Step 3 Part 1 - Role Cards


Your functions are:                                                          

  • To investigate the subject of the film on the basis of the central enquiry question. 

  • To search for stories, main persons, archive material (photographs and films that can be used freely) and historical background articles.

  • To check whether the stories are really true. Collect the names and details of the main characters and make the first contact for an interview.


NB: in this project, the research is carried out by the entire group.

  • Those who choose the position of researcher are specifically responsible for checking the sources and data (finding out the truth) and for making agreements with the guests/main persons. 

  • During the recording, the researcher provides content support to the interviewer.

  • The researchers make a list of names and functions for the titles in the editing.

*Watch the research tutorial → with your group for more details and read through the steps for researching below

Steps for researching ▾

Steps for researching (role for the whole group)

Brainstorm and look for sources

  • First, brainstorm together on how you would like to approach this question so that you can specifically search for the resources you need. What do you want to investigate? Who would answer this question best and where would you find stories about this question?

  • Use different research methods and read different sources as recommended in the tutorial.

  • Write down the sources you use and the information they provide.

  • Make sure you check your sources. Ask yourself, are they reliable?

Mind map

  • Create a profile of the person you would like to interview.

    • What are you actually looking for? What kind of profile does this person have and from what perspective do you want to highlight the theme? From what perspective do you want to tell your story?

  • Compare your mind map with the sources and people you have found and make a choice.

Content summary and plan of action

  • Write a short summary of the research. Include checks and balances as explained in the tutorial.

  • Write a plan of action as indicated in the tutorial

  • Keep in close contact with the interviewer at this stage. He or she will formulate his or her questions based on your data.

Personal contact (do this together with the interviewer)

  • Get in contact with your main character(s).

  • In order to determine whether your main character is really the right person for your film, personal contact is very important. 

  • Set a date for the interview.

  • Check the specific names and titles of your main characters.


  • If you search for photos, make sure they are free of copyright restrictions as indicated in the tutorial.


  • Meet with your group to plan out the time you have to make the movie.

    • How much time do you need to spend on research? 

    • When will you conduct the interviews? 

    • How long do you want to take to edit?

  • Make appointments with your main characters and ask permission to film at certain locations.



Your functions are:                                              

  • To ask the guest or main character the interview questions. 

  • To  prepare the interview/questionnaire on the basis of the researcher's information.

  • In consultation with the group, to choose a form of interview that suits the type of documentary chosen. (see tutorial). 

  • To maintain close contact with the cameraman/woman and the editor.

  • To speak to the guest in advance and tell the camera and editor what the interview is about.


  • Making a questionnaire that fits in with the research.

  • Responsible for good contact with the guest.

  • Responsible for good cooperation with the cameraman.

  • After the editing, inform the guests about which parts of the interview are in the film.

*A good interviewer will watch the interviewing tutorial → and read the steps for interviewing below. He/she will also share main findings with the group.

Steps for interviewing

Steps for interviewing

Preparing the interview

Personal contact (do this together with the researcher)

  • Get in contact with your main character(s). In order to determine whether your main character is really the right person for your film, personal contact is very important.
  • Set a date for the interview.

Choose your way of interviewing

  • Choose the style of interviewing as pointed out in the tutorial: 

    • Are you going to be in it as our guide through the whole story or are you the invisible interviewer and will the story tell itself?

  • Write down your questions based on the research.

Planning the filming with the cameraman/woman

  • Where does the interview take place? Inform your cameraman/woman of the circumstances.

  • What do you need to see in order to tell your whole story? 

  • Plan the scenes you need to complete your interview with the cameraman/woman.



  • During the interview make sure to ask all the questions you need.

  • Check with your cameraman/woman if both sound and video are appropriate. (annex 4 shows the form you can use)

  • Ask for specific names and titles.

  • Be polite / be specific / be complete / be kind.

  • Get permission from your main character to show this interview on social media.

  • Get permission from parents through a quit claim ▾  if your main character is under 18.



Your functions are :                                             

  • To shoot all the footage for the film. Not only the interview, but also all the images needed to make a good film and build a logical story. 

  • To think about the locations for filming and the actions to be filmed.

  • to consult with the interviewer beforehand so that she/he can determine what and where to film on the basis of the content of the questions. 

  • To keep in close contact with the editor to ensure that there are enough images for editing with enough variation. 

  • To make sure that there is enough light to play with, check that all scenes are properly captured in image and sound.

  • If necessary, to ask a question again or redo a recording. 


