A movie trailer uses dynamic images, music and sound effects to promote a film and get people excited to head to the theater. Big budget film companies use video editing programs that include AVID Symphony, Final Cut Pro and motion graphics software such as Adobe After Effects to achieve the optimal visual effect. Independent filmmakers and those without movie studio budgets, often choose Adobe Premiere Pro for editing, which has plenty of tools and templates to make a very effective film advertisement.
Open Adobe Premiere Pro and select "New" project. Click "File," then "Import" to bring in the images and sound you would like to use for your movie trailer. Trailers employ appropriate copyright-free music, sound effects, an announcer-recorded script, pre-made graphics and video to create a professional trailer.
Locate your media in the project bin and drag the music and announcer audio clip onto separate audio tracks in the "Timeline Sequence." Adjust the audio volume in two ways: click the "Collapse-Expand" arrow connected to the audio track and raise or lower the yellow volume line; or right-click the audio clip, select "Audio Gain" and change the "dB" setting.
Cut up your announcer's audio track so you can add pauses for movie action and sound effects. Select the "Razor" tool from the tools menu and click on the announcer's audio. Cutting up the announcer clips allows you to move them around on the audio track.
Click and drag the movie video to "Video 1." If that footage contains audio, make sure to place it below the existing audio clips. Listen to the announcer's words and place the appropriate video directly above that audio section. Click the "Razor" tool to cut up the video just as you did with the announcer's audio. Change the length of clips by clicking either edge and dragging the bracket arrow longer or shorter.
Select "Title," "New Title," then "Default Still" to open the "Title" tool. Locate the "Type" tool in the "Title Tools" menu and click inside the "Monitor." Add words and phrases that enhance your movie trailer. Use "Font Properties" and "Fill" colors that will look aesthetically pleasing superimposed over your video or a black area. Click the "Close" icon when you are finished with your title. Repeat the process for additional titles.
Click and drag your titles to a new video track above your existing footage. Add a "Dissolve" to the title by opening "Video Transitions" in the effects bin, clicking the "Dissolve" folder and dragging a "Cross Dissolve" to the beginning or end. Change the title transition length by grabbing the bracket arrow and dragging it to the left or right.
Grab the timeline "Playhead," drag it back and press the space bar to preview what you've created. Continue to adjust video and audio clips, balance the audio volume, and add titles and effects to polish your movie trailer.
Things You'll Need
Copyright-free music and sound effects
Movie video or images
Audio adjustments can easily be controlled using audio transitions. Razor an audio clip where you would like it to fade up, then apply a transition to the cut. Lower the left clip's volume, and raise the volume on the right clip. The audio dissolve will blend the two clips and gradually increase the volume.
Be careful when dragging a new clip of video and audio to a timeline that you don't place it over the top of existing footage. Add a new track or place the new clip farther down on the timeline.
- Total Film; How to Make a Movie Trailer; Josh Winning; April 2010
- Independent Filmmaker Contracts; How Can I Make a Movie Trailer?; September 2010
- Lights Film School; How to Create Film and Documentary Trailers; January 2010
- Media College: Making Titles in Adobe Premiere Pro
- Media College: Transitions in Adobe Premiere
- Fest21: How to Make a Good Trailer
- Four Hour Work Week; How to Make a Movie Trailer for Your Product; Tim Ferriss