Film and Television Terms

AVID – Avid is an industry-standard editing suite used to edit movies, T.V. shows, etc. “Avid” is the name of a software package, but is often used to describe an entire editing machine running the program as well.

BARN DOORS – Handy blinders on the sides of lights that can be used to keep light from going everywhere. They can also be used to clip on a lighting gel. They get very hot when a light is on, so it is best to wear work gloves when adjusting them.

BOOM MIC or SHOTGUN MIC – A long, slim directional microphone. Usually held on a FISHPOLE or boom pole, just outside of the camera’s view. It is used primarily for recording dialogue.

BOUNCE CARD – A white, silver, or gold card used for soft indirect lighting of the subject by bouncing light off the card. Can also be used to provide a gentle brightening of shadow areas. Especially useful out-of-doors as it does not require power.

B-ROLL – The alternate footage shot to intercut with the primary shots used in a program. It is frequently used for cutaway shots.

C-STAND – a “C”-shaped stand used to hold anything from lights, to light- blocking “flags”, to miscellaneous bits of equipment.

FILM – “Film” refers to the celluloid media on which movies are printed and recorded.

FISHPOLE – A long, extendable pole most commonly used to hold a boom mic over the subject to be recorded.

GAFF TAPE – A tough, fabric backed adhesive tape used in the motion picture, television, stage (music and theater), and other entertainment industries.

GEL – A semi-translucent piece of material that is clipped in front of a light, used for changing its color or quality.

GOBO – Any piece of material with holes cut in it to create patterns of projected light. It is placed in front of a light source, and the light shines through the holes, creating interesting effects.

KEY LIGHT – The main light in a traditional 3-point lighting setup. It is the source of illumination for the focal point of the shot.

LIGHT KIT – A transportation-friendly, durable case that contains several lights, stands, scrims, and gels.

SCRIM – A mesh screen placed directly in front of a light, used to control how much light is striking the set.

VIDEO – The technology of capturing, recording, processing, transmitting, and reconstructing moving pictures, typically using electronic signals or digital media.





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