We have updated the Quick Reference card (revision #2)
Click here for .pdf files, Micro$oft Word file and iPhone image.
All seasoned professionals know that consistently following a proper procedure when shooting a film is essential. If you’re shooting videos and films with an inexperienced crew, why not consider using a quick reference guide?
Here’s our free quick reference card Quiet On Set!. You can download various sizes and file formats. The image is optimized for display on mobile devices. Templates are provided so you can customize your own card. This procedure is referred to as “calling the roll“.
This card will fit easily into any camera or equipment case. It may be displayed in a plastic badge holder. You might want to hang the cards in convenient locations such as on a tripod or light stand for easy access. See the image gallery below for the “wallet size” version.
I’ve customized this card to include a quick reference for my Panasonic AF1000 camera and Zoom H1 recorder. It’s so easy to forget about the correct settings for equipment nowadays. I summarized just what I need to use from the extensive and bulky user manuals.
Even filmmakers shooting on a $700 DSLR camera with the Zoom H1 with a tiny crew will benefit from this card. On larger budget films the director may only be involved with items 1., 11. and 12. The assistant director would look after calling out the rest.
The best thing about the Quiet On Set! card is that it provides a step-by-step procedure for the shooting sequence. It clearly states when to wait… until the camera or sound person is ready. Your film crew will experience a procedure which is smooth, methodical and never rushed. A smooth consistent work flow will vastly reduce the chances of something going wrong.
Using the card while shooting will certainly improve editing and post production. Many times I’ve discovered later in post that the audio had not started when it should have. Somehow the camera was rolling ahead of the audio recorder. This error is easily prevented by following the steps as shown on the card.
A printed card has lots of advantages, however you may prefer viewing the quick reference on your mobile device. You can view the full page PDF on most smart phones. The PNG image displays well and may also be used as a lock screen for the quickest access possible.
I hope you’ll find this card useful. We welcome suggestions. Why not post a comment below or a link to your customized version of Quiet On Set ?
You’ll find a more extensive commentary on calling the role here.
~ Rob McCormack, Editor
Quiet On Set! Image Gallery
PDF printing tips:
- Using “Preview” on a Mac, you can simply bring up the printer dialog box and then select how many “Copies per sheet“.
- To make the card a different size, you can change the scale from 100% to something smaller.
Template for Customization
Micro$oft Word template
- If you have a Gmail account, you can copy this template and customize it. The Quiet On Set quick reference card was originally done as a Google Doc.
- Login to your Gmail account first, then click on:
Special thanks to the pros at http://www.dvxuser.com/ for providing guidance in creating Quiet On Set!
I’ve been saying the same lines for a long time in this order:
- let’s shoot – gets everyone focused
- standby – actors & director now focused
- waiting on me – literally getting the camera dept focused
- sound rolls – waiting for “speed” from the sound dept
- camera rolls – tells me I’m literally rolling
- marker please – 2ac marks the shot
- set – tells the director that we are set
- action please – calls action
- cut –
- reset back to 1 –
- repeat or moving on
Also from Charles Papert
With a less experienced crew, this many steps may help prevent someone from forgetting to do something.
Here’s how it goes down on the sets I’m used to, more or less:
AD: (calls for quiet/settle). “Roll please” (echoed via walkie by PA’s across and outside the set)
[both camera and sound roll simultaneously. In the film days sound would roll first and achieve speed before the camera would roll, to save film]
Mixer (or echoed by boom op): “Sound speeds”
2nd AC: (calls out slate info, or sometimes the mixer has already done so), then “A mark” [if two cameras, A 2nd says “2 cameras; A mark” followed by B 2nd “B mark”
Camera operator: [once they are ready] “Set” [if two cameras, “A set” then “B set”]
Regardless of budget level/crew size, the modifications I’d suggest to your list would be eliminating the “Mark it” from the director (AD’s) end, as the call of “speed” is the cue to hit the sticks. And calling “set” should come from the camera operator (allowing for the instances you suggested during “settling”).