A-Roll and B-Roll - What does it mean?
A-Roll and B-Roll, we hear that often. Sometimes even “Epic cinematic B-Roll”.
But what does it mean?
Well, it’s fairly simple, the terms come from the old days of linear film editing.
Stating Wikipedia: In film and television production, B-roll, B roll, B-reel or B reel is supplemental or alternative footage intercut with the main shot. The term A-roll referring to the main footage has fallen out of use.
- Main shot, Main subject
– Here me talking to the camera
- Illustration shots
-Here me editing the video
Why is it important?
The first use of B-Roll is to break up A-Roll. Adding some shots to make it more interesting.
It’s also used to cover edit points. Any stutter/hums.
As well, as the name suggests it “Illustration shot”, it’s made to show what you’re talking about.
Think about it, a news anchor wouldn’t be as interesting if there wasn’t any illustration shots.
B-ROLL on Youtube
We can also add a little mention for YouTube, as the term B-Roll there is nowadays used for pure illustration shots with a lot of movement, slow-motion parts and quick transitions.