What do we look for in a suitable interview location?
Here at Moji Cinema, we take a great deal of pride in the quality of our work. In order to achieve the highest quality picture and sound possible, there are certain characteristics that we look for in a suitable interview environment.
One of the most important features is a quiet location that is free from extraneous noise including ringing phones, traffic, people talking, ventilation systems that we can’t control, etc. This is especially important when we conduct interviews. Think about it. If the audience is struggling to hear what the subject is saying, it’s highly unlikely that they’ll stay tuned to your video for very long.
On the other hand, if the subject is constantly distracted, they’ll have a difficult time staying focused and conveying the necessary emotion to tell a powerful story. Nothing kills a good interview faster than a set of wandering eyes and ears. Anything that we can do to eliminate distractions is extremely important for the success of the video as a whole.
Another important feature is having access to natural light and/or electrical outlets. We love to film in natural light because nothing beats the power of the sun in illuminating the subject of a video. We do realize that natural light isn’t always available or practical in certain environments so we always bring studio lighting to accommodate any shooting scenario.
It’s also very important to have adequate space that is free of clutter. A location with ample room will allow us to set up our gear while moving around freely and it won’t impede the staging process. After all, we don’t want anyone tripping over a light stand or tripod and hurting themselves. Safety is always our main priority so let’s work together to eliminate any mishaps.
Another detail that’s often overlooked is scheduling. Some locations may be more optimal at different times of the day or week. If you’re a chef and we want to interview you in the kitchen, it’s obviously best to choose a time when your staff doesn’t have their busiest prep day. If we’re filming in an office with a big bay of windows, we don’t want to film when the harsh morning or afternoon light is beaming in and casting drastic shadows on the subject or background. Always think ahead of time about the nuances of particular locations.
Last but certainly not least, we want to think of a location that is relevant to the story we’re telling. If we’re telling the story of a baseball player’s rise to fame, we don’t want to see them cooped up in an office, we want to see them in the locker room or on the field. Our job is to bring the story to life, so we don’t want the audience struggling to visualize it as it’s being told.
Also, be sure to think about any props or set dressing that we can utilize to enhance the story. We may not always use them, but it’s great to have options. If you run a construction company, we may want to see your tools and hard hat in the background. Again, it’s all about fully immersing the audience in the story that we’re telling.
When possible, we like to meet ahead of time to scout the location and figure out potential limitations. If that doesn’t work, we ask that you please send pictures so we have a better idea of what our options are when we arrive to film. Filmmaking is a very collaborative process so let’s work together to tell the best story possible.