Created By: Discar on September 23, 2012 Last Edited By: Discar on March 14, 2013

Cinematic Pan Out

Panning out the camera to give a better view of the area.

Name Space:
Main
Page Type:
Trope
Do We Have This One?

Sometimes, the writers want to make sure you know how pretty (or not so pretty) an area is. So, they pull the camera back to a view where the audience can see the full glory of the local area.

Usually, this only shows up when first entering an area, but not always.

Subtrope of Scenery Porn. Often overlaps with Location Subtitles.


Examples:

Film

  • There is one shot in Apollo13 that pulls back from the spacecraft to show the immense black of space.

Video Games

  • Happens several times in Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, such as when entering Ysa for the first time.
  • Metroid Prime games do pan-outs when you first enter an area, along with giving the area name.
  • Final Fantasy XII does pan outs and area names when you first enter a major area.
  • Xenoblade not only pans out when you first enter a new area, it also shows where there areas is on the Bionis or Mechonis.
  • Similar to the Metroid example, many of the The Legend of Zelda games since Ocarina of Time show a new area like this when you first enter it.

Western Animation

  • In the Simpsons episode "Trash of the Titans" Homer destroys the town with garbage and everyone packs up & moves five miles away. At the end of the episode we see a Crying Indian pick up a piece of trash and weep a Single Tear. His friend tells him, "Do yourself a favor; don't turn around." He turns around and we get a pan of the entire area filled with garbage, along with his offsceeen scream of horror.
Community Feedback Replies: 28
  • September 23, 2012
    DragonQuestZ
    • Metroid Prime games do pan-outs when you first enter an area, along with giving the area name.
    • Final Fantasy XII does pan outs and area names when you first enter a major area.
    • Xenoblade not only pans out when you first enter a new area, it also shows where there areas is on the Bionis or Mechonis.
  • September 23, 2012
    Discar
    Gonna need some more detail on those first two, Z. Those are pretty much Zero Context Examples.
  • September 23, 2012
    DragonQuestZ
    ^ Fixed.

  • September 23, 2012
    Tallens
    • Similar to the Metroid example, many of the Legend Of Zelda games since Ocarina Of Time show a new area like this when you first enter it.
    • There is one shot in Apollo13 that pulls back from the spacecraft to show the immense black of space.
    • The first shot of Contact which pulls away from Earth through the Solar System, through the Milky Way, and eventually thought the universe.
  • September 25, 2012
    ace1263
    I don't think this qualifies as a trope, or, if it does, that it should have examples, as that would include basically every movie and video game ever done. Pan-outs are much too common for to be a trope.
  • September 25, 2012
    DragonQuestZ
  • September 25, 2012
    ace1263
    ^ http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/NotATrope In here it directly states that something like this is not a trope. Panning out to reveal something is a necessity in film making, and is too vague to not cover literally all examples of zooming out, as zooming out per definition is made to look at a larger area. This is just not a worthy subject for a trope.
  • September 25, 2012
    DragonQuestZ
    ^ Showing the area is the purpose. It's right there at the front of the description. It's to say "Look at this cool level you'll be exploring".

    Don't tell us that isn't a worthy subject for a trope.
  • September 25, 2012
    Tallens
    Seems to me you've misread something in there if you think this is Not A Trope. Which specific guideline do you think this one violates?
  • September 26, 2012
    DragonQuestZ
    Also, since Scenery Porn includes this in examples and description (and this ykttw is listed as a Sub Trope in the OP), then this is already at least that trope. The only way to invalidate this would be to prove it's not distinct enough to split.
  • September 26, 2012
    acrobox
    This isn't a 'trope' as much as it is storytelling protocol. The actual term for it in the film industry is Establishing Shot. Notice how in movies and tv shows whenvever there's a scene transition you will see the town before zooming in to the characters in the street, or see the house from the outside before going to the characters inside, or you'll see the castle before going to the king on his throne etc.

    In video games they typically only do the Establishing Shot the first time you enter an area because it would slow down the flow of gameplay if you had to see it every time. This doesnt stop them from doing establishing shots in cutscenes however, because you still need to orient the audience and tell them where you are.
  • September 26, 2012
    acrobox
    oh wow it turned into a blue link, i guess Yes We Do Have This One

    there is a shortage of videogame examples on the page tho, so you can go ahead and add your examples there
  • September 26, 2012
    DragonQuestZ
    ^ The difference is an establishing shot is for when there is almost no context for time and place. Most games that do this have already given context that this is a new area. The pan-out is more of a sneak preview of the new area, not establishing that you are in one.
  • September 26, 2012
    acrobox
    serves the same purpose. tells you where you are in space.
  • September 26, 2012
    DragonQuestZ
    ^ Players can find that out by playing the level. The point of this trope is a sneak preview of the level.
  • September 26, 2012
    acrobox
    a sneak preview shows you where you are in space. It establishes where you are and where you might go and hence is an establishing shot.
  • September 26, 2012
    DragonQuestZ
    ^ No, a sneak preview shows you where you will be. It's a future tense word.
  • September 26, 2012
    acrobox
    does anyone else want to weigh in?
  • October 4, 2012
    norsicnumber2nd
    OKAY! This trope is where, after looking at your beautiful new place to explore from an in-world map, a birds-eye map, your character's eyes or your own eyes, the camera says "here, look some more".

    Half the time when you reach a new level you decide to save and quit. The point here is to have you see the pretty place before you get to see the pretty place. Look like fun? You bet! So you play through the level.
  • October 4, 2012
    DvanderHoof
    Just because we're aiming this at a real inside baseball crowd, how about using the more precise term, 'zoom' or 'pull' out? Panning, to native speakers of cinema, is looking from side to side with the camera. Zoom is working the zoom lens in one direction or another. Pulling could be zooming out or it could be moving the camera itself further away, which shows more. I'm a director, though I haven't played one on tv. And, by the way, you can't pan up and down, either. That's tilting. HTH.
  • October 4, 2012
    acrobox
    a fellow industry worker ^ nice
  • October 5, 2012
    norsicnumber2nd
    Yay, title corrections!

    Though, speaking videogames, if it's a sidescroller (like Mario or something), a pan would actually be this reveal. Moving to the side to see the rest of the panorama. This isn't film, it's gaming. Whole other ball game, my friends.
  • October 25, 2012
    makesadifference
    OP?
  • December 17, 2012
    randomsurfer
    In the Simpsons episode "Trash of the Titans" Homer destroys the town with garbage and everyone packs up & moves five miles away. At the end of the episode we see a Crying Indian pick up a piece of trash and weep a Single Tear. His friend tells him, "Do yourself a favor; don't turn around." He turns around and we get a pan of the entire aree filled with garbage, along with his offsceeen scream of horror.
  • January 5, 2013
    lakingsif
    Apparently this was edited yesterday... but there's only one example and a two-line description?

    Also, this quite often happens when a game is showing you your objective point, like in Mario 3D - but that zooms in because it's a 3D setting and not just a side-scroller like the original.
  • January 6, 2013
    Discar
    I added the examples, but in doing so I remembered Epic Tracking Shot. I'm not sure if this is distinct enough to be its own trope.
  • January 9, 2013
    MaxWest
    Filmation was famous for doing this with their cartoons like Fat Albert And The Cosby Kids and He Man And The Masters Of The Universe. The former frequently opened up with a pan of the surrounding neighborhood and junkyard before cutting to the action or Bill Cosby.
  • February 21, 2013
    randomsurfer
    Made a minor edit to OP correcting a typo in the Simpsons example I submitted (aree > area).
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