Researching Film Openings

To begin the course and get some ideas for a film opening, we watched various film openings (from different genres) to see what a typical film opening contains. The two film openings we watched were: ‘The Lovely Bones‘ and ‘Gone Girl‘. We did timelines of each to see how the two compared and what was shown in each, at different times.


The Lovely Bones

‘The Lovely Bones’ is described as a “fantasy/drama” on Wikipedia so, it was interesting to see how the film incorporated this genre into the opening.

0:00:00 – 0:00:20 : Paramount logo sequence

0:00:21 – 0:00:40 : Dreamworks logo sequence and calm music begins to play

0:00:41 – 0:00:50 : Film 4 logo sequence

0:00:52 : Fade in of “Dreamworks Pictures and Film 4 Present”

0:01:00 : Fade in of “A Wingnut Films Production”

0:01:07 : Fade in of the start of the scene

0:01:20 : Narrative begins

0:02:08 : Title fades in over scene


Gone Girl

‘Gone Girl’ belongs to a different genre to ‘The Lovely Bones’ as on Wikipedia, ‘Gone Girl’ is described as a “thriller”. ‘Gone Girl’ has a very different opening sequence to establish the genre.

0:00:00 – 0:00:07 : 20th Century Fox logo sequence and uneasy and uncomfortable music begins to play

0:00:08 – 0:00:17 : Regency logo sequence

0:00:18 : Fade in of “Twentieth Century Fox and Regency Enterprises present”

0:00:20 : Narrative of protagonist starts

0:00:22 : Fade in of “A David Fincher Film”

0:00:25 : Fade in of the start of the scene

0:00:47 : Fade out of the scene

0:00:48 : Names of actors fade in and then fade out

0:00:54 : Film Title is shown then fades out

0:00:57 – 0:01:34 : New establishing shots and names of cast and crew appear every second

0:01:35 : Wide shot and new scene of protagonist stood in the street

0:01:38: Long shot showing different angle of the character

0:01:43: Same angle as opening wide shot but as a long shot

0:01:50: Panoramic shot to show movement and location of character


From looking at both openings of different genres, it is interesting to see what they both have in common as well as the differences. Both feature a narrative, a non diegetic score, fade ins of the text and the title being shown over the scene which is currently being shown. ‘Gone Girl’ was a lot more fast paced than ‘The Lovely Bones’ and the credits of ‘Gone Girl’ features the whole crew and cast. Both are very similar and different in many aspects but, I will take both into account when creating my own opening.