Apps iPhones, , , , , , , , , , , , — July 6, 2011 11:53 — 0 Comments

New iPhone app helps keep track of film shoot

There's an app for that. On location in LA. Photo: smartmoviemaking.com

Whether you are actually filming on an iPhone or not, a great new app is now available to help directors at all levels plan out film and video shoots.

Most producers and directors will be familiar with a production strip board that allows tracking and scheduling of a film or video shoot; well until now there has never been an app to carry out this work on a mobile device.

Step up ShotList: created by Soluble Apps and part financed by Britain’s Northern Film & Media organisation.

Peter Johnson is a former games developer and founder of Soluble Apps. He says the idea for the app happened when a colleague went to start work as 1st AD on a feature and was ‘amazed’ to find that there was nothing at all available on the App Store.

‘ShotList is the first app to provide what every filmmaker needs to track a scripted shoot on the go,’ says Johnson.

He adds: ‘Filmmakers can enter as much or as little information into the app as they want. It could simply be a series of shot numbers and storyboard frames, or all of the detail that would usually be pulled from a script and entered into a production strip board system as part of the scheduling process. This powerful pocket-sized tool lets filmmakers react and respond quickly to on-the-day challenges, such as weather conditions or issues with locations or cast.’

He envisages ShotList being used in two slightly-different ways. Firstly to schedule smaller shoots, and secondly as a sort of custom-designed ‘to do’ list on set for larger productions (where the overall scheduling might be done by a heavyweight, deskbound program.)

‘In the latter case you might use ShotList as a list of scene numbers, with any notes or storyboard frames/ test shots you might need to refer to stored for each scene you plan to shoot that day, and would be tracking the shots as they are completed so you know you got everything, and see what remained,’ he says.

ShotList’s features include:

  • track and schedule scripted drama, commercial shoots, radio production or videogame motion capture shoots
  • add, edit, delete or re-order scenes freely across multiple shooting days – with instant updating of the total number of script pages to be shot each day
  • each scene can be clearly marked as “To Do”, “Delay”, “Cut” or “Done” as you shoot, ensuring a vital scene is not missed
  • view up to 6 storyboard frames per scene for instant recall. Each frame can be marked off as it is completed
  • store hotlinked notes for each scene, for instant dial of relevant phone numbers or access to web addresses (such as location information, or train or tide timetables)
  • keep everyone informed by emailing the latest “one-line schedule”, or exchanging updated project files with other ShotList users on your team using Dropbox

Roxy Bramley, creative manager at Northern Film & Media, says: “Shotlist provides a low-cost, portable, digital shot-tracking solution for filmmakers. The app potentially has a global professional market and we were keen to support Peter in developing this practical, commercial product.”

The app is available from the app store at a special introductory offer of $29.99 and is compatible with iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.

Johnson also says that an update is already scheduled for the end of this month and includes the ability to move multiple strips around quickly and to duplicate groups of strips.

Sound like a winner.

  • If you are a director or producer and would like to test the app out for yourself, email me

First Look:

If you are making films on iPhones and smartphones, upload them to our new Vimeo channel and we will review them on the site.

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About the author

Tony Myers has written 866 articles for Smart Movie Making

Fooling around with the iPhone since 2010. Taking it to the next web by writing about new media, new technology, new wave cinema and the digital revolution.

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