Download as PDF - Kodak

Download as PDF - Kodak

True Blood

HBO’s Vampire Tale Enters Fifth Season

True Blood, the death-obsessed HBO

television series that portrays vampires as a

misunderstood, oppressed minority, begins

its fi fth season in June. In a world with dozens

of vampire entertainment options, the show

has earned such a devoted following that it

has become HBO’s most-watched series since

The Sopranos. Recognized by critics and fans,

True Blood has also received more than a dozen

Emmy® nominations.

Based on “The Southern Vampire

Mysteries” novels by Charlaine Harris, the

storyline centers on a telepathic waitress

(Anna Paquin) and her blood-soaked

adventures in a small Louisiana town. True

Blood, according to the story, is a synthetic

blood substitute that helps the undead keep

their thirsts quenched. But for some reason,

regular folks are still less than accepting of

the pale, persecuted — yet sexy — Vampires.

Cinematography duties on the series are shared by David Klein,

ASC and Romeo Tirone, who shoot alternating episodes. Tirone

has enjoyed a prolifi c career as a cinematographer, and in addition

to shooting, he has directed episodes of True Blood and Showtime’s

Dexter. Klein broke into fi lmmaking in the 1990s with Clerks, Mallrats

and Chasing Amy, and has added more than 30 narrative projects to

his resume, including Good Time Max, Zack and Miri Make a Porno,

Red State, as well as episodes of Flight 29 Down and Pushing Daisies.

John B. Aronson, Joseph Gallagher,

Matthew Jensen, Stephen St. John and

Checco Varese, ASC, AMC all previously

contributed to the series.

Describing the look of True Blood,

Tirone says, “One of the major things that

separates True Blood from most shows is

that we shoot on fi lm. That helps us keep

our look consistent. There is nothing like the

‘romance’ that fi lm gives to a show. We shoot

a lot of night exteriors, and are very careful to

keep our night look constant. Darkness is a

big part of the character of True Blood, we are

always on the edge trying not to be too safe

with our look.”

“Slick and sexy, with an edge,” adds Klein.

“I try to take the sharpness off of the edge

a bit, because I think when you’re dealing

with such supernatural material, if the look

starts to stray too far from reality, everything

begins to feel phony and lame. So at its core, the lighting of the

show, for me, needs to feel based in reality.”

Generally, the approach features wider lenses with somewhat

saturated colors. The lenses are usually COOKE S4 primes, with

the occasional use of ANGENIEUX OPTIMO zooms. Klein says he

prefers to move closer and do a close-up on a 50mm rather than

using a longer lens and hanging back. “To me, it feels more like a

“More importantly, I lean on

fi lm so heavily every day. I know

that I can blow out a highlight by

fi ve stops and it’s going to look

gorgeous. “

feature fi lm that way,” he says. “The combination of the Cookes

and the Angenieux zoom is one of the best I’ve found, but I still

prefer the look of the primes.”

An episode is usually shot in 10-15 days. The main format is 3-perf

35mm, usually shot with a single ARRICAM and KODAK VISION3

500T Color Negative Film 5219 and KODAK VISION3 250D Color

Negative Film 5207. But Klein notes they use a wide variety of

cameras and formats when the story requires.

“We’ve used a hand-cranked ARRIFLEX, CANON 5Ds, REDs, ARRI

235s and 435s,” says Klein. “Our stories contain many fl ashbacks,

and we use many different tools to depict them. We’ll sometimes

push one or two stops to add some contrast and grain, just

noticeable enough to make it dance — and that grain is wonderful.

It’s one of the best tools I have at my disposal. It’s something I really

miss when I shoot digitally. Grain can be an actress’s best friend.”

During season four, Klein used

the technique for a sequence that

fl ashed back to a 1920s Louisiana

sharecropper’s house at nighttime.

“I went all moonlight and oil-burning

lamps inside the house,” he says. “I

knew that I wanted to desaturate

the image and add grain, so I did

a two-stop push and asked my

dailies colorist to drop the color

out by 60 percent. The initial idea

was to shoot 16mm, but we wanted

to do something with our existing

equipment, and this was the solution.

