Working With Storyboards
It’s not just the director that uses storyboards. Storyboards should be shared with all visual departments as well as the production team. They act as a guide for the crew on how the director wants the film to look. Additionally, they advise the production team on creating the schedule.
Storyboards will be created by the director, director of photography, and a storyboard artist during early pre-production. The producer is the first to look over the completed storyboards to make sure that all shots are financially feasible.
After they are approved, storyboards will then be shared with the essential crew as a PDF file or printed out to be placed in a binder. Either way, the director will go through the storyboards with each department head or hold a production meeting to discuss them.
For the 1st AD, storyboards help them create the daily production schedule, and for the producer, they help them organize. For example, a Steadicam shot. This will need more time to set up, and specialist equipment like this will need to be hired out in advance.
During production, every director has their own way of working. Some directors will have the storyboards on them at all times, and the DOP might refer back to them. Other directors don’t use storyboards at all; this is entirely up to the individual and how they wish to work.
Storyboards are more frequently used for stunts and digital visual effects. This is because stunt work (for safety reasons) must be accurate. Furthermore, visual effects may be created while production is taking place and often must be precisely pre-visualized. Here the use of storyboards helps keep everyone on the same page.
During post-production, the editor might use the storyboards alongside the director to help cut the film. In distribution and marketing, storyboards can be used to help promote the movie. They can be used for things such as the making-of featurettes, or they can be shared online as concept art.
Check out this storyboard comparison video for the 2014 film, “The Grand Budapest Hotel”: