Lights, camera, ACTION!
Just what the heck is a clapperboard anyways? It started out as a low tech method for synchronizing picture and sounds while filming movies and TV series. High tech digital models are the norm these days.
The original version was a slate chalkboard with a hinged piece of wood at the top. The details of the movie are written on the chalkboard and then the wood hinge is clapped down on top of the board at the beginning of each scene being filmed. Typical details written on the clapperboard include the name of the production, date, director and director of photography. The most important information recorded on the clapper includes the scene details; scene number, camera angle and take number.
When editing the film at a later date, the audio and video tracks can be synchronized according to the information recorded at the beginning of the scene when the clapper was in use. The clap sound is matched up with the clapperboard image to create a perfectly synchronized movie or television show.
Modern-day versions of the board are made out of white or transparent acrylic. Grease pencils, or wax writing tools, are used to write on the acrylic versions of the clapperboard. Technology aficionados can purchase digital movie slates for their smart phones and tablet computing devices.
Watch science and technology topics on the Today in America TV show. Visit todayinamerica.com for details on upcoming episodes of Today in America with Terry Bradshaw.