The grain really sang. We were

already rating at 2,000 ASA, but at

times I underexposed the negative

even further.

“After lifting the image up, it was like

looking at a faded, old photograph from

that era. In fi nal color, we desaturated

everything that was brown and blue

a little further than anything else, so

the reds and skin tones held out the best. Suzuki Ingerslev, our

production designer, really helped me out with this by painting the

house very neutral and keeping most of the color out of the frame. It

really felt like a faded, color photograph from that era that had sat in

the sun for too long.”

After a series of cost comparisons, the production determined

that the choice of origination format was not a money issue.

“(Executive producer) Gregg Fienberg and I decided to keep the

show on fi lm,” says Klein. “The current crop of digital cameras is

amazing, but to switch a show from fi lm to digital will change the

look of the show. That was one of my main arguments: If you’re

happy with the way True Blood looks right now, then don’t change it.

“More importantly, I lean on fi lm so heavily every day,” he

says. “I know that I can blow out a highlight by fi ve stops and it’s

going to look gorgeous. I know that a certain actor’s face, when

lit one-and-a-half stops under, is going to glow perfectly. There’s

no monitor I have to babysit. I can light by eye, through the lens,

instead of going back and forth between the monitor and the set,

which takes time.

“Also, with fi lm, I can lock in the look by exposing the negative a

certain way, which you can’t currently do with digital. With digital,

you expose to capture all the information, and then you push it

around in post. You’re basically creating the entire look in a color

suite. I prefer to lock 90 percent of the look into the negative on

the set, and then fi ne tune it in the color suite.”

The post facility is Technicolor, where Peter Ritter serves as dailies

colorist and Scott Klein handles fi nal color. “They know what I mean

when I say, ‘Make this scene almost dark enough to get me fi red,’”

says Klein with a laugh.

Key grip Bud Scott introduced Klein to CHIMERA cloth, which he

uses for large, diffuse sources. “I tend to go somewhat big on the

show,” says Klein. “Vampires come out at night, so we have a lot of

night exteriors, and we often use Condors and big sources — last

week we had two 20K Fresnels — to simulate moonlight. CHIMERA

is one of the thickest diffusion materials I’ve used, so it takes a lot

of fi repower and manpower to make it soft, especially when we go

through two rags.”

True Blood provides the cinematographers and their crews with

an ever-shifting array of challenges and opportunities. Whether it’s

a modern-day scene shot on one of the show’s six stages on The Lot

at Santa Monica Boulevard and Formosa in Hollywood, or a 1920s

fl ashback on a remote location, they are ready.

“What keeps me most engaged in this show, and what is also

exhausting, is that we’re constantly given new storylines, new

fl ashbacks, new stories to tell within our story,” Klein says. “Every

episode has something that requires a different look. It defi nitely

keeps us on our toes.”

“It’s one of the best aspects of shooting a show about

vampires,” adds Tirone. “They have lived so long that it lets us

shoot fl ashbacks from any era.”


Previous page/top: David Klein, ASC. Center: (L-R) Rutina Wesley and Anna Paquin.

This page: (L-R) Stephen Moyer and Romeo Tirone. (credit: John P. Johnson/HBO)

2-perf Format

Advantageous to Budget and Schedule

Director Hyung-Suk Lee and director of cinematography

Sung-Kuk Lee shot the short fi lm Two Boys and a Sheep with funds

from the Korean Film Council’s Production Support Program for

Independent Films. For several reasons, the fi lmmakers chose

to use 2-perf KODAK VISION3 500T Color Negative Film 5219,

making it the fi rst Korean production in that format.

“The fi lm is about two diametrically-opposed lifestyles,

homosexuality and heterosexuality,” explains Sung-Kuk. “We

wanted to portray these lifestyles with the dramatic space they

deserve, and this would be almost impossible in a digital format.

Only 35mm fi lm accurately conveys the emotions of the characters,

and allows audiences not merely to see or hear the movie, but also

to experience it.

