How to Fake a Dolly Zoom (in Post)

by Aviv Vana

I have always wanted to do a dolly zoom, but it always seemed out of my reach. I needed to learn the technique, get the right equipment, and figure out how to really nail it. So now I’m like a kid in a candy store since I learned that I can finally do one using post trickery! And it looks, to my eye, just as good!  The Dolly Zoom is a classic Hollywood shot technique that has been employed in countless films since the late 50s. Usually, one would need a zoom lens to achieve this effect. However, by following this tutorial you will be able to replicate the effect with just a prime lens and slider.  Take a look at this tutorial by Lewis McGregor who shows you how to create a dolly zoom effect in Adobe After Effects, no zoom lens required!

Even if you’ve never heard of a dolly zoom before, chances are you’ve seen them: Hitchcock’s extending staircase shot in “Vertigo”…

…or Brody’s moment of realization in Spielberg’s “Jaws” are two of the most recognizable examples of the technique.


How to shoot a dolly zoom

It’s a pretty slick camera move you can pull off by moving your camera forward on a dolly while simultaneously zooming out with your lens, or vice versa. [Read More]



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