Catch up with our limited mini-series, Thank You For Not Cutting, right here: Part One and Part Two.
For many movies it’s common for the first shots to be merely a few seconds long before there’s a cut. But I read somewhere (the Internet) from a very credible source (a Facebook friend) that if a filmmaker wants their movie to even be considered for the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival, the opening shot has to be at least ten seconds long. I looked at the winners of the prize dating back to 2008, and sure enough, all opening shots are lengthy. In fact, none of them are shorter than fifteen seconds. In this special edition to my mini-series, I talk about opening shots and why they’re important.