You are on page 1of 6

Department of Theatre, Film and Television

Assessment Brief
MODULE: Individual Project. TFT00031M
ASSESSMENT TITLE: Short film & reflective essay/technical report
ASSESSMENT DATES: SET: Tuesday 14 April 2015;
HAND-IN: 16.00 (films and printed paperwork); 23.59,Thursday 3 September 2015
(reflective essay and technical report).

THE BRIEF
To produce a short dramatic film or equivalent output, such as a documentary or
pilot television episode and a reflective essay/technical report about the making of
that film.
THE AIM
To demonstrate an ability to apply technical, practical and, if applicable, theoretical
knowledge developed during the first six months of the MA in the making of a film (or
equivalent) to a standard appropriate within a masters programme. To demonstrate
an ability to reflect on the making of that film, both in practical terms and as a
technical challenge in particular to draw conclusions from the experience of making
the film that indicate lessons learned for future work.
THE TASKS
1. YOUR FILM
You may choose any format, genre or intended platform you wish. You may want to
make a short dramatic film intended for festivals, a short documentary intended for
online distribution, a pilot episode of a television show or series indented for
television.
Whichever you choose, you are required to obtain written approval for your proposed
film from David Hickman, the module convenor, who will arrange opportunities for
regular supervision during preproduction.
Approval will be judged on the basis of a short treatment submitted prior to a
supervision meeting.
For information on recommended durations and technical specifications, please see
production requirements and limitations, below.
1

Department of Theatre, Film and Television

2. YOUR ESSAY
A combined reflective essay and technical report, the combined length of which
should be no more than 10,000 words (illustrations, captions, indices and
appendices should not be included in this word count).
For detailed information on suggested ways of organising and writing your
essay/report, please see guidance, below.
GUIDANCE
The report can be structured in a number of different ways, and of course it depends
to some extent on the kind of narrative film/documentary/TV piece that youre
making.
However, Id suggest that the report and essay ought to include:
1. A clear statement of the intent, narrative arc and visual language of your film.
2. A reflection on the origins of your film. Where did the idea come from? How does it
fit within your idea of yourself as a storyteller? Was it difficult to pin down something
that would sustain your interest and commitment over the six months or more that
youd have to live with the idea?
3. A reflection on the development from the original idea, through development and
pre-production (including some commentary, if applicable, on abandoned ideas and
the reasons why they were set aside).
4. A reflection on the shooting of your film: how the casting decisions panned out;
how the locations worked (or didnt); how shooting days progressed; what happened
when things went awry, and how you sought to address these problems; how well
your assembled crew worked together.
5. A reflection on postproduction: how smoothly the edit progressed; where the
problems were and why; how well the sound edit and sound postproduction went
(and what youd wished youd recorded but didnt).
6. A technical report on the decisions you made about workflow, and how these
decisions worked out in practice. Having seen your film to completion, would you
have designed your workflow differently? Based on your experience, are there any
lessons you think the department can learn that would make workflow better or
easier? This report should also include decisions made on aspect ratios and other
technical decisions (such as whether you mixed in 5.1) that have a creative impact.
7. How you see your film being used to project your skills as a filmmaker beyond the
MA. Do you have plans to place the film in festivals, to set up a Vimeo site, to create
a showreel?
2

Department of Theatre, Film and Television

Please note: you will NOT be penalised for an analysis in your essay/report that
highlights things that you believe went wrong. One of the main purposes of this
report and essay is to fully document and understand the lessons that can be taken
forward into a career in film and/or television.
Do remember to REFERENCE your sources appropriately and by using a
recognized referencing style. We recommend the HARVARD style, but you may
choose another so long as you use it consistently. More information on Harvard can
be found and downloaded here:
http://www.york.ac.uk/integrity/harvard.html
PRODUCTION REQUIREMENTS AND LIMITATIONS
1: You should aim to complete your shoots within three weeks (15 days). Exceptions
will be considered but approval must be gained before requesting bookings.
2: Kit bookings can be taken as one complete booking lasting 15 days or they can be
divided into 3 separate bookings. For example, you could place 3x 5 day bookings;
2x 6 day bookings and 1x 3 day booking; or 1x 3 day booking plus 1x 4 day booking
plus 1x 8 day booking. Basically, so long as you do not request more than 15 days
with kit and place more than 3 separate kit bookings you will have reasonable
flexibility to complete filming. However...
3: All shoots must be completed by no later than Friday 28th August 2015. No kit
bookings will be approved beyond this date, although we hope you're well involved
with you edit by this point!
4. We expect all of preproduction (aside from recces, etc) and all of postproduction
to be done on-site at TFTV. Any exceptions must be agreed in advance.
5. Guide running times for your films are: fifteen to thirty minutes for fiction;
thirty to forty-five minutes for a documentary. I stress: these are GUIDES, not
hard and fast rules (that is, please don't string out a brilliant twenty-minute
documentary into a half-good forty-minute film!)
6. TFTV will make a financial contribution of 325 towards production costs. This
contribution may be claimed with the presentation (to Helen Whalley in
administration) of receipts for purchases/hire. Remember that all equipment and
facilities within or owned by TFTV may be used, subject to availability, free of
charge.
7. If you intend to film with child actors under the age of 16, you must comply with
TFTVs child actors policy. You must contact David Hickman in the first instance if
you do intend to cast children.

