I gave up on having an animated title screen, so I downloaded a skip title plugin, then put the movie on parallel play, then made a conditional branch and set it to "press shift" to return to title screen so the video would play before the title screen, (the shift to skip the video) but the shift doesn't work until after the videos already over!!!
I just successfully tested having events check if specific actors are in a particular party slot and then changing image to match. This will let me make scenes take into account who is in the party at the time and arrange them accordingly - this is important since I'll have extra actors beyond current party. The script used is the same from MV and is compatible with my current core plugin setup in MZ. Thank goodness.