  • Filming of all images for the film, both interview and environmental shots.

  • Practise filming according to the tutorial if you need it.

  • Provide the right phone with a charged battery and power bank for recording (possibly via your teacher)

  • Responsible for light when filming indoors.

  • Responsible for good sound.

  • Responsible for good cooperation with the interviewer.

  • Responsible for close cooperation with the editor.

* A good cameraman will watch the filming tutorial → and read the steps for filming. If time allows, also watch the editing tutorial →

Steps for filming

Steps for filming

Preparing your materials

  • Make sure you have a charged cell phone with a good camera/extra battery pack/sound.

  • If you are filming in a house or building look for lights if you need them (see tutorial).

Preparing the filming

  • Clarify your understanding: 
    • Who is the main character? 

    • What story are we going to tell and what do we need to see?

    • What actions by the main character will add to the story?

    • Where is the best place to tell this story? (her work, his house, their broken down flat , etc.)

    • Make a list of all the scenes you need.


  • Film horizontally!

  • Reference the technical aspects on the sheet: specifications for filming on mobile phone (annex 4)

  • Use some MS, wide and close up angles during the interview. (see tutorial)

  • Make extra shots of the interviewer listening for the editing.

  • Make extra shots of the main character listening.

  • Use extra tips from the tutorial in improving your filming.

Download your material

  • Bring your material directly to the editor and download together.

Specifications for filming on a mobile phone

VPRO In Europe Schools

Specifications for filming on a mobile phone


Please set your phone to record at 1080p HD resolution by following these instructions:

  • iPhone: Please set your iPhone to said resolution via Settings >Camera>Record Video. Pick 1080p HD at 30fps.

  • Android Samsung, Huawei, HTC, etc): This differs per phone, but these settings can mostly be found via the settings menu inside the camera app or via the general settings menu. In this menu locate the video size menu. Best setting for filming is 1080p HD and 25fps.

  • If this option is not available on your phone, please make sure it is not a number below 1080p and/or 25fps or above 50fps.


Try to create a stable environment by using a tripod or a chair to lean on.


If possible, use an additional microphone. If you do not have one, avoid filming too far away from your sound object or person.

Extra sound and synchronization:

You could also use an extra phone to record the sound but then you have to synchronize both phones using a clap:

  • Start the audio on one phone and the camera on the other. Now synchronize by clapping your hands slowly. Make sure you record and film the hands and sound.

  • Do not stop your phone after this point. If you stop, you will have to sync again.

  • When editing, you can synchronize the clap with the image of the clap and then the sound and image will run at the same speed.

And last but not least, watch the filming tutorial → before you start shooting.

Good luck !



You functions are:                                           

  • To use the editing of the film to create a complete story. This is where research, interviewing and filming come together. In consultation with the team, scenes or questions can be left out to make the film stronger. 

  • To be bound to the truth. You are not allowed to transform what a guest/main character has said into another story. 

  • To look for suitable music or sounds for the film and make titles if necessary. The researchers will provide these and are responsible for correct spelling.


  • Assembly of the complete film.

  • Practice with the assembly tool if necessary.

  • Getting the right laptop/computer for editing from your teacher.

  • Providing music and audio for the entire film.

  • Close consultation with the interviewer and cameraman/woman about choices to be made in the editing (what do you leave out, in what order do you tell your story).

* A good editor will watch the editing tutorial → and read the steps for editing. If time allows, also watch the filming tutorial →


Make sure archive materials like photos, filmed footage and music are royalty free. It is forbidden to use any copyrighted material without any permission of the copyright owner. Ask your teacher for more information and watch our comments on this in the tutorials research, editing and uploading.

Steps for editing

Steps for Editing


  • Get a computer or laptop.
  • Download an editing programme and test it out.

  • Look at the instructions.

  • Upload the film material together with the cameraman/woman using the following programmes;

You can edit with the following programs;


  • Go through all the material and choose the best parts (together with the interviewer/cameraman-woman).

First draft

  • Make a first draft of your editing and do not hesitate to switch scenes to see if it improves your story.

  • Adopt tips from the tutorial in your editing.

  • Discuss your options with the team.

  • Save!!!! Use your save button as much as you can or use an auto saver that will save your edit every 10 minutes. 

Final draft

  • Finalise your editing.
  • Choose music that is free of copyright restrictions as indicated in the tutorial. (links in tutorial)

  • Add sound effects.

  • Add titles.

Download as MP4

Download your film as an MP4 file and send it to your teacher via email or WeTransfer