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Filmmaking 101 with WWI Virtual Academy: 8 terms you should know while on set

A film set can be an overwhelming place when you’re first starting out. Between the hustle-bustle of cast and crew members, props, and equipment, this is a site of constant activity. Like any other industry, the film world also has its own set of terms that are used daily while filming. While our online filmmaking courses dives into film lingo in detail, we’ve compiled a list of the most commonly used ones in this article – read on to know what they mean and you just might feel more at ease while on set!


1) Call Sheet
A key essential at the site of every film production, a call sheet is a schedule given to the cast and crew, put together based on the director’s shot list. It lets them know where and when they will be needed on set, on any given day of filming. Along with the daily shooting schedule, it also tells the team about weather conditions, parking regulations, and other relevant details. The call sheet is usually crafted by the Assistant Director.


2) Crew Call
A crew call is that time of the day when shooting is scheduled to begin – simply put, it’s the green light to go ahead with the day’s shoot, to get the camera’s rolling and for the crew to get their work mode on!


3) Retake
A retake comes into the picture when the director or a crew member feels like the scene could have come out better. To put it in a nutshell, a retake is when a scene is shot again.


4) Hot Set
A hot set is a film set that is being actively used and needs to be left as is because it will be used again for shooting soon. This is a cue for crew members to not touch or move any elements unless specifically asked to do so.


5) Check the Gate
You know it’s time to check the most recent take to make sure no impurities like hair, bugs, or arm-waving video bombers have interfered with the lens when the director says “Check the gate!”


6) Call Time
This is the reporting time set by the production for the cast and crew to arrive at the studio or the location at which filming is taking place. There’s a subsequent set call time too when an actor is expected on set after getting their hair, makeup, and wardrobe in place. Pre-Call is when a department or individual has a call time earlier than the crew call.


7) Blocking
Blocking involves deciding where and how actors will move and which line of dialogue they will deliver in relation to the placement of cameras and other set elements.  It’s like planning and ensuring things like the actors, extras, crew and equipment are all moving in harmony with each other.This can be thought of as a rehearsal, and the smoother this rehearsal goes, the faster the principal photography,once shooting begins.


8) Martini Shot
The last camera setup of the day. Announced on set so everyone knows to pack up any gear not in use.


Now that you have the inside scoop on these film terms, working on a film set should be all that much easier!

With WWI Virtual Academy’s Online Filmmaking Courses, equip yourself with the skills and terminology every aspiring filmmaker should be aware of! To sign up, call us on +91 (0)22-62716067 or +91 (0)22-62716069⁣ or by visiting