I did the Return to the Silent Era video assignment for the Edward Scissorhands trailer.

The process was relatively simple:

  • I downloaded the YouTube video of the trailer and imported it into iMovie.
  • In iMovie, I made the clip black & white as well as added the effect to make it look like an older movie.
  • I split the clip after each chunk of speech and added in the title screens with the dialogue written in them. I made sure the title screens matched the silent film style (black and white, script-like font, etc.). I adjusted the length each title screen would play for depending on how much dialogue there was. If the title screen just had one word, I made it 1 second long. If it was a really long chunk of speech, I made it 4 seconds long. If it fell somewhere in-between, then I made it 2 seconds long. The only way to really figure this out is to watch is play through and see if you aren’t rushed to read it all.
  • Once I had put in all the title screens with dialogue, I think muted all the clips from the trailer.
  • I downloaded a song from the movie soundtrack and used that as the music, adjusting what part of it played to fit what was going on visually.
  • After watching it through one last time and making any final adjustments, I saved the file and uploaded it to YouTube.

I think Edward Scissorhands was a good choice for this assignment as there wasn’t too much dialogue that it wouldn’t translate easily to a silent film. It also has a tone throughout it that works well with the melodrama silent films seem to have about them.