Filmmaking / Directing : Trailers by Dru Holley

Dru Holley


What is the formula for making a trailer?

Regina Lee

@Dru, that's such an open-ended question, as there are many types of trailers, e.g. teaser trailer, full length trailers, green band trailer, red band trailer, book trailer, TV spots, etc. There's no set formula. Typically, a marketing exec will determine what element they want to focus on in the trailer(s). Some rely more on visuals, some on story, some on music, some on character, some on one specific set-piece, etc. Perhaps you could break down some trailers you like by watching them on YouTube, noting the elements within and how they make you feel. Studios have the marketing dollars to "test screen" different versions of trailers, a luxury which indie filmmakers tend not to have. But you can "test" your trailer with friends for free. Maybe also check out a creative agency's website like Trailer Park or Ant Farm, and break down some of their trailers.

Shrirang Nargund

your trailer should be in tune with genre of the content. the treatment, text, editing, music etc. should enhance the impact. for instance, you cannot treat the romantic trailer same as the thriller.

Everin L James

@reginalee What's the difference between a red band and green band trailer.?

Regina Lee

@Everin, please Google green band trailer and look at the image. You will see it's been "approved for all audiences." If you Google red band, you'll see it's for "restricted audiences." Essentially, it's like an R-rated trailer. The purpose is to attract a certain audience that see R movies.

Kristina Garant

when I watch a trailer I was to understand what the story is about but don't want too much revealed that the movie is transparent..I would say just get your main point across and show talent and creativeness so people are intrigued by your project.

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