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Axis of Action

Page history last edited by Air Dupaix 11 years, 11 months ago



"Axis of Action," also commonly referred to as the "180° line," is an imaginary line which defines the spatial relations of all the elements of a scene, correlating them to the right or left. The camera is not supposed to cross the axis at a cut, as that would reverse those specific spatial relations.


If the camera passes over the imaginary axis connecting the two subjects, it is referred to as "crossing the line." The new shot, from the opposite perspective, is known as a "reverse angle."


In production, the applied 180° rule is a vital element for a specific style of film editing referred to as "continuity editing" . However, this rule is sometimes ignored. Sometimes filmmakers purposely break the line of action, which achieves an effect of disorientation. Filmmakers who understand this technique state that the fictional axis created by this rule can be used to propose the emotional strength of a particular scene. In theory: the level of emotional engagement achieved from an audience is dependent on how close the camera is to the axis.


Here is a great example of Axis of Action:



A great example of crossing the line juxtaposed with axis of action can be found in the following scene:


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Works Cited





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