Titles are one of those areas in editing that at times can seem like an afterthought. With all the time and budget constraints in today’s demanding editing schedules, titling often takes a back seat. But when creative editors have the time and budget to devote to it, a strong opening title sequence has the potential to be a story within a story, setting the tone and pace for the film or production to follow. One only need watch the splendid intro of “Catch Me If You Can” to be reminded of this. Read on for some practical examples of innovative title sequences, and a few resources to draw inspiration from in your own editing projects.
One site devoted to highlighting these titling gems is artofthetitle.com. They regularly post film title intro examples along with trivia and commentary. Some of my favorites there include the aforementioned “Catch Me If You Can“, “Thank You For Smoking“, and “Stranger Than Fiction“. There’s even a few of the classics in there, like the intro to 1968’s “Bullitt.” Some haven’t aged as well however, like the titles for “Panic Room“ which, while probably innovative at the time, now just feel overly gratuitous.
Another great site for exploring creative title sequences is movie-titles.tv. They spare the commentary and analysis, and go straight to the title sequences. Finally, PVC’s own Trish and Chris Meyer recently posted a few links to font resources. So the next time you are at a creative titling impasse in the edit suite, check out these links for a fresh injection of ideas and inspiration.