|This guideline documents an English Wikipedia naming convention.|
Conventions: Each word in a film title takes an initial capital, except for articles ("a", "an", "the"), the word "to" as part of an infinitive, prepositions, or coordinating conjunctions that are four letters or shorter (e.g., "on", "from", "and", "with"), unless they begin or end a title or subtitle. For example: Angels and Virgins, End of the Spear, Failure to Launch, I Am a Fugitive from a Chain Gang. See Wikipedia:Naming conventions (capitalization). Film titles, like the titles of books and other works of art, are always italicized.
From other topics
If a film does not share its title with any other topic on Wikipedia, name the article after the film's title. If a film shares its title with one or more non-film topics on Wikipedia, compare all topics and determine whether one is the primary topic. (See below for films with the same title.) If the film is the primary topic, name its article after the film's title without any disambiguation. If the film is not the primary topic, name its article after the film's title with the disambiguation "(film)" added at the end. For example, "An American in Paris" refers to both the Gershwin musical piece and the musical film. The musical piece is the primary topic, so it is titled An American in Paris, whereas the film is disambiguated by the primary topic by being titled An American in Paris (film). Ensure that readers can access a film with a disambiguated article title by using hatnotes or disambiguation pages. Another example:
- Dune is a geological term for sand formations and the primary topic.
- Dune (novel) is a 1965 science fiction novel by Frank Herbert and disambiguated from the primary topic.
- Dune (1984 film) is a 1984 film based on the novel and disambiguated from the primary topic.
Between films of the same name
If a film shares its title with one or more other film topics on Wikipedia, compare all film and non-film topics and determine whether one is the primary topic. If one film is the primary topic, name its article after the film's title without any means of disambiguation. For the other films (or all the films, if none of them are the primary topic), add the year of its first verifiable release (including film festival screenings).
- Citizen Kane – Requires no disambiguation as the sole candidate for the title.
- The Sound of Music (film) – The stage musical is considered to be the primary topic so the film is disambiguated.
- Jaws (film) – Jaws is a disambiguation page because there is no primary topic.
- All Quiet on the Western Front (1930 film) and All Quiet on the Western Front (1979 film) – The novel is regarded as the primary topic so both films are disambiguated.
- Miracle on 34th Street (the 1947 film), Miracle on 34th Street (1973 film) and Miracle on 34th Street (1994 film) – The original film is regarded as the primary topic so the other two adaptations are disambiguated.
- Titanic (1943 film), Titanic (1953 film), and Titanic (1997 film) – None of the films are the primary topic so they are all disambiguated.
When more than one film needs to be disambiguated, partial disambiguation such as Titanic (film) should be made and redirected back to the main disambiguation page or an appropriate section of it. This aids navigation, and helps editors to avoid creating new articles under the ambiguous title by accident. While the general guideline at Wikipedia:Disambiguation allows for incomplete disambiguation, the film-naming conventions guideline prefers disambiguating all secondary-topic films from each other. Policy at WP:PRECISION permits such Wikipedia project-specific naming criteria with the following related examples:
- Leeds North West is precise enough to be unambiguous, but Wikipedia:Naming conventions (UK Parliament constituencies) specify the addition of the qualifier in Leeds North West (UK Parliament constituency) with a redirect from Leeds North West.
- M-185 is precise enough to be unambiguous, but Wikipedia:Naming conventions (U.S. state and territory highways) specify adding the qualifier M-185 (Michigan highway) with a redirect from M-185.
For multiple films of the same name that are produced in the same year, include additional information such as the country of origin (adjective), like Noise (2007 Australian film) and Noise (2007 American film); or contrasting descriptive adjectives, such as Heidi (2005 live-action film) and Heidi (2005 animated film) or Skin (2018 feature film) and Skin (2018 short film).
For upcoming films where the release date is currently unknown, use (upcoming film) if disambiguation is necessary, for example Wikipedia (upcoming film). Once a release date has been confirmed by a reliable source, the page can then be moved to the correct year disambiguation.
For articles on a series of films, the title of the article should be Series name (film series), such as The Chronicles of Narnia (film series); if the series has no official name, choose one commonly used by reliable sources, such as Bourne (film series). When trilogies are often referred to as such by reliable sources, their articles may be titled Series name trilogy (e.g., Three Colours trilogy), or Series name trilogy (film series) if further disambiguation is required.
