The crucial step

Blocking is the arrangements made for composing a scene, especially the placement and movements of actors.

Each shot is divided into four parts:

  1. Blocking: The director determines where the actors will be on the set and the first camera position.
  2. Lighting: The director of photography lights the set and positions the camera for the first shot.
  3. Rehearsal: The director and cinematographer rehearse the first setup with the actors and crew.
  4. Shooting: The first scene is shot, then the process is repeated.

Many directors consider blocking to be the most important part of the process. This clip from Citizen Kane demonstrates the complicated movements actors must perform while making it all look natural.