Even if you have a great idea for a video, a great script and an enthusiastic team, it can be disheartening if the final piece doesn’t look professional. If you want to know how to make your videos look cinematic, read on…

Find the right locations

One way to make videos look more cinematic that is often overlooked is to choose the right locations. Even if you have great camera work, acting and music, if the background is just the only free conference room or the car park then it will look unprofessional (unless your video is about a car park). Think about where the scene should be set, not just what you have available.

Dynamic, moving shots

Dynamic shots are a cinematic staple. There’s plenty of room for static shots, but if there’s nothing but those then the video will feel flat and it will be hard to get any real sense of action or urgency. The camera work should make the audience feel like they are part of the action; tracking shots, tilts, pans and zooms are all at your disposal – use them!

Use proper lighting

Using proper lighting will make your videos look more cinematic. It’s not just about making the room bright enough so that the camera isn’t grainy; learn to use light and shadow effectively in your shot and it will instantly become more atmospheric, dramatic and professional-looking.

Use actors rather than friends/employees

Using your friends or relatives as the stars of your video may be the most frugal option, but probably not the best if you want to make your videos look cinematic. Dedicated actors will do a much better job at bringing your script to life, even if there is no dialogue, and should be quicker to work with. However, if you want to do a ‘behind the scenes’ style video, you will be better off using your real employees, to show the human side of your brand.

Make use of colour correction and colour grading

Colour correction and colour grading are essential if you want to make your videos look cinematic – quite simply, these processes separate the amateurs from the pros. You will need some practice to get to grips with both of these, but it is worth the investment. You can take a look at our previous blog explaining these two processes here.

Use wider aspect ratios/use masks to make it look more like cinemascope

Nothing says cinematic like widescreen. Shooting videos in squarer aspect ratios will, at best, look like old TV, and shooting specifically for mobile viewing may work for short, candid promos, but they will never look cinematic. Either shoot in a wide aspect ratio or use masks to further exaggerate the effect. Bonus marks for wide angle shots set on a beautiful vista!

Hire professional videographers

The one sure way to make your video look cinematic is to hire professional videographers who have experience in creating quality videos. Not only do professional videographers have all the necessary equipment to create that beautiful cinematic look, but the first-hand experience of producing those types of videos.

If you employ these tips when you come to make your next video, you should see that it looks much more cinematic. However, many of these techniques are best executed in the hands of a professional videographer, and hiring one to help with your video may save you a lot of time in the long run. If you are looking for filming and editing services, you can get in touch with us for more details.