“The movie had to be fi lmed right before sunset with the unstable

glow from the sun, and we knew that 5219 Film would provide

the appropriate dynamic range,” adds the cinematographer. “We

attempted to use natural light as much as possible with the correct

exposure, which is one of the advantages of the fi lm format. By

enhancing shadow detail and by setting highlighting around faces,

we accentuated the skin tones to describe the emotional state of

each character. Using different lenses (a wide-angle lens for outdoor

shooting and a telephoto for indoors), we were able to introduce

variation into the shots, so that despite the fact that all the ‘action’

takes place in one day, the audience is engaged by visual clues.”

The two creatives agreed that shooting in the 2-perf format gave

them advantages in terms of both budget and time. Sung-Kuk says,

“We went through test shooting during pre-production and concluded

that there is little difference in image quality between the 2-perf and

4-perf format. You might think there’s an inevitable frame loss since

2-perf is done with half the existing frame, but by setting frame loss

to zero, enormous fi nancial resources can be saved. In other words,

choosing 2-perf gave us the fl exibility to spend on other production

elements such as production design, lighting, crew and actors.

“The 2-perf format also reduces the number of roll changes,

thus reducing loading time,” he continues. “This meant we were

free from the ‘rolling out’ effect that can interfere with the actors’

emotional fl ow.”

The fi lmmakers point out that one of the last shots of the movie

was also one of the most important. They wanted to shoot it

handheld and it was a long take–longer than one minute–which

tracked fi ve characters and an animal. Since the 2-perf format fi ts

twice as many widescreen images on a given length of 35mm

fi lm, slashing raw stock and processing costs in half compared to

conventional 4-perf 35mm formats, the fi lmmakers report they

felt free to set as many takes for this scene as needed because the

2-perf format was so cost effective.

A DI was completed using scanned 4K images that were

recorded out to fi lm. Two Boys and a Sheep will be submitted to

various international fi lm festivals as a 35mm print.


Taking a dolly shot on the panther, Director of

Cinematography Sung-Kuk Lee follows a man

(Kwan-Jae Ko) from the back to take a tracking shot.

(Credit: Courtesy of Hyung-Suk Lee)

“Only 35mm film accurately

conveys the emotions of

the characters, and allows

audiences not merely to see

or hear the movie, but also

to experience it.”

Familial Ties Uncovered

in Touching Drama

People Like Us

To hear cinematographer Salvatore Totino, ASC, AIC talk about

his latest fi lm, People Like Us, you can tell the project resonated

deeply with him. The DreamWorks SKG fi lm, about a man who

must deliver part of his deceased father’s fortune to a sister he has

never met, stars Chris Pine, Elizabeth Banks and Michelle Pfeiffer in

writer-producer Alex Kurtzman’s feature directing debut. The story,

written by Kurtzman, is quite a departure from his usual fantasy and

science-fi ction fare (Transformers, Star Trek, Alias and Fringe), and it

really gripped Totino.

“I equate this fi lm to a modern-day version of the psychology that

was behind Italian neo-realism fi lms,” says Totino. “This is a real

story that has been fi ctionalized to some degree but is accessible to

everybody. With that storyline, a lot of people will turn around and

say I know somebody like that or that has happened to me or will

know what it is like to be an illegitimate child. It’s so real, and that is

what drew me to the fi lm.”

What did you feel you could bring to the film as far as a

visual approach?

Totino: My whole idea with the fi lm was to help create a real

environment so that the viewer can relate to the story. For example,

we would be inside a house in the middle of the day, and it would be

lit from outside so it feels tangible.

Did shooting on fi lm help in your approach as opposed to using

a digital format?

Absolutely. If I had my choice, I’d always shoot fi lm as much as


Which fi lm stocks did you use?

We shot KODAK VISION3 500T Color Negative Film 5219, KODAK

VISION3 250D Color Negative Film 5207 and a little bit of KODAK

VISION2 100T Color Negative Film 5212, which I used on a few

daytime exteriors. Most of the time I chose 5207, including for the

majority of daytime interiors.

For nighttime shots, did you do any pushing of the fi lm stock?

I didn’t need to do it. I worked in the toe of the fi lm when I could, and

there is a lot of latitude there to work with. I didn’t want to change

the grain structure at all by pushing the fi lm because I was trying to

be clean and not artifi cial. I was very conscious of making it feel very

naturally lit.

