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73 votes
Accepted

Are there any rules around when something can be described as "based on a true story"?

There are no rules as to when or how the term "Based on a true story/real events" can be used. Sometimes it is a legit claim, but sometimes it is a pure marketing decision to fool the audience. ...
George Derpi's user avatar
  • 1,931
61 votes
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What is a "soap"?

TLDR: A "Soap" is a serialized show that's about ordinary people having interpersonal drama. There's not a high concept, story arc, external villains, or greater purpose. Don't confuse &...
Harper - Reinstate Monica's user avatar
47 votes
Accepted

Shots where the characters are small in relation to a still background: do these have a name?

It's an example of 'negative space'. Mr Robot plays with this a lot, very effectively. It also uses a lot of lower quadrant framing & even adds to the negative space by removing the leading room ...
Tetsujin's user avatar
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40 votes
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How did the word "Bollywood" originate?

Bollywood is a portmanteau (a blend of linguistic words), which is derived from Bombay (currently known as Mumbai) and Hollywood, California. The name "Bollywood" is a portmanteau derived ...
A J's user avatar
  • 57.9k
40 votes

What do abbreviations in movie scripts stand for?

These abbreviations represent the type of scene and the area where it's being filmed. From this glossary and this page from abbreviations used in movie scripts, EXT. => Exterior INT. => ...
A J's user avatar
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37 votes
Accepted

Why do so many cinema industries have "wood" in their name?

1) Hollywood: 1, 2 The name Hollywood was coined by H. J. Whitley, the “Father of Hollywood.” Whitely bought 500 acres from E. C. Hurd; Hurd’s wife’s friend (stay with me here), Daeida Wilcox, ...
Nikhil Eshvar's user avatar
36 votes

Is there a term referring to the transgression that often begins a horror film?

It's not specific to horror movies, but the event or action that kicks off the plot of a movie is typically called it's inciting incident. This is a literary term that applies to almost anything with ...
KutuluMike's user avatar
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36 votes

Is there a word or phrase for when the movie tricks you for a moment like this?

Not sure if there is a term of art in Cinematography to refer to the suspense aspect, but the editing technique is a film transition called an L-Cut. An L Cut is an editing technique that results in ...
cde's user avatar
  • 68k
34 votes
Accepted

Is "Runner" A Movie Industry Term?

Is this movie industry jargon? Yes, it is. A "Runner" is an industry term for a low level staff member..a so-called (in US parlance) "gopher" because they "go for things"...
Paulie_D's user avatar
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33 votes
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Is there a given name for "fake documentaries" posing as educational programming?

2 different terms cover it. Docufiction: is the cinematographic combination of documentary and fiction, this term often meaning narrative film. It is a film genre which attempts to capture reality ...
cde's user avatar
  • 68k
30 votes

Is there a word or phrase for when the movie tricks you for a moment like this?

The screenwriting term for what you describe is a "prelap". Prelap — Wikipedia Prelap is a screenwriting term that means the dialogue from the next scene precedes the cut, and the beginning ...
nsfnotthrowingaway's user avatar
28 votes
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Looking for the name of an animation technique (1930's–50's) which uses a rotating wheel to create a parallax effect

It's called "The Stereoptical Process". From the Wikipedia entry for Max Fleischer: "These color cartoons were often augmented with Fleischer's patented three-dimensional effects ...
blobbymcblobby's user avatar
27 votes
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What makes an actor an A-lister?

TL;DR "A-list" actors are exceptionally successful, their notoriety extends beyond the silver screen, and their name guarantees a box office hit. Long Explanation: As per Oxford Definition: ...
A J's user avatar
  • 57.9k
27 votes
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Is there a name for a trope where protagonist's family members are kidnapped in the climax of the movie?

There are multiple tropes for it: TV Tropes has a index for such tropes : I Have Your Index: It may shock you to know that I Have Your Index. How I came to obtain it is not important at this ...
Ankit Sharma's user avatar
  • 119k
23 votes
Accepted

What's the meaning of abbreviations in credits? (ASC, PGA, ...)

