Signature Shot

A recurring shot in the works of a film director. Can form part of a Signature Style. The literary/unintentional equivalent of this is an Author Catchphrase, and the actor equivalent of this is just a normal Catch Phrase ("I'll be back").

May be the result of conscious or subconscious Author Appeal.

An important distinction to make in this trope is the difference between mise-en-scene and cinematography. Mise-en-scene is WHAT is shown on screen, while cinematography is HOW it's shown on screen. The two frequently combine to make a director's signature shot. So Michael Bay's love for helicopters at sunset is more "signature mise-en-scene" (see Creator Thumbprint), but his usage of low angled telephoto shots of said helicopters silhouetted over the sunset would be a Signature Shot. Others walk the line- Tarantino's close-ups on feet are sort of signature mise-en-scene (feet) and sort of signature cinematography (the close-up on the feet as anchor point for a larger scene). We're looking for that cinematography- that particular use of the camera, its focus and placement.

Many of these can be found in trivia sections on IMDb.

Not to be confused with a Pinball designer's preferred table layout.

Does not include overarching Signature Style elements of a body of work, or explicit Iconic Logo trademarks, such as Alfred Hitchcock's silhouette or Walt Disney's signature.