Are you looking for a Wedding Video or Film?

Manchester wedding videographer

What is the Difference between a Wedding Video and a Film?


If you have set the date and started looking for suppliers for your wedding then you might be thinking about capturing your wedding day forever, by hiring a videographer? If that is the case, well done on making what is probably one of the most important decision about your wedding that you could make!  However, how will you choose to remember it? Let’s face it the Wedding day may take years and months in the planning but it goes by oh so quick!  How will you choose to remember and capture all those emotions, the people that come together on what is,  for most of us, one of the most important days in your life? Usually the photographer is one of the first things you will no doubt think about when it comes to thinking about capturing your day, but the videographer is equally as important because they will capture so much more than photo’s alone can capture.


So you have decided to have a Videographer…

Ok, so you have decided that you want to hire a professsional to capture your wedding and you have started looking on the internet at different suppliers offering different things, and you may be thinking the whole process is a little confusing? There are different styles of wedding videos, different lengths of videos, different prices that can vary considerably. How do you choose? How do you find the right one?


Decide what you want, a video or a film

Perhaps the first things you need to decided is whether you would be happy with a wedding video or whether you want a wedding Film?  Aren’t they the same thing I hear you ask?  No, not necessarily, let me explain….


Wedding Video vs Wedding Film

When I got married, many years ago now, we hired a Wedding Videographer and we got a wedding video- definitely not a wedding film!  We received a 2 hour long VHS tape that was composed of long takes of footage of the build up to the ceremony, then the whole ceremony and lots of people coming and going oh yeh people eating cake ;)  The finished video had more of a Local News report type of a look and feel to it and was minimally edited with very little post-production other than some music overlay that was very 1990’s :)

The video was epic in length and we watched it, maybe a handful of times? Then it was put in storage never to be seen again!  Thankfully things have changed since the 1990’s and technology has come on leaps and bounds!  Videographers can now access better cameras, better editing software and thus produce better looking films. But not all do! All films are not equal; let me explain.  Some videographers are happy to offer wedding videos that are minimally post-processed and not particularly filmed in an artistic style. Their particular niche is aimed at those on a tight budget or who just want ‘some’ video content of their wedding day and that’s great, there is definitely a market for that. In fact,  you could technically film a wedding on an iPhone these days but how many times would you watch it?

Then there are those who prefer to offer Wedding ‘Films’ rather than wedding videos. They aim to produce something very different, something that is ‘Cinematic’ or in other words ‘Movie Like’.  Giving the couple a film that was shot and edited creatively just like a movie. So what makes a Wedding Video a Wedding ‘Film’?  here are three things that a Cinematic Style Wedding Film Maker will look to include:


  • The ‘Film Look’– this is achieved by careful shot composition and framing, use of natural light and colour grading to give the finished film that movie like ‘film look.’ They may also use a film stock plugin to give the video a less digital type of a look. This alone takes considerable time in the editing process individually adjusting hundreds of clips!
  • Story– a really great movie has a great story right? A Cinematic Wedding Film Maker will be thinking about how he can tell your story creatively. This is achieved in a number of ways;  Shot choice and editing but also through audio as a narrative, perhaps captured from your Ceremony, speeches or readings. Which means, a Cinematic Style Wedding Film maker will have to utilise professional high end audio recording equipment and mix that with the video footage- again something that can be very time consuming in the post-production process.
  • Music-this is the other essential part of the puzzle. Just think about your favourite films, where would they be without that music score? How would those films get the emotional reactions from the viewers without that music?  In fact,  music is SO important to a great Movie that is as every bit as important as the visuals. A talented Wedding Film maker will spend many hours (I do) finding the right piece of music to fit a couple and their film to enhance the visuals and compliment the story in the couples wedding film.

Only after all the above are utilised will the finished product be more movie like than video like and yes it has taken a lot longer and more effort to produce, hence it will cost more than a cheap wedding video. A Cinematic Wedding Film should be something a couple and their family and friends will want to watch over and over again.

So…. the question I guess is, how important is that to you?  How do you want to remember your wedding day?  Yes, a wedding Film maker may charge more than someone that offers a basic wedding video, minimally post-processed, and yes you will no doubt save some money by hiring a cheap videographer, but what will you spend the money you save on? The chocolate Fountain???


I honestly think a couple when choosing a Wedding Videographer should view it as an investment– in other words something that is and will remain of great value for many years to come.



Julian Voigt