Short of the Week

Behind the Scene

Steadicam operator Yousheng Tang looks at the hilarious activities that go on behind the scenes at a film shoot via a well-executed, single long-take shot.

I’ve always been a big fan of long, single take shots. The one from The Social Network last year got a lot of attention, and illustrious directors like Scorcese and Welles have famous ones in their filmographies too. My favorite example has long been from Brian de Palma’s film Snake Eyes, which singlehandedly made memorable what was otherwise a pretty bad film.

Now I have a favorite in short film too. Yousheng Tang is a steadicam operator, and like many people in the film industry in various capacities, got tired of waiting for projects that would showcase his skills, so instead made one of his own. Behind the Scene is that film, and it is a 7 minute single-take shot that lovingly mocks the characters-types that populate your average commercial shoot.

A lot of you are in film yourselves, so you’ll find yourself smiling as you recognize some of the situations that pop up. The writing is the weakness of the film, but the craft on display in executing the shot, and the smiles that result from seeing what is on the otherside of the camera, make up for it.

Co-Founder of Short of the Week, Sondhi lives in Brooklyn working as a Curator for Vimeo. Follow his musings on online video, direct distribution and branded content: @jasondhi.
  • Anonymous

    Refresh my memory as to which shot in The Social Network was a one-take Steadicam wonder?

  • Jason Sondhi

    @b3film:disqus That would be the opening shot, the one that follows Zuckerberg across campus. 

  • Anonymous

    I was going to leave a reply months ago because I was pretty sure, but now that I’m watching the film as I type this, there is absolutely no steadicam shot in the opening of the social network. It’s all on sticks.

  • Shane Anderson

    Yep, All on sticks all broken and cut up. no tracking shot, let alone a long take…
    Panic Room on the other hand…

  • Nicole Jeon

    I agree the writing is the flaw but the smile makes up for it. Can anyone tell me what the song is at the end? I’ve heard it before, but I just can’t remember where from.