Considering the cast, was there any special lighting for them?

No, and that was a fi ne line to walk because it was all about keeping

it genuine. I wasn’t trying to be extra conscious of beauty. I wanted

them to look good, but I wanted it to look real and not over the

top. The fi lm is very emotional, and you forget you are watching a

movie. I give credit to Alex (Kurtzman) for that. Although this is his

fi rst feature as a director, I felt like I was working with a seasoned

fi lmmaker. I was very impressed with how prepared he was.

It sounds like there was restraint in having the cinematography

and look call attention to itself.

I try to do that with most of my fi lms, unless it is something like a

science-fi ction thriller where the look is part of the story. Alex wanted

the fi lm to look good, and gave me a lot of room as to where I wanted

to go with it. In this fi lm, the look is there to help tell the story but not

distract from it.

You shot this in 3-perf Super 35mm. Which cameras and lenses

did you employ?

I shot the fi lm on ARRI ST and LT cameras and COOKE S4 lenses.

I love those lenses. They are slightly on the warm side and are very

clean. I own a set — that’s how much I love them! I usually shoot

two cameras and operate one — the B camera. I had an incredible

operator in Colin Anderson who brought a lot to the table. I gave

Colin a lot of room to bring his storytelling abilities to the fi lm.

How did camera movement factor into the visual approach?

We were always mindful of moving the camera. The cameras were

on dollies, sliders, and STEADICAMS. Every scene had a little bit of

camera movement to it to help draw you in and help you focus on

what was happening with the actors. Camera movement makes the

audience feel like they are there as opposed to being just an observer,

and that is what really helps them relate to this fi lm, as well.

Which scene sticks in your memory the most?

There are a couple emotional scenes with Michelle (Pfeiffer) and

Chris (Pine), and I found myself crying behind the camera. When

you’re behind the camera and you start crying … you go back to that

moment when you were younger and deciding you want to make

fi lms — that you believe in them. The actor and actress have taken

you somewhere. It’s one of those extremely rare moments of ‘This

is what I always wanted to do.’ You’re an artist, you’re a technician,

you’re a manager, and you can become so preoccupied with what’s

at hand to accomplish that day that when you get those moments,

it’s so special.

When lighting interiors through windows, what are you using

to get enough light for your exposure choice?

Different locations called for different lighting elements. We shot

a scene in Cole’s, which is a restaurant and bar in downtown

Los Angeles with very dark windows and a dark interior. I lit that

with 240,000 watts of light through the windows. We used two

100,000-watt SOFTSUNS, plus a bunch of 18Ks. When you see the

scene, you don’t even feel like it’s lit. In Michelle’s house interiors,

I used some 18K ARRIMAX HMIs outside.

Do you complement this lighting with anything inside the

interior locations?

Very little is used inside. I try to use a little bit of bounce. But that’s

what is so great about the fi lm stocks — you have this latitude and

contrast there that allowed me to work in this environment. I would

have had to approach it differently if I did it digitally.

Did you encounter a shot or scene that turned out to be more

complicated than anticipated?

There is a night scene with Chris and his mom on a bench in Laurel

Canyon overlooking the city, and we had talked about approaching

it a certain way. When we got there with the actors and blocked the

scene, it wasn’t working the way we had planned. We only had one

night to do it. It’s a low-budget fi lm so we couldn’t come back, and

we were fi ghting against the rising sun. We simplifi ed it and changed

everything — the coverage, the angles, the camera movement —

and it turned out great. We shot listed the script beforehand, but

sometimes you have to change it up when the players get there.

We had that fl exibility to do that, and it was great to work that way.

That’s the way I work with Ron Howard, as well.

Another good thing about this fi lm is that we worked really hard to

make sure we had a lot of coverage, which gave Alex more choices

editorially. That is unusual in a lower budget fi lm because you don’t

have the time. We shot for 42 days with two days of additional

shooting. We had a great crew and the actors were dialed in. The

coverage enhanced the fi lm.

Who handled your dailies and digital intermediate?

Deluxe Laboratories developed the fi lm, and we did dailies at EFILM.