Generally, these abbreviations you see indicate a society or union that person is a member of. Since such societies are very distinctive and respected ones, people add it to their names in credits. ...
A J's user avatar
  • 57.9k
23 votes
Accepted

Why are porn films called blue films?

It's unknown: Why off-color movies were called “blue” remains a matter of conjecture. Although one definition of “blue” has been “lewd” since the 19th century, its application to movies might ...
BCdotWEB's user avatar
  • 49.2k
23 votes

How do you refer to key objects like the Death Star from Star Wars?

Late edit The OP's clarification means this takes an entirely different turn. The answer below is what the movie makers call these. A seller of 'imitation' objects would have to call them replicas, ...
Tetsujin's user avatar
  • 53.4k
21 votes
Accepted

Is there any term for this when a movie doesn't end as its plot suggests?

Specifically, it's a sub trope of Plot Twists called a "Twist Ending". A plot twist can happen at any time in the film. When it happens near the end to change the meaning of the entire film, it is a ...
cde's user avatar
  • 68k
19 votes

How do you refer to key objects like the Death Star from Star Wars?

I would tend to think that something as iconic as the Death Star or the Millenium Falcon would deserve a better name If you're looking for a name for something that's iconic, it's (unsurprisingly) an ...
Flater's user avatar
  • 26.8k
16 votes

What do we call a person who designs the architecture or armors of a medieval fantasy film?

The hierarchy of production design, below the actual Director, of course, radiates outwards and downwards like a family tree with more branches and people the lower you go. At the top is the ...
Tetsujin's user avatar
  • 53.4k
15 votes

Is Justice League 2021 a cut or a remake?

It is a cut with a newly shot Epilogue section I do not believe you could use the term 'remake', which implies an entirely (or almost entirely) re-shot movie. A remake can have different director, ...
iandotkelly's user avatar
  • 53.4k
14 votes

What makes an actor an A-lister?

The terms "A-list" and "Bankable star" are intricately related, and basically revolve around how much profit an actor's role in a movie can bring in for a studio. The term "A-list" has become an ...
Ghoti and Chips's user avatar
14 votes
Accepted

Why do shows say "Netflix Original" when they are reruns from other channels?

As stated on this Wikipedia page: Netflix's original productions also include continuations of cancelled series from other networks, as well as licensing or co-producing content from international ...
BCdotWEB's user avatar
  • 49.2k
13 votes
Accepted

Is there a name for when a creator plays a long-term character in their own motion picture?

The trope you are thinking of is: Descended Creator This is when a crewmember or executive for a show makes an appearance in a part that would ordinarily be cast with a professional actor — or the ...
Nikhil Eshvar's user avatar
13 votes
Accepted

How do you refer to key objects like the Death Star from Star Wars?

I agree with many of the already existing answers, but I would like to add a little more... In Star Wars' case The Death Star(s) can be seen as a an iconic visual prop (model, set piece), a character (...
Darth Locke's user avatar
  • 23.2k
13 votes
Accepted

What's the proper term for individual TV episodes that feature multiple episodic storylines?

These can be referred to as anthology episodes, in which the episode consists of several shorter, potentially unrelated stories. The stories are often connected by an overarching plot, setting, or ...
Nuclear Hoagie's user avatar
12 votes

Why do so many cinema industries have "wood" in their name?

They are inspired from Hollywood, Los Angeles. Wikipedia gives a full list of Hollywood inspired nick names. Hollywood-inspired nicknames, most starting with the first letter(s) of the location ...
Nog Shine's user avatar
  • 11k
12 votes

What is a "soap"?

Wikipedia's definition of soap opera is obviously flawed. If it was a perfect definition of soap opera you wouldn't have any questions about which shows are soap opera and which are not. Of course, ...
M. A. Golding's user avatar
11 votes
Accepted

Term for movies taking place during the main events of its predecessor?

What do you call a movie taking place during the events of its previous movie? It's Sidequel, as per Wikipedia: A sidequel is a story which portrays events that occur at the same time as the ...
Ankit Sharma's user avatar
  • 119k

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