes.


In charge of an individual production. Is responsible for all people working on a particular production.

Field Producer

Takes charge of remote production


In charge of directing talent and technical crew.

Assistant Director

Assists director & keeps timing. Helps "ready" shots in a multicam production.


Refers to all performers & actors


Portray other characters


Portray themselves

Below the line Personnel
(Often technical crew members)

Chief Engineer

The main tech person in charge of all others.

Technical Director

Runs the switcher and often serves as crew chief.

Camera Operator

Opertaes the camera (often called videographer)

Video Operator

Adjusts camera CCU (shades the cameras)

CG Operator

Runs the CG

Audio Engineer


Lighting Director

In charge of lighting


Unions -------------------------------

Unions & Legal Matters: Many performers, writers, directors, and actors belong to a guild or union as do technical personnel.

It's important to not only be aware of various unions, but be familiar with their policies for safety, breaks, and work parameters.

Non Technical Unions

  • Actor's Equity Association - American actors and stage managers in the theatre. (Affiliated with the AFL-CIO)
  • SAG - AFTRA Screen Actors Guild - American Federation of TV and Radio Artists.
    • These two unions merged in 2012
      • Screen Actors Guild was the major union for screeen talent.
      • Aftra was the major union for TV talent.
  • AGMA American Guild of Musical Artists. The major union for stage singers. It represents opera and concert singers, production personnel and dancers at principal opera, concert and dance companies throughout the United States. (Affiliated with the AFL-CIO)
  • AFM American Federation of Musicians of the US and Canada. The major union for musicians.
  • DGA Directors Guild of America
  • WGA Writers Guild of America

Technical Unions

  • IBEW International Brothers of Electrical Workers
  • NABET National Association of Broadcast Employees and Technicians - A subset of the Communication Workers of America
  • IATSE International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees and Moving Picture Machine Operators of the US and Canada. This is the major union for grips, costume, and various technicians who work in the broadcast and film industry.

Lab --------------------------------------------------------------

Learning Objectives:

  • GIve students practice producing their own projects
  • Have fun in the process!


  • Attendance
  • Confirm performers
  • Review Demonstration video and then:
    • Set lights
    • Build set
    • Mic talent
    • Carry out a walk-through (technical, talent, & combined)
  • Talk about next week's production(s)
  • Wrap


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