The art of making a movie trailer that thrills and excites is often a conundrum that video editors struggle long and hard with. There are many things to grapple with when getting a trailer just right, and these become even more prescient when you consider the hundred or even thousands of hours that have already been spent on editing and producing the full-length feature.
Central among your concerns when putting together a winning trailer that grabs the viewer’s attention and compels them to watch a movie should be the music that brings the trailer to life. The link between music and emotion is no secret, and getting your musical accompaniment right may just make the difference to whether the movie sinks or swims at the box office. In this article, we take a dive into the nuts and bolts of the methods that underpin the production of a killer movie trailer.
1. Watch the Movie
It sounds obvious, but the first step to creating a hit trailer that is in keeping with the feel and message of the movie itself is to watch it. This should help you to deconstruct the movie plot, giving you the building blocks for your trailer. Remember that the trailer should contain its own plotline. When you have worked out the sequence and the frames of your trailer, you can then select a piece or pieces of music that help to tell this story.
2. Licensing and Media Companies
No matter the size and scale of your production, you are going to need to make sure that you have the correct permission in place from the artists if you want to use their music in your movie or movie trailer. Navigating copyright regulations can be a bit of a minefield, and you may find that it is impossible to secure the right to use the music of well-known artists if you attempt to contact them yourself.
One of the best ways to circumvent the rigmarole that always goes with finding the right royalty-free music for your trailer is to use a media company like FirstCom. These companies have massive libraries that contain a diverse range of music for movie/TV trailers of any type, whether sci-fi, rom-com or horror. And the best bit about this is that they own the rights to all the music that they stock!
3. Go Tried-and-Tested
When making a trailer, you do not have to go about reinventing the wheel. It probably will not surprise most people that there is a tried-and-tested formula that is used for the vast majority of expert trailer-makers that never fails to grab an audience’s attention. The best way to get to grips with this is to watch a number of trailers of the same genre of your movie and note down the similarities that you observe in them to use in your own production.
So here we have it – the three most important things to bear in mind when choosing music for movie trailers!