When the content presented in a film or film series spans other media formats such as radio, TV, video game, or print, then an associated overview page (an article describing and summarizing the items of the franchise) should usually occupy the primary article title (eg. Star Trek, Harry Potter), but may be disambiguated as Series name (franchise) when required. Example: Alien (franchise).
Typically, the full name of the character, if known, is used for the title of the article except when an alias or other name is much more common. If disambiguation is needed, add the film/film series/franchise title in parentheses; eg. Character name (title). If the character's name is the same as the film title or if the character appears in many different film titles, use Character name (character).
As shown above, redirects can be created to avoid creation of duplicate articles and to aid with searches or internal linking.
Use the title more commonly recognized by English readers; normally this means the title under which it has been released in cinemas or on video in the English-speaking world. Normally, this will be an English language title that is recognized across the English-speaking world; however, sometimes different English-speaking countries use different titles, in which case use the most common title, and give the native and alternate English title(s) afterward. If the film has never been widely released in the English-speaking world, it is not assumed to have a commonly-recognized English name; in such cases, the native name is to be preferred over potentially variant translated titles used in English-language reliable sources.
Note: in the following paragraphs, the phrase 'the English-speaking world' refers to countries in which the majority of the population speaks English as their first language; it thus includes the UK, USA, Canada, Australia, Ireland and New Zealand, as well as several smaller countries. It does not include countries such as India in which English is a common second language, but in which films are rarely produced in English.
If the film was released under the same English title across the English-speaking world, use this as the title of the article, and refer to the film by that title throughout the article. However, the first time it is used, follow it immediately with the original title in brackets, bolded, and with a link to the appropriate native language article.
- The Motorcycle Diaries (Spanish: Diarios de motocicleta)
If the English title means something different from the native title, use the English title, but in the first or second sentences of the article, explain the different meaning of the original title, putting it in bold too.
- Betty Blue is a 1986 French film. Its original French title is 37°2 le matin, which means "37.2 °C in the Morning".
If the film was released in the English-speaking world under its native title, use that throughout the article, but include an English translation in brackets after the first use. Do not put the English title in bold, as this is not an 'official' title. If the native title contains characters not in the Latin alphabet, such as syllabaries or Chinese characters, treat the romanization as the common title and include the native script and any other transliterations.
If the film has been released under different titles within the English speaking world – if for example, some English-speaking countries prefer to use the native title, or if different translations are used in different countries – use the most common title throughout, and explain the other titles in the first or second sentence, putting each of them in bold.
- Shoot the Piano Player (French: Tirez sur le pianiste) is a 1960 French film directed by François Truffaut. It is released as Shoot the Pianist in the United Kingdom.
- Bande à part is a 1964 comedy-drama film directed by Jean-Luc Godard. It is released as Band of Outsiders in North America.
Titles of articles should be the most commonly used title for the following reasons:
- We want to maximize the likelihood of being listed in external search engines, thereby attracting more people to Wikipedia. Using "The Seventh Seal" rather than "Det sjunde inseglet" makes the page easier to find with a search engine, since search engines often give greater weight to the title than to the body of the page. Since "The Seventh Seal" is the most common form of the title, it will be searched on more often, and having that exact string in our page title will often mean our page shows up higher in other search engines.
- We want to maximize the incidence that people who make a link guessing the article title, guess correctly: people guessing a different title may think there is no article yet, which may cause duplication.
- Using the full native title requires people to know that title, and spell it correctly. This would potentially be more difficult in the case of foreign languages.
A "redirected from" announcement occurs at the top of the page when a user enters a foreign title and is redirected to the English translation. The reasoning for doing this would be to make the meaning of the title comprehensible by the majority under the currently viewed language, and the benefit being that if someone reads or hears about "Le Fabuleux Destin d'Amélie Poulain", and wonders what film might be meant by that, the "(Redirected from Le Fabuleux Destin d'Amélie Poulain)" at the top of the page describing the film in question puts the reader at ease that this was the intended film: the "redirect" message indicates that the system hasn't been playing tricks, and that this was the page to which you were supposed to be led.
Articles about filmmaking
Articles which relate to general concepts related to film technology, terminology, and industry should use (filmmaking) if disambiguation is necessary. Examples: Above the line (filmmaking), Option (filmmaking), Wrap (filmmaking)