Wedding Films 101 // Chapter 1 – Is a wedding film part of your wedding plan? Here is why it should be.

Let’s face it. Your wedding day is filled with so many facets – locations, flowers, photographers, dresses, favors, centerpieces – the list could literally go on and on.  When you get down to brass tacks, all you really need is your significant other and someone that can officiate your ceremony, legally making you husband and wife.  Okay, maybe throw some rings into that equation to show the rest of the world that you are no longer on the market and we can easily wrap up the basic necessities.  The rest of the details?  Honestly, those can all be described as the frosting on top of your wedding cake.

When considering your budget for all of that frosting, think about what is most important to you.  For some, 85  percent of the focus is the wedding gown.  For others, without question, it’s the venue where the most important day of their life will take place.  For another percent of newly engaged couples, the meal & drinks that their guests will enjoy at their reception tops the “must have” piece of that seemingly never ending wedding day budget pie. After sharing hundreds of wedding days with lots of special couples, and getting to know them, it always comes out that one thing that a lot of them never considered in the initial stages of planning is their wedding film.  Why?

The number one obstacle that wedding cinematographers battle is the “uncle with a video camera” stigma.  Thirty years ago, a great majority of wedding films were just that.  Your uncle or friend or sister in law’s neighbor had a video camera and wasn’t opposed to standing next to a tripod during your ceremony  and hitting a button.  Maybe then he or she would catch a few glimpses of your first dance or your cake cutting in exchange for a free meal and a couple hundred bucks.  While that may be exactly what some people had in mind (and may still have in mind) for our couples, that simply isn’t enough.  If you are reading this blog post, chances are that you have already viewed at least one of our wedding films, so I hope you can agree that our work is on a completely different level than the dreaded uncle scenario.  That being said, why is it that most couples on the front end don’t even have “wedding film” penciled into their budget and yet unfortunately on the back end, have a huge regret to go along with that?

Of course we would love for everyone who walks down the aisle to fully appreciate the impact that a wedding film can have in the big picture.  Take for instance, a wonderful couple that we worked with a few of years back. We were hired to capture their wedding months prior to their big day.  We arrived that day, blended into the background, watched as their day unfolded and then hand crafted their wedding film as we do for all of our clients.  What I remember specifically from that day is the toast that the father of the bride gave prior to dinner.  It was one of the most emotional and heartfelt speeches that you could imagine.  The room literally fell silent as he spoke.  We made that toast one of the focal points of their film, which later came to be more important that I could have ever imagined.  Sadly, three months after their wedding, this bride’s father passed away.   Watching her wedding film from that day has been so important to this family, and has helped them relive some moments that would have otherwise been forgotten.

A nationwide study from last year says that only 13% of couples who got married last year hired a professional to document their day via video.  Of the 87% that didn’t take the wedding film plunge, a staggering 90% had regrets in making that decision AFTERWARDS.  In this same study, 89% of couples hired a photographer and over half of them cited that photos were one of the top two priorities when planning their wedding details.  I get it.  Photos are a must have and are an integral part of your special day.  Case closed.  I understand that one hundred percent.  But why is it though that the only memories that you can put into a frame or scrapbook are on the radar of more than 85% of these couples?

What can film offer you that photos can’t?  In essence, a time machine that can almost take you back to the special moments that took place on first day of the rest of your lives.   We are there, behind the scenes, when you’re getting ready that morning.  We watch the opening of the bridal gifts and capture the emotion when reading a note from your soon to be spouse.  We are there when your mom tears up as your wedding dress is buttoned by your maid of honor and we watch your expression as you hear your best friends and siblings toast to you with some amazing (and hopefully not too embarrassing) stories about your lives.  With a wedding film, you will be able to watch your grandparents dance the night away, see your flower girl apprehensively walk down the aisle and most importantly, hear those important vows that you have written for each other.

We urge you to look at your wedding film as an investment, not a cost.  An investment that not only you and your parents will enjoy, but one that will last for generations to come.  Your children and grandchildren will be able to sit down and watch as an integral day in their lives unfolds, which is priceless.

If you decide to move forward in getting a wedding film, let me be clear about one thing – not all wedding cinematographers are created equal.  Now don’t get us wrong, we aren’t saying that we are better than everyone else and all of that.  What we ARE saying is that we pride ourselves on being on top of trends and style.  We are constantly reinvesting in our business with improved tools, techniques & equipment, which allows our work to speak for itself.  We have had the honor of winning both local and international awards which represents our hard work, dedication and passion in telling your story.   This is what we do and for the last eight years, we have been lucky enough to make it our profession.  We love the art of storytelling and filmmaking and we put that energy into every wedding that we capture, leaving each of our couples with memories to share for years to come.

Next week we will be sharing testimonials from couples on both sides of the fence.   You’ll hear from those that can’t say enough about how investing in MI Studios was the best decision that they made in regards to their wedding.  You’ll also, interestingly enough, hear from couples that have written to us with regret of not having hired us to document their day.  Stay tuned…


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