What Does Dailies Mean in Film?

What Does Dailies Mean in Film? Are you familiar with the term ‘dailies’?

If you work in a film production then you may hear about this term. If it is new to you then let’s learn quickly about it. As a film student or film lover you are going to learn today about a new term. Learn something new is always a matter of pleasure. Isn’t it?

Let’s begin with an enlightening definition.

Acquaintance with ‘Dailies’

The entire raw footage which is viewed by director or DOP before editing is called dailies. Dailies re watched at every day after filming ends to find out any mistake. Dailies deliver a clear idea of how the filming and the actors’ performances are progressing each day. This term broadly used in the U.S.

Who Needs to Watch Dailies and Why?

Editor is not only the person who has to view raw footage. Several members including cinematographer, producers, director and actors, watch the dailies in an auditorium or screening room, to observe how the film is progressing.

Dailies allow film crews to examine exactly what images and audio captured the day before to detect technical issues such as duplicate, dirt/scratched or out of focus films. It also helps the director to sort out appropriate assortment of camera angles. The director also can evaluate the performance of the actor. He observes individual performances attentively as well as the entire aesthetics and cinematography.

Dailies may be boring to watch for its excess long duration without any cut. Filmmakers have to watch individual long drawn performance. In spite of, filmmakers and producers prefer to view dailies. Watching dailies before the cuts, allows the filmmakers to inspect what they’re doing right or not. Through dailies it revealed whether any shot/ scene needs re shoot.

The director takes notes for future shoot days and make sure if they’re on track or not. Producers determine through dailies whether their respective expectation fulfilled or not. As they are the investors and their cost involvement with the film making that is why they have to watch dailies to detect progression of the film.

Early Dailies Vs Today Dailies

The traditional dailies in early ages of film history defines that the first positive prints made by the laboratory from the negative photographed. In those days, filmmakers wouldn’t be able to see every day’s raw footage which they captured on celluloid film.

During the typical filming of a motion picture, a movie camera captures the image on 35 mm film and a separate audio recorder that records the sound on-set. The film negative developed and printed or telecined so that the images viewed on a projector or video monitor. Early dailies screened in theater.

By the advancement of the technology, today dailies are at the palm of your hand. Filmmakers now a days watch them instantly. While using a digital motion picture camera, the image and sound often recorded simultaneously to video tape or hard disk in a format that immediately viewed on a monitor. At present most of the editing done on computer based non-linear editing systems which use a video copy of the dailies.

Ending Speech

I hope readers are now clear about the concept of dailies in film. One question still may arise that feature film makers need to watch dailies then what about animation film makers? Do they also need to watch dailies? Yes, they also need to watch dailies though animation films are made by CGI. In animation, dailies are also called rushes or sweat box sessions. I will talk elaborately about animation dailies in another article. Happy read 🙂