I’m sitting taking a break from editing my latest wedding film and I thought it would be a great opportunity to answer a question I’m sure most newlyweds have. How long will my wedding video take to edit?
After your wedding day you should expect to receive your finished wedding video in around 8 – 12 weeks. A wedding video normally takes around 2 weeks in total to edit as it has to go through a number of different processes but on top of that the reason why it can take up to three months to get your wedding video back is because your wedding videographer will probably have a small backlog to catch up on. I will explain this more below.
How Does a Wedding Video Edit Work?
1. Backing Up Footage
Once all the fun of your wedding day the process of editing your wedding film begins. The first step in editing a wedding film is to ensure all those important files are backed up. I like to do this the very same night as the wedding, it helps me sleep knowing your wedding memories are all backed up.
A Wedding video back up can take around 2 hours to ensure files are backed up in more than one place including one offsite location.
2. The Assembly Edit
The actual wedding video edit normally starts with the sorting and syncing of footage. All the footage is loaded into the editing program and sorted and labeled into different parts of the day. At this point if your ceremony has been filmed with more than one camera the footage of these parts of the day will be matched together and linked with the sound so it’s easier to cut between cameras in the edit.
This part of the process is also a good point for the editor to sort out the good footage from the bad. As with any creative process some shots will work and some won’t. The shot may have been out of focus or the record button may have been pressed by mistake and you have 2 mins of filming the floor. Cutting these types of shots out of the film straight away will help speed the editing process up later.
3. The Ceremony & Speeches Edit
This is generally the simplest process of editing a wedding film. Once all the footage has been synced together with the sound it’s a pretty easy process of cutting between different cameras through the ceremony and speeches. Finding the best angles to suit what’s happening on screen.
In general the Speeches and ceremony edit should take about a full day each to be perfected.
4. The Rough Cut
A Rough cut is where the wedding video really starts to take shape. All of the best shots are loaded into the edit timeline along with music, audio clips and often key parts of the wedding ceremony and speeches. The editor then spends a lot of time crafting your wedding film to tell the story of your day.
This rough cut can take a while, maybe a full week sometimes to enable the edit to be changed to tell your story in the best way.
5. The Final Cut
Once the rough cut is complete we begin work on the final cut, this is a simpler process and involves tidying up the clips a little and refining the edit. Things like sound levels and image cropping and stabilization are completed at this stage of the wedding video edit. Once this is complete we then move to the final stage of the edit. Colour grading.
6. Colour Grading and Export
The final stage of the wedding video editing process. The film is almost complete and now it just needs to be coloured and exported.
The colour grading process varies for different videographers. Some wedding videographers will apply a lot of colour at this stage and make the film look a bit different to how it looked on the wedding day. Others will add a light colour grade to make it look more natural and more like it was on the day, this is where part of the wedding videographers style comes from, you will normally see a similar style of colour grade in most of their wedding videos.
After the colour grading is complete the films just need to be rendered and exported, this is where the computer does it’s magic and often takes hours compressing all of the footage into a file format that will play on your TV or computer.
Why does my wedding videographer have a backlog?
As you’ve read above the whole process of editing a Wedding Video actually takes around 2 weeks in total but why does it take longer to receive your wedding video? Well this is because your wedding videographer will probably have a backlog of films to edit.
As you probably know most weddings take place during the summer months and wedding videographers can sometimes film 2 or 3 weddings per week during this high season. The higher amount of weddings means that the 2 weeks of editing for each wedding will start to back up, this is totally normal and to be expected in the summer season. This is why most wedding videographers will give you an estimated time of up to 3 months to complete your wedding video.
If you get married in the quieter months then you can probably expect to get your wedding films edited in a shorter time.
What about Same day wedding video edits?
Same day and express edits differ from the normal wedding video edits. These normally come at a premium price and allow you to see your film much quicker. Same day edits often require an extra editor to be at your wedding venue on your wedding day and they will spend all day crafting you a short highlight film to show to your guests in the evening.
Express edits usually will mean that your film will take priority over others for some reason and will again usually demand a higher price tag.
When should I contact the wedding video editor about my film?
Most wedding videographers will keep you up to date on the progress of your wedding film edit but if you’ve not heard anything after 8 weeks it may be worth popping them an email to see how they are getting on with your wedding video, try to be patient though as a wedding videographer always wants to spend a lot of time crafting the perfect story of your wedding day.
I hope this blog has provided you some good information about how long your wedding video will take to come. If you’re thinking of wedding videography for your wedding then please take a look at my main wedding video page to find out how to document your wedding day!
If you’re a wedding videographer then let me know what your standard delivery time is.
Thanks for reading,