Setting the scene
Before we do anything, we need to set our scene dimensions. If you are producing something with the intention of exporting it to video select the ‘High Definition 1920×1080’ pre-set in the scene inspector. Whilst you’re there, change the scene background to black.
To create a truly authentic “Star Wars” feel, we need to create our introductory sentence. Create a new text element, add your text and centre it in the scene. For mine I have used Helvetica with a size of 86px and given it a turquoise colour.
We now need to animate the text’s opacity from 0 to 100% over a couple of seconds and then, after 3 seconds or so, animate the opacity back to 0%.
Now add a Timeline Action to jump to the next scene with a 0.2 second crossfade.
Add a new scene. If you are starting the crawl with a main title logo, add it now and centre it large within the scene. A couple of seconds into the scene the logo needs to start to drift into the distance. Over a period of around 12 seconds, animate the logo’s scale from 100% to 10%. For the last 2 seconds of the animation, also reduce the opacity to 0%. I created my logo using the Distant Galaxy font (available here).
Now create a new text element and add your crawl text. I’ve styled mine with Gill Sans, bold, 48px. I’ve also made the text element 800px wide. Centre the text element and position it so the top of the element touches the top of the scene. With the text element selected add it to a ‘Group’ (Arrange > Group). Now resize the Group (not the text element) so that its height is equal to the height of the scene.
Now reposition the text element within the group to sit just outside of the bottom of the Group. Now animate the text elements position so that it scrolls up the scene until it has all passed the top of the group. The length of this animation will depend on the length of your text and the speed you want it to move. Set the animation timing function to ‘linear’. For the last few seconds of the crawl, animate the text elements opacity to 0%.
Now to add the 3D effect. With the Group selected, alter its ‘X’ rotation to around 60%. Now, when your text animates, it appears to travel into the distance.
Finally, we need to add a star field background. To add an extra level of authenticity, make your star field 3 times deeper than it needs to be and animate it so that it slowly scrolls up (or down) once the crawl has disappeared. This can act as a nice transition into whatever you want to display after the text crawl.
To add an even greater level of polish, try experimenting with layering up your star field and tweaking the opacity and filter effects to create a parallax effect. You can download and use my star field here.
You can view the exported project on Youtube here.