iClone has a LightStage.iProject file you should download as this is a very good example of simplified staging.
Add a background, some foreground elements and you are good to go?
Simplier than it sounds especially when you are conceptualizing a movie, scene to scene.
Once you have built that great huge 3D scene, you will need to strategically think about what elements can become part of the background, for that particular camera angle, without looking to cheesy. Of course, save the file out under a different name as you start eliminating elements. This way you can always go back to the original 3D scene and try again.
The picture below is a scene where the house and environment use to be 3D. Now the only 3D elements are the folks in the car, the foreground bush and tree.
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