Frequently Asked Questions
Why Should We Get a Wedding Film?
Why wouldn’t you? You’re putting a lot of time, energy, emotion and, yes, money into planning and producing this day—choosing the location for the ceremony and the reception, choosing dresses, decor and entertainment, choosing the readings, maybe even writing your own vows. It’s the one big turning point in your life where you get to make the decisions. And on the day, you’ll be so busy and excited you’ll be lucky if you have time to glance at those centerpieces you spent so much money on and so much time agonizing over.
The day after your wedding, you’ll have the most important thing: you marriage, your spouse, and your future together. But the wedding itself—all the effort and planning, all the tears and smiles, this unique gathering of friends and family—will be a memory. So, seriously: Why wouldn’t you want to invest in something to help you hold onto those memories? A wedding film is truly the only thing that can keep that memory fresh. Yes, you’ll want a photographer to capture formal portraits of your nearest and dearest standing statue-still with their best smiles in their finery: That’s the official story to hang on the wall, with their best posture and picture-perfect smiles from an album or to hang in the front hall. But that speech that had everyone laughing, or the hug that made you cry? Those won’t be in pictures, and how will you remember them in a month or a year or a decade? At the very least, a wedding film will let you revisit all these wonderful moments forever.
And, frankly, there’s something we hear all the time: Couples who didn’t get a wedding film tell us they regret it. They wish they had something beyond pictures to relive the day. Don’t just take our word for it: Listen to these couples on WeddingWire and The Knot.
Now imagine that your wedding film can be not just a record of your day, but a story so beautiful and awesome that you’ll want to watch it again and again. One couple keeps our film of their wedding on a USB Flash Drive on their key chain, so they can watch it—and share it—whenever they want, on any TV or computer. Imagine a short movie telling not just the story of your day, but the story of your great love, in familiar voices and beautiful images.
How Does It All Work?
After you contact us, we’ll send you a short questionnaire to gather a few basic details about your wedding and make sure we’re a good fit.
If you decide to book us we’ll send you an online agreement you can e-sign and we’ll require one-third of your package price as a deposit to secure the date. (It’s best to book as early as you can: We don’t like having to tell people we aren’t available for their date.)
Closer to the wedding we’ll send you another questionnaire with a few more specific details, and we’ll want to catch up (at a coffee shop or by phone or Facetime/Skype) to go over plans for the day. We’ll find out if there’s anything in particular you do—or don’t—want us to film. We’ll ask you a few of the questions that we might ask you on camera during prep on your wedding day (the last thing you need is a pop quiz you haven’t prepared for!)
On your wedding day, there will be two of us with cameras and gear. Don’t worry if you’re camera shy: Most of the time you won’t even know we’re there. Typically, one of us will start with the bride getting ready, the other with the groom. We’ll both be filming at the ceremony and for everything after. It’s also possible for us to meet up and film something before or after your wedding day: If you have something like that in mind, just ask. We love engagement and creative Love Story videos.
Then we start editing. We know you’re anxious to see the final product, but there’s a lot that goes in to making sure it all fits together and every shot looks as awesome as we can make it. When it’s ready, we let you view your film (or films) online with a password before we send you the final edit on a USB Flash Drive. Our goal is to have this to you in about two months.
I Heard About a Company Whose Prices Start At $99? Why Are Yours So Much Higher?
Actually our prices are at or just below those of the other professionals with similar experience, gear and talents. A lot goes into doing your video right. For the most basic wedding, we bring $15,000–$20,000 worth of video and audio gear with us. We’re insured: A lot of venues require proof of insurance to let us shoot, but we wouldn’t think of going without it: If a guest trips over a light stand, both our gear and your guest are covered by insurance. We pay our second shooters well. And after the wedding is over, not only are there expenses for licensing music to use in your video, but there are a lot of steps to the editing process that can eat up 40, 80 or 100 hours—or more—to get every frame of that 15- to 30-minute film as awesome as we can make it.
And that company you heard about? What you get for $99 is the unedited footage from 1/2 hour of shooting by one videographer (who you probably won’t meet until the morning of your wedding). By the time you add in all the things you want, all the things they recommend (all the things we include in our packages)—things like two skilled wedding cinematographers shooting for your full day and editing your footage into a video you can sit down and watch—their price will actually be as much as one of our packages—or more.
How Long Will My Film Be?
That’s up to you. We have several options, but a typical package includes a Feature Film (typically 12–20 minutes long) including the most important sights and sounds from throughout the day. For any package with a Feature Film, we also typically include the full speeches and toasts as a separate “extra.” We also offer a Highlights Film (3–5 minutes) that’s perfect for sharing online—Facebook, YouTube, Vimeo—especially if you have distant friends or family who couldn’t attend. Some people like to add on a Full Ceremony Film, also.
Do We Get a DVD?
Our primary delivery method is a USB Flash Drive in a custom case designed for your wedding film. This lets you watch your film on your computer in full HD (a lot of image quality is lost with DVD), and most TVs and BluRay players have USB slots. This is also the best way to insure that you’ll be able to watch your wedding film at its highest possible quality for many years to come, because in just a few years DVD players will be as rare as VHS video cassette players are now. If you really want or need a DVD—or a BluRay Disc—we can add that, but it’s no longer part of the standard package. (We don’t offer VHS or Betamax tapes any more, however.)
How Can We Make Sure Our Wedding Film Turns Out Awesome?
- Don’t rely on Uncle Joe and his old camcorder or on your friends and their phones to capture what’s important to you. It sounds self-serving for us to say it, but you want someone whose whole focus of the day is capturing the best video for you, not someone who’s spending half of their time as a guest who will miss a big speech while they’re in line at the bar.
- Communicate with your filmmaker/videographer. At the most basic level, that means we won’t spend time shooting decor and moments that weren’t important to you during the planning and can focus on the things that are most important to you. But what makes your film awesome isn’t in our cameras or how beautiful the decor is—it’s in how well we’re able to capture your personality. That’s why we think it’s so important to meet you in person and sit down and get to know you—both of you—before the wedding day.
- Unplug (at least for the ceremony). Tell your guests to put their phones away. It’s not just that their blurry, jiggly hand-held smartphone video of your first kiss or your dad’s speech isn’t going to hold a candle to what we can get with professional cameras, lenses, microphones and a good tripod, it also means that guest’s attention is on the camera rather than on you and actually being in the moment and sharing your joy. There is plenty of time for a quick selfie with the couple during the cocktail hour. (Also, that give you more control over which images and clips get posted to social media.)
- When deciding where to get hair and makeup done, think “natural light.” Hotel bathrooms, rooms with fluorescent lights, basements are all poor choices. (Also, your hair and makeup themselves will look better if done in a room flooded with natural light!)