When comparing the adjustments and engineering necessary to set up a video camera versus a film camera, one is suddenly struck by the realization that--Video is hard, film is easy. Why is that? Isn't technology supposed to make things easier?
All motion picture film cameras--from 8mm to 70mm --have just five basic adjustments, three of which are on the lens itself: Focus, aperature, zoom (unless it's a primary lens), shutter angle and film speed. Even an experienced still photographer can get great images the first time out with a professional motion picture camera if the basic tenets of exposure, focus and composition are followed.
Broadcast video cameras on the other hand, are far more complicated. There are additional adustments for white balance, knee, RGB control, gain, gamma, pedestal, detail enhancement, high speed shutter, etc. Each one of these adjustments must be carefully made or else the resulting video is severely compromised.
Logically a video camera operator should be paid more than a film camera operator since it is harder to get good video; it takes more skill and it takes longer to set up a video camera. Alas, we know the truth. So what can be done to optimize the video camera for achieveing the best images possible for FILMLOOK processing?
First, be extremely familiar with the broadcast camera and its adjustments, or find a good video d.p. or operator who is. The "Factory Preset" on the camera or the adjustments made at the rental house where the camera came from may not necessarily be the best settings for the conditions you are shooting under. Be careful not to unintentionally overexpose the video since, unlike film emulsion, the CCDs in the video camera can be very unforgiving of overexposures! Never use the high speed shutter or high detail enhancement, since even normal video without FILMLOOK will look electronic and unnatural.
It is important to have good exposure, and to think in terms of "film" when lighting a scene. This implies using dramatic film-style lighting techniques as well as using optical filters on the lens, such as Tiffen Pro-Mist®, polarizers, ND filters or any other filter you would normally use for film.
The skill of a good camera operator can not be overemphasized
especially in video. It is far more of a technical challenge
to create film-style images in video than to shoot film. However,
the time spent in setting up a video camera is a wise investment
when comparing costs in film versus video, especially in postproduction.
FILMLOOK GETS BIG
HOLLYWOOD--Miramax films is releasing the the critically acclaimed documentary "The Big One" on video, which was recently transferred for home video release by FILMLOOK.
During the film simulation process, color and contrast levels
of the motion picture were supervised by producer and star of
"The Big One," Michael Moore. Adjustments were made
on a scene-by-scene basis and the feature was recorded on a separate
D2. Although "The Big One" originally was shot on video
and transferred to 35mm film for theatrical release, Miramax
films selected FILMLOOK for the home video release as did New
Line Home Video for their documentary "Hoop Dreams."
"The Big One" is currently available at Blockbuster
and other home video outlets nationwide.
FILMLOOK would like to welcome four series this fall. New
this fall is Jim Henson's "Brats of the Lost Nebula,"
MTV's "The Revue," CBS's "Unsolved Mysteries,"
and UPN's "Guys Like Us." Filmlook would like to welcome
returning hit Canadian series "Diva" for its second
season and series segments for "JAG", "Pensacola"
and "The Nanny". FILMLOOK congratulates the cast and
crew members of these series and we thank the producers for choosing
FILMLOOK for their film simulation.
NEW YORK-Zohe Productions has produced the miniseries "An American Love Story", a six part documentary shot in video and processed in FILMLOOK.
The documentary follows one interacial New York couple and
their children on their daily struggle with city life, racism,
vacations and boyfriends. It was shot in 3 CCD Hi8 over the course
of several years and then processed in FILMLOOK. The American
Playhouse-featured series can be seen on local PBS stations nationwide.
TAKING STOCK IN FILMLOOK
Some production companies and projects using FILMLOOK...Quantum
Television, "Sunworks" Tanning Lotion Infomercial...Triage
Productions, HBO First Look: "Saving Private Ryan"...The
Jones Group, "Moneyguard" financial video...Lakeshore
Productions, Golden Tee Golf "Chimp" spot...Taco Bell
Europe, food product shots...The Big Picture, "The Tupperware
Challenge" infomercial...Pittmobile Records, "She Was
Never Her" music video...Strategic Perception, "Skandalakis
for Lt. Governor" political spots...Golden Tapa Productions,
World Youth Network--"Living from the Inside Out."
FILMLOOK GETS RUDE
LOS ANGELES--Showtime networks and Columbia Tristar television
is producing the irreverent comedy "Rude
The series stars Sherilyn Fenn as a
LOS ANGELES--Premiering on
The PAXnet series is one of the first programs featured on
the new network that is dedicated to family oriented cable programming.
Check local listings for air times of "It's a Miracle."
FILMLOOK'S NY STATE OF MIND
NEW YORK--FILMLOOK has
The three minute video profiles,
HELP SAVE A TREE!
FILMLOOK is environmentally