Ben Estrada did my dailies as well as the DI color timing. I viewed

dailies in digital form on DVD, but I got to look at some prints when I

needed to. The fi lm colorist was Yvan Lucas.

Did you use the DI to create a look or was that done primarily in

camera beforehand?

We captured most of the look in camera. The DI was more like

conventional color timing except for a few spots where we did some

Power Windows, and that was only necessary because while we

were fi lming, it would have taken extra time to fl ag off and bring

down the lighting on a particular wall. Instead, we used that time to

get more coverage through an extra setup or two.

Looking back, what do you take away from this movie’s


It was an incredible experience, and working with those professionals

in a low-budget world helped make a difference. Producer Clayton

Townsend — with whom I did my fi rst feature Any Given Sunday —

worked really hard to give us what we needed to tell the story. Ida

Random, the production designer, worked with one hand tied behind

her back because she didn’t have the funds but gave us sets that

were fantastic. She did a great job and helped me tell the story. The

other asset was the collaborative relationship with the director. Alex

felt comfortable and trusted me, and that collaboration always makes

a difference.


Left page: (L-R) Chris Pine, Elizabeth Banks, and Michael Hall D’Addario. Center: (L-R) Michael

Hall D’Addario and Elizabeth Banks.

Right page: (L-R) Salvatore Totino and Alex Kurtzman on set. (Credit: ©DreamWorks Distribution

Co., LLC. All rights reserved.)


cinematographer Wally Pfi ster,

ASC, BSC recently brought his

sharp eye for narrative to one

of the most well-known ad

campaigns in recent history:

the National Milk Mustache

“got milk?®” Campaign.

Pfi ster is known for his

arresting images in the feature

fi lm arena, on hits like The

Dark Knight, Batman Begins,

Inception, Moneyball, and the

forthcoming The Dark Knight

Rises. His insistence on the

highest possible image quality

— and the support of director

Christopher Nolan — has led

him to shoot critical sequences

in 65mm and IMAX fi lm

formats. The results speak for

themselves — The Dark Knight,

for example, was widely praised

while raking in more than $1

billion for Warner Bros.

Pfi ster is now embarking on

a new chapter in his career,

making the leap from director

of photography to director.

Currently in the early stages

of preproduction on a major,

high-budget feature fi lm that

Nolan is executive producing,

Wally Pfi ster

Brings Big Screen

Gloss to Commercials

Pfi ster says that his focus is

now on character and story

— but that doesn’t mean he’s

leaving behind everything he’s

learned about telling stories

with images.

“Of course images are

always going to be important

to me,” he says. “But the new

component is storytelling

through performance. The

broader aspects of storytelling

are really where my head is at

these days.”

Pfi ster is not exactly a

fi rst-time director. He’s

been working as a directorcinematographer


commercials for six years, and

he logged time in the editing

room when he was a news and

documentary cameraman in

the early years of his career.

But the “got milk?” campaign

presented his fi rst opportunity

to dabble in comedy. He had

a willing accomplice — Salma

Hayek was onboard as the


“When I fi rst saw the boards

for ‘got milk? — Midnight Run,’

I wasn’t sure how funny we

could make it,” Pfi ster recalls.

“Then I had a conversation

with Salma, and she really

helped take it in a more deeply

comic, at times even slapstick,

direction. She wanted to show

off her comic chops, which I

thought was a great way to go.

We worked the boards over to

incorporate broader humor,

while keeping the narrative

extremely abbreviated and

effi cient, which is what’s

needed for a commercial.”

In the spot, Hayek returns

home late, dressed to the nines

and looking glamorous. She

takes a milk container from the

fridge and discovers it’s empty.

Needing milk for her child’s

breakfast in the morning, she

ventures out to a convenience

store, which is out of milk, and

another that is closed. It begins

to rain and she breaks a heel.

While desperately driving past

a cow pasture at dawn, Hayek

attempts to crawl through

a fence, only to be chased

off by the cow. Eventually,

desperation drives her to fl ag

down a milk delivery van, and

the driver hands her a gallon

of milk. Comically disheveled,

she makes it home in time

to provide breakfast for her

daughter, and to enjoy a glass

of milk herself. The kicker is

that unfortunately, the cereal

box is discovered to be empty.