Department of Theatre, Film and Television

SUBMISSION REQUIREMENTS
1. YOUR FILM:
The final edit master, delivered on or before 16.00, Thursday 3 September, must
adhere to the following:
1. Timeline start at 09:59:30:00, 0:20 of bars and tone followed by 0:07 of clock with
the title, student exam number, programme duration, aspect ratio, resolution, frame
rate and audio format (e.g., stereo, 5.1, etc.) followed by 0:03 of black and silence.
Picture should start at 10:00:00:00.
You must submit a DCP version of your finished film with the following settings:
2. Format: JPEG 2000 (JP2K)
3. Aspect Ratio: 16:9, 2.39:1 or 4:3 only
4. Data Rate: 250Mb/s
5. No bars and tone programme only.

You must also submit a Quicktime file with the following settings:
1. Format: Quicktime MOV
2. Video Codec: Apple ProREs 4:4:4
3. Frame Rate: 25fps Progressive
4. Data Rate: limited to 10Mb/s (10,000kbps)
5. Bars and tone as per the Edit Master specifications (above)
6. Files should be named as follows: TITLE_YXXXXXXX_DFTP_IndProject.mov
where XXXXXXX is your student number (for example Gone_with the
wind_Y1234567_DFTP_IndProject.mov if your student number was Y1234567 and
Gone with the Wind was the title of your film)
NOTE 1: There is no requirement to deliver in 5.1; you may deliver a stereo audio
mix if you wish, although keep in mind that 5.1 will be strongly preferred and may
even be required by some festivals. Aspect ratios are at your discretion, although
please make clear how the film should be exhibited by adding this information (e.g
2.35:1_5.1) to the the film title, examination number, etc.
4

Department of Theatre, Film and Television

NOTE 2: We require a copyright notice at the end of the film - white lettering on
black, in the form:
Department of Theatre, Film and Television, University of York
This card should be held for a minimum of 5 seconds and be included in the running
time of the film. A copyright notice is available on the VLE in the Resources
section. No production company names are allowed.
NOTE 3: We also require CLEARANCE DETAILS of any commercial music or
footage used in your film. Ideally, you should get a signed hard copy letter from a
copyright holder stating either that they are assigning copyright of the music to you,
or that they own the copyright and are giving permission for their music to be used in
your student film and exhibited in all screenings of that film. An email can suffice but
needs to have full physical contact details (ie street address and telephone number)
of the person and/or company granting permission. This documentation should be
printed out and submitted by the 16.00 deadline on 3 September. We require TWO
COPIES of this and other production paperwork.
NOTE 4: Some of you will be shooting at very high resolutions if you are using the
RED cameras. In editing we strongly advise against editing at these
resolutions. Doing so requires huge amounts of processing power, and will slow
your edits down to the point of screaming frustration. We suggest you edit with
lower-res proxy files. If you need further guidance on this, please contact our
technical staff.
2. YOUR ESSAY/REPORT
On or before 23.59 on Thursday 3 September 2015, you must upload a Word or
.PDF document to the submission point on the VLE. The opening of the submission
point will be announced by email in August.
Please note that although 50% of the mark for the essay is for technical reporting,
you do NOT have to ensure the technical detail occupies 50% of the length of the
essay.
ASSESSMENT AND FEEDBACK CRITERIA
This module accounts for 90 credits or 50% of the credits available in the entire MA.
YOUR FILM:
Marking criteria are as follows:
Creativity: 50% (This may include assessments of originality, innovation, and the
creative application of craft skills)
5

Department of Theatre, Film and Television

Technical proficiency: 50% (This may include assessments of applied craft skills in
direction, cinematography, writing and editing).
The film accounts for 60% of the overall module mark.
YOUR ESSAY/REPORT:
Marking criteria are as follows:
Quality of reflection: 50% (This may include assessments of evidence of applied
critical thinking the ability to analyse what happened during production and how
lessons were learned and any missteps might be avoided, as well as a demonstrated
ability to contextualise your work as your work, the product of a distinctive
filmmakers point of view.)
Quality of the technical report: 50% (This may include your correct usage of industry
terminology, as well as an appropriate use of technical solutions to problems in
during preproduction, production and postproduction.)
The essay/report accounts for 40% of the overall module mark.
OTHER USEFUL INFORMATION
Please NOTE that there will be an announcement nearer the time of the timetable for
SCREENINGS of your films. We will be assessing during these screenings, but it
will also be an opportunity for you to introduce your film and invite cast and crew to
view.
The screenings are usually arranged within five days of the deadline on 3
September, so we ask that you do not make travel plans until this date is announced.

Related Interests