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What is video roll?

A roll and B roll is one of the basic video terms. Used during the old days of linear film editing. Where the editors used two rolls of similar images, the actual ‘A’ roll and the ‘B’ roll to create transitions between the shots. After the advent of non-linear editing tools, there is no requirement of two separate rolls. The terms are still used now but in a different context. Now, these terms are used in the journalistic filmmaking like documentaries and news stories.

What is A-roll?

A-roll ‘narrates’ the story such as an interview or a news segment. A primary piece of audio and video usually consists of one or more people discussing a topic or a narrative. Mostly used in documentaries, news broadcasting, reality shows, and talk shows. The audio from roll A usually acts as the voiceover for the B roll footage.

What is B-roll?

B-roll is supplemental footage used for visual support for the A-roll. This shows the story if A roll talks about the residencies, then B roll will show the house. It is just used to complement or confirm whatever is shown in the A-roll. Used to break up the monotony of a common A roll interview shot, making the whole thing more interesting. Also used as a Cutaway, used to remove parts of A roll undetected. These are used when there is a lot of stammering and stuttering in the video. This helps to show the story in a more visually engaging way.