Originally Posted by vfxproducer
I don't understand this comment, since it costs exactly the same to do a wider shot vs a tighter close up. Same crew, same cameras, same lighting, same actor, same set or location, same set dressing, same hair and makeup, same everything. I think you misunderstand why people shoot closeups. It's not about cost.
Well....yes and no.
While the main purpose isn't to save money, it can do exactly that.
The wider the shot, the more extras, props and standing set you need to fill the scene. On location, that means blocking more sidewalk, street or other area for a longer time. On a set, shooting wider means having to possibly move the flyable walls for multiple angles instead of being able to pull everything except what's needed to be seen. In theory, this can also reduce the need for a lot of extra lighting since it wouldn't have to cover as much of the set. Very close-up shots can also potentially yield less need for audio sweetening in post by allowing the boom mic to be closer or lavs to not be hidden under clothing. Further, ECU shots usually don't involve the "walk and talk", which allows the actor to concentrate more on the dialog. This can reduce retakes. Also, those really tight shots usually won't be dolly or jib shots and can even be done hand held if the DP chooses. This means less gear rental by possibly not needing those more expensive mounts. Finally, if the shot involves CGI or other effects, that's all the less area to cover and potentially less rendering needed.
So, you're right, it's not the motivation, but it can be cheaper to avoid mixing tight shots with wider shots - or using multiple wider angles.
Of course, the same can be said of doing everything on master shots to avoid moving the camera around. The extra expensive of more background elements being needed is made up by not needing to turn everything around for reax.Edited by NetworkTV - 4/12/13 at 12:47pm