The spot was fi lmed over two

days on a variety of locations

north of Los Angeles. “As a

director-cinematographer, I

knew when and how I wanted

to shoot,” says Pfi ster. “I

obviously had strong feelings

about how I wanted to present

it and what format I wanted to

use, and it was very important

to have the exposure latitude

of fi lm. I fi rmly believe the

spot required all the gloss of a

feature fi lm. I wanted to catch

the beauty of the early morning

light on fi lm, and I wanted the

latitude to let the sun blow

out a touch once we did get to

morning. Shooting fi lm was an

easy choice for me. It allowed

me to shoot quickly, and it

brought about the natural look

and mood I was after.”

The “got milk? — Midnight

Run” spot was fi lmed in 4-perf

format using the full 35mm

negative. The stock was KODAK

“Shooting fi lm was an easy

choice for me. It allowed

me to shoot quickly, and it

brought about the natural

look and mood I was after.”

VISION3 500T Color Negative

Film 5219. The initial timing

was handled by Sparkle at

Technicolor in Los Angeles. The

agency was Deutsch, New York.

“The agency was very

happy that we took it in a more

comedic direction,” says Pfi ster.

“I think it’s smart, because

it helps the spot stand out.

Going a little bit over the top,

and seeing Salma in those

humanizing situations makes

it memorable, something that

people talk about. And of

course if it catches the attention

of the audience, and makes

them smile, they are much more

likely to be paying attention

when the ‘button’ identifi es the

product at the end.”

Pfi ster also turned to 35mm

fi lm for a completely different

type of spot, this one fi lmed at

a track in Spain. In it, two cars

are lined up as if to race. The

engines rev, and the helmet

visors are fl ipped down. Cut

to a close-up of the key —

counterintuitively, turning the

engine off. Car doors open, and

a foot emerges to push each

car slowly forward. Slowly,

the viewer realizes that the

“race” is just two cars coasting.

Eventually, one pulls away. The

idea is to demonstrate that

Michelin tires are designed

to be more effi cient with

less resistance than their

competitors’ tires.

The spot, titled “Hills,” was

one of four for Michelin that

Pfi ster shot and directed over

four days at the track. Again,

he shot full frame 4-perf 35mm

in spherical format. This time,

the stock was KODAK VISION3

250D Color Negative Film


“It was a terrifi c idea and

a great, interesting way to

illustrate the point,” says

Pfi ster. “The producers

suggested that I shoot digital,

saying that it would be

cheaper, but I didn’t believe

it. There are circumstances

when shooting fi lm is actually

cheaper. In this case, I found

a way to minimize the costs,

because I felt it was important.

I was traveling to a foreign

country, and using an almost

entirely Spanish-speaking

crew, with the exception of my

key grip Ray Garcia and fi rst

AD Peter Jackson.

“Once again, I had a very

tight schedule and I wanted

the best light of the day. The

fi nal shot looks right into the

sun and I needed the latitude. I

needed to be able to shoot fast

— to grab the camera and run.”

Pfi ster laid an ARRI 235

directly on the track to get a

low angle. He had an ARRI 435

mounted on an Ultimate arm,

which he operated while Dean

Bailey, a colleague from the

Dark Knight shoots, drove the

vehicle. An old friend from fi lm

school at AFI, cinematographer

Flavio Labiano, operated

another camera and grabbed

additional unit shots.

“It was fun and exciting to

do all four of these spots in

comfortable fashion, without

having to worry about the

blazing sun in the shot,” says

Pfi ster. “The ability to shoot fast

without compromise, and its

simplicity are my main reasons

for shooting fi lm.”

Not surprisingly, Pfi ster plans

to originate on celluloid for his

upcoming feature directorial

debut as well. “I’ll be shooting

fi lm,” he says. “As a director, I’m

thinking in a new way, but I’m

going to apply every lesson I’ve

learned as a cinematographer.

I’m not going to compromise

or leave behind the visual

integrity that I applied in the

features I shot.”


Salma Hayek stars in a spot for the National

Milk Mustache “got milk?®” Campaign (credit:

courtesy of AKA Media Inc. for MilkPEP)

An Epic Surf Movie With A Twist

Sure a global, civilization-ending apocalypse has wiped out the

world as we know it, but maybe things aren’t so bad after all. That’s

the idea director Joe Guglielmino sought to explore in his latest surf

documentary, Year Zero. Guglielmino runs the entertainment division

for Globe International, a surf and skate gear and apparel maker.

“If anyone is going to survive an apocalypse with smiles on their

faces, it would probably be surfers, because as long as everyone

is safe and they can fi nd a wave, they are pretty happy,” says

Guglielmino, who was inspired by the conceptual surf fi lms made by

George Greenough and Jack McCoy in the 1970s and 1980s.

Though categorized as documentaries, conceptual surf fi lms

like Year Zero are experimental in nature and almost music

video-like. “Surfi ng itself and communing with nature is a

psychedelic experience in that it is

transformative,” he explains. “The

goal is to try to get the viewer as

close to that experience as possible

by using high frame rates to slow

down time and music to really

drive that home, honing in on little


A big part of his aesthetic, and by

extension the Globe brand aesthetic,

is the use of KODAK Super 16mm

Film to capture the visuals. “I’ve

always had an incredible affi nity for

fi lm — the tactile nature of it; loading

mags with your hands; its durability and ruggedness; the incredible

latitude and versatility of the Kodak stocks; and of course, the look,”

he notes. “It has an incredible quality that is still unsurpassed, in my


As far as a cost comparison, he says shooting and processing fi lm

versus renting and shooting high-end high defi nition was practically a

wash. The crew also needed minimal gear to get through customs as

effi ciently as possible, and oftentimes they have to swim to beaches

with their gear in watertight Pelican cases.

“Our production schedule is very different than traditional fi lms,

in that we are completely location based and also completely at

the whim of Mother Nature,” he explains. “We have to chase swells

to the far corners of the globe and often fi nd ourselves waiting for

weeks once we get there for everything to line up just right so we

can get what we need. When we tested and priced everything out

based on length of rentals, durability, etc., and compared Super

16mm against the best digital cameras and workfl ows, we decided

that shooting fi lm was the best option for us.”

Starring Globe-sponsored riders who are well known in the surf

community, Year Zero was shot in Western Australia, Indonesia,

Mexico, Southwest France, the north coast of Spain and Costa

Rica. Exact locations are never identifi ed because when it comes to

discovered waves, surfers are a protective bunch.

Their gear consisted of tripods, a couple ARRI SR-2 High Speeds and

two 35mm CANON 15-600mm zooms modifi ed for Super 16 (one

by Optex, one by Century Precision

Optics), which doubles the focal

length. Cameras were loaded with

KODAK VISION2 50D Color Negative

Film 7201 and KODAK VISION3 250D

Color Negative Film 7207. After the

12-month shoot, around 40,000 feet

of fi lm had been shot.

Guglielmino’s longtime director of

photography, Scott Soens, actually

taught him how to shoot because

they realized two angles on the

same action were better for editing.

“Normally, I manned the longer lens,” says Soens, “and then Joe

would be just a little bit wider and at more of a straight-on angle,

which was free of obstructions in front of the lens in order to get

the clip that makes the trick. I would experiment with foreground,

ramping speeds, rack focusing, extreme angles and we can cut

back and forth between the two angles. I usually speed ramp

after the surfer drops in, right when he starts his session and then

return to normal speed after he’s fi nished.”

Adds Guglielmino, “With long focal lengths, we try to build the

frame so that you’re not just seeing a guy and ocean. We want

a background, a foreground and to have the athlete performing

between the two and then maximize the amount of action

happening in the frame.”

“I love working with film because you don’t have

to do much to it to make it look beautiful.”

The fi lmmakers tried for locations that lent themselves to a

post-apocalyptic landscape. “For instance,” cites the director,

“along the southwest coast of France we shot where there were

World War II bunkers jutting out from the sand, using those in the

foreground to look like ruins backed by these incredible waves.”

The third integral member of this tight crew is water

cinematographer Rick Jakovich, who’s out in the waves with a

MILIKEN DBM 55 Super 16mm camera in