Looping Terms 101

We’ve already tackled some things you might want to know when handling a specific cue. How about an “all skate” cue. (when the whole group or several from the group are working together) What are some of the things you may hear? Free and Clear, Give and Take, Down the line, cross by’s, donuts, etc are some of the things you’ll need to understand.

If the cue is fairly sparse, meaning you don’t see a whole lot of people in the background, you might be asked to have a lot of “give and take”, meaning don’t talk over each other. In a cafe scene for example, you may pair up in 2’s “giving and taking” so you only hear one table’s conversation at a time. They may also have you go “down the line” (literally you are standing at the mic in a horseshoe shaped LINE and speak when the person next to you is done). “Free and Clears” are also cues that are usually done “down the line” or by the loop leader pointing at who goes next with no overlapping. Make sure your volume is LOUD as these are usually placed where needed by the editor later. A street scene is a great place for “free and clears”. You might yell “My car is two blocks from here” and the next person down the line might yell “I’ll see you later” and so on.  Always keep going until you are told to stop or you see the picture stop. You can always ask the Group Leader to clarify how you should tackle the cue if you are not sure.

Sometimes the scene is very busy and has lots of movement in it. To tackle that,  groups will either “mull about” (meaning you can move a bit and go to different people and talk…a party scene is a good example of this) or they will do “cross by’s” or “donuts”.  A “cross by” is just that. The group is divided and you take turns crossing by the mic from one side to the other (usually with a partner) making sure to always speak towards the mic. (school hallways, malls, busy streets are good examples of when you might use a cross by) A “donut” is when the group stands behind the mic in a circle (hence the term donut) and keeps walking in a circle (again making sure to face the mic when you are by it). You’ll talk when you get close to the mic and stop when you’ve crossed it. There is the rare occasion when you will continue to talk no matter where you are in the donut formation but that is RARE. A good example for when a donut would be used is a scene in an airport or hospital.

A few more things to note…”cross by’s” are also referred to as “pass by’s” and NEVER use cuss words or Proper Nouns (Coke, Toyota, Starbucks, etc)  in looping unless you are told otherwise… Do you feel like an expert? Well then go get those looping jobs!!!!!

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