A recurring shot in the works of a film director. Can form part of a SignatureStyle. The literary/unintentional equivalent of this is an AuthorCatchphrase, and the actor equivalent of this is just a normal CatchPhrase ([[Creator/ArnoldSchwarzenegger "I'll be back"]]).

May be the result of conscious or subconscious AuthorAppeal.


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 CreatorThumbprint), but his usage of low angled telephoto shots of said helicopters silhouetted over the sunset would be a SignatureShot. 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 Website/IMDb.

Not to be confused with a {{Pinball}} designer's [[SignatureStyle preferred table layout.]]

Does not include overarching SignatureStyle elements of a body of work, or ''explicit'' IconicLogo trademarks, such as Creator/AlfredHitchcock's silhouette or Walt Disney's signature.
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!! Examples:

* Creator/JamesCameron: Shots that start at the feet.
* Creator/QuentinTarantino: [[TrunkShot Shots from the POV of a car trunk]].
** He's also [[AuthorAppeal partial to feet]].
* Creator/JohnWoo: pulled back tight angle shots of DisturbedDoves are a frequent HarbingerOfAsskicking and accompaniment to {{Hit Stop}}s in his works. Action scenes frequently involve highly mobile cameras and various forms of AdrenalineTime and BulletTime, becoming more extreme as a film's budget rises. He's also known for a particular form of close-up MexicanStandoff featuring lots of {{WhipPan}}s and {{ReactionShot}}s over GunpointBanter.
* Creator/TimBurton: TunnelVision.
* Creator/SamRaimi: WhipPan (along with ShakyPOVCam).
** He also does that thing where he rapidly zooms in on something in the scene, then rapidly zooms in on something a different detail in the scene, and so on, always using a sound effect with the zoom.
* Creator/StanleyKubrick: the KubrickStare.
* Creator/PaulThomasAnderson has used IrisShot in every film he's ever made.
* Creator/ClaudeChabrol uses shots of where the camera climbs a spiral staircase in four different films.
* Creator/YasujiroOzu really liked to shoot conversations by having the person speaking directly face the camera, rather than put two people in the same shot, or shoot over the shoulder of the person who's listening.
* Creator/OrsonWelles famously used deep-focus shots typically featuring three planes- front, middle, and back, all simultaneously in focus, but clearly separate.
* Creator/AlfredHitchcock used a technique called "cross-tracking", a variation of shot/reverse-shot, in which a character, walking towards a threatening object is intercut with that object.
* Creator/IngmarBergman is known for his intense close-ups of faces in despair.
* Creator/RainierWenerFassbinder is known for still-shots framing characters in doorways.
* Creator/RobertZemeckis often uses [[ObjectTrackingShot ObjectTrackingShots]].
* Creator/SergioLeone loves long close-ups of faces and EyedScreen.
* Doctor Who director Creator/GraemeHarper puts a shot of a character seen through a lens in every episode he directs.
* Creator/StevenSpielberg does at least one reflection shot per film. Also, the "Spielberg Face" is his signature shot where we see a character's face as they look in awe toward some wonder or during some monumental event.
* Creator/BusbyBerkley is very famous for his overhead shots. Even today putting overhead shots into your film is considered an homage to Berkley.
* Creator/WesAnderson always has a Walking and Talking scene where the camera spins around the protagonist as he does a surpsing amount of work.
* Creator/LucioFulci often uses a extreme close up of characters eyes, either with or without a zoom. It is present in almost all of his films several times.
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