We now get to the topic of film loops. Film loops are a very useful animated sequence that you can use much like a single cast member. If you're familiar with movie clips in Flash, they're similar to that. For example, you can create an animation of a ball as I have here that's rotating 360 degrees and that will consist of a film loop and then you can animate the path of the ball. Also, another example would be to create an animation of an insect flying across the Stage and then create a film loop of the sequence of cast members that shows the bee, for example, flapping it's wings. Instead of using the frame-by-frame technique, you would create a Sprite containing only the film loop and then animate it across as many frames as you need. When you run back the animation here, my ball will be rolling at the same time that it's moving across the Stage. So let me go ahead and play this back and you can see this is simply a ball that's spinning in 360 degrees. However, I can now move the ball here. At the end, let's go ahead and insert a keyframe here. Let's move the position of the ball, click on that keyframe and let's move the ball off the Stage and let's take the first keyframe, which is represented by that green circle, off the Stage in that direction and then you can see that in addition to spinning, the ball is moving across the Stage like so and I can speed this up, shortening the Sprite span. That's a pretty long span there. Let's shorten this up, make this a hundred frames or less and now my ball is moving across the Stage a little bit better. Still a little bit jerky and slow. So another way to change the frame duration there is to click on the Sprite span and then notice I have a start frame and end frame. Let's change that to 70. So now the span is only 70 frames and let's rewind and play this back. See, the ball moves faster across the Stage. Let me demonstrate in this movie how to set up and use these film loops and then in the next movie review how to set some of the film loop properties. So let's start by taking the ball here, that constitutes the base image of the film loop. Let's move all the way out here to the end of the Score. The way this works is that you set up these film loops at a location in the Score. Then you leave it there. If you delete it from the Score, you'll actually delete it permanently as well as from the Cast Window. So I have a Sprite span here, way out at frame 450 where it's not going to bother anybody. And let's insert a keyframe at the end of that Sprite span. Now, let's bring up my Properties Inspector here, click on the Sprite span and now more specifically I want to click on the end keyframe there, the second keyframe and there's a rotation setting there because I want this to be a seamless 360 degree rotation. I'm going to type 360 right there and that will spin this thing at 360 degrees. You won't notice this moving, but there you can see that I have a very nice, smooth, 360 degree rotation. I chose this soccer ball so you can really so it easily as it's rotating. Now, the key is once you've set up that animation and, by the way, this animation can involve as many Sprites and as many channels as I want. I'm going to select the entire span and drag and drop it onto the next available cast position. Let's give this a name. Soccer ball roll like so. Click OK. Something nice and descriptive for that name. Now I'm going to move back to the beginning of my time line. I'm going to leave that animated sequence out there and not touch it. So you can also place it in a lower channel if you want, Sprite channel so that you don't disturb it. Now I'm going to move my playback head to frame one and simply drag my soccer ball film loop onto the Stage and now I'm going to stretch this out several hundred frames or so, rewind the movie, let's go ahead and close my cast window and close my Properties Inspector, rewind the movie and play it. And you can see that I have a nice spinning ball there, or rolling ball I should say. Then it gets to the end and stops. But the advantage of creating these film loops is to easily create compound animations. So what I want to do now is rewind and now let's add some keyframes here to the middle of this Sprite span and take this keyframe now and move it up like so and now let's add a few more keyframes. You can see this, this ball is already starting to move. Let's insert another key frame here and now let's drag this keyframe over like that and you'll see that I have now a path. Let's continue adding keyframes here. This is why I added so many frames to begin with and let's insert another one here. So now my ball is going to move along that path, spinning all the while. So you can simulate a soccer game here, someone kicking the ball and it's careening around, not in a straight line. But notice the ball will continue to spin. Now, a film loop behaves just like any other cast member in your Cast Window, with a few exceptions. And I'll review those exceptions and talk more about how to set film loop properties in the next movie.
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