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1. To conclude in a successful or pleasing manner; to work out. I'm delighted with how that all panned out! I hope this decision pans out for him.
2. To rest or fall asleep, especially in a sprawling or prostrate position. Tom is panned out on the sofa, if you're looking for him. Would you mind fixing dinner tonight? I need to go pan out for a little while.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
1. and zoom out to move back to a wider angle picture using a zoom lens. The camera zoomed out. Pan out at this point in the script and give a wider view of the scene.
2. Go to turn out (all right).
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
Turn out well, succeed, as in If I don't pan out as a musician, I can always go back to school. This expression alludes to washing gold from gravel in a pan. [Mid-1800s]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
1. To prove successful, effective, or satisfactory; turn out well: I'm glad to see that your business plan has panned out.
2. To have some specified result: My plans panned out poorly.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Phrasal Verbs. Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
in. [for something] to work out or turn out all right. Don’t worry. Everything will pan out okay.
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
pan out, to
To succeed. The term alludes to the pan used by prospectors to wash gold from the gravel of streams; what remained in the pan was the ore. The term was transferred to other kinds of success in the late nineteenth century. Bret Harte used it in Drift from Two Shores (1879): “That depends pretty much on how things pan out.”
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer