The craft of making a movie trailer is sacred. It takes time, care, skill, and most importantly a movie. A trailer is the introduction to a film. It is how a person learns of a movie. It is where the plot takes shape, where characters are introduced, where the soundtrack sweeps you away from the real world. Trailers are more important to a film than many people realize. But only a select few can make trailers. The average person cannot and will not participate in the creation of a movie trailer. It is a specialized job done by professionals.
So what of the common man? How does he take part in that sacred process of trailer making? Well, it must be with a fake trailer. Not only must a person want to make a trailer, but they must also have an idea for an entire film. For to make a film trailer, there must at the very least be the idea of a film. The fake movie trailer is a craft all its own. Originated from real movie trailers, of course, but they take a certain level of creativity. One must have an idea for a fake film. Then one must edit or shoot to make a trailer that gives the audience the impression that this film truly does exist. A great fake trailer aficionado can make a trailer so bold, so real, so powerful, that viewers will rush to theaters hoping to buy tickets in advance, only to realize too late that there is no movie to buy tickets too.
This goal is the same as that of a real trailer. Fake trailers are greatly influenced by the real. Fake trailers follow a similar format to real ones. They ought to reveal parts of the plot, the characters, the score, and scenery. But like real trailers, fake trailers must walk that line. They must reveal enough but not too much. A fake trailer should not quench one’s thirst, but merely give a taste. Reveal something, but not everything. Real movie trailers leave people waiting for months with anticipation. Fake movie trailers should do the same.
The rules for a fake trailer are broad. Use footage from a previous work. Shoot your own footage. It doesn’t matter. Fake trailers can be about a character you make up or one as famous as Superman. The only crucial point is that the fake trailer must be for a movie that does not exist. Otherwise, a fake trailer maker is free to let their imagination run wild. A fake trailer about the next Spiderman movie? Certainly! A trailer about a psychopathic comedian? Of course! A trailer about a man-eating bear who endures an existential life-crisis? Delightful! Fake trailers should let the imagination run wild. So go, enjoy yourself. All you need is some basic editing software, a love of film, and a little too much free time, and you are free to enjoy the spoils of the fake movie trailer genre.
The future is bright for fake movie trailers. And by bright, I mean exactly the same as the past and present. The strength and weakness of the fake trailer genre seems to be the same. There is not much change in the genre. Fake trailers will always just be trailers for movies that will never exist. As long as real movie trailers continue to stay the same, (which for the most part they have) so will fake trailers. That’s the key.
As a genre, fake trailers mimic the real trailers. Without that mimicry, the genre falls apart. The to examples above from movies made decades apart are a bit different, but serve the same purpose. Reveal the main characters of the two films and the plot without giving away too much information. Talk about the director and the actors, use some dramatic music, and some particularly beautiful shots from the film. That’s the formula for a typical and successful movie trailer.
The same goes for fake trailers. Trailers, unknown or in real movies or tv shows, follow the same general outline as the real movie trailers linked above. That’s why the future of the genre looks to stay the same. As real movie trailers have remained similar for decades, it can only be assumed that they will continue to do so. For this reason, the upstart genre of fake movie trailers will continue to remain the same for the foreseeable future.
The genre should stick to its roots. It began as something for fans to do in their free time. Now it has made its way into media like television and film. Fake trailers have millions of views on the Internet. All of the genre’s success stemmed from sticking to its roots. And nothing about that should change now.
Fake movie trailers developed, of course, from real movie trailers. They are the result of a development in technology. In the age of iMovie and Final Cut, now anyone with a basic computer and a desire to try can make a fake movie trailer. To try and make a fake movie trailer before these applications would be a massive undertaking. You would have to shoot and hand-cut frames together to make a trailer for a movie that would never exist. It would just be too much work.
Today, it’s a lot easier. Making a fake trailer just requires a love of movies and a little too much free time.The earliest fake trailer on Youtube was uploaded in 2007. 7 years later, and fake trailers have become a relatively large portion of the parody videos on the Internet. There seem to be two different categories of fake trailers: those with footage cut from real movies works, or newly shot footage made into a totally new concept.
The two categories seem to attract similar numbers of people. The measure for how many viewers a fake trailer gets seems to be based on it’s publicity. For instance the “Man of Steel 2” trailer, has over 3 million views and was recently publicized on several blogs. The Dora the Explorer trailer from above has over 17 million views. What’s important to viewers is the popularity and relevance of the subject. Trailers about famous superheroes or TV shows get a lot of views while trailers for more cult followings like fake Seinfeld movies get less views.
Fake trailers did not come from a film genre per se, but they did come from the film industry. Fake trailers allow the average movie enthusiast to get involved in a small way. Making a fake trailer is easy, and for those people out there who want to be make movies but don’t have the capabilities to get into the business, making one is a great way to have fun in the movie “industry.” Making a short, 2 or 3 minute video can be fun and also inspire people to find a passion in filming and editing. It’s a great way to test the movie-making waters.
Ever wanted to make a movie? Did you then realize you have none of the necessary funds or resources to do so? Well so did the creators of the first fake movie trailers! All you need is some basic editing software (iMovie), a little too much free time, and bam, you’ve got yourself a fake movie trailer. Appearing somewhere in the early 2000s on Youtube, fake movie trailers serve several purposes, almost none of which were called for. The trailers create a supply for which there was no demand. But boy can they be funny! The trailers can be based on real events, tv shows, other movies, or just about anything.
The main viewers of these trailers are the average Youtube procrastinators, looking for something unproductive to occupy there time. If there is one commonality between all fake movie trailers, it is there comedic value. Finding a serious or dramatic fake trailer is a difficult task. Most are made as comedies. There is not much reward for the maker or viewer in creating a 2-minute sad, dramatic, depressing trailer for a movie that will never exist. So the genre has fallen almost exclusively into comedy.
There aren’t many limitations or restrictions on what goes into a fake movie trailer. Mainly, they have to be as similar to real movie trailers as possible. If it serves it purpose, after watching a fake trailer, the viewer should promptly search the title online to see when it comes to theaters, only to be immediately disappointed.
Most of the fake trailers have similar traits to real movie trailers. A cheesy voice-over describing the action. Over-dramatic music played to clips of actors staring off into the distance. Fast cuts between shots. Minimal plot explanation. Over-dramatization of the plot. By whatever means possible, it’s important for the fake trailers to seem as realistic. Despite the lack of any resources necessary to make one, good trailers must appear to be well-funded and well-produced. And if they are, they are a lot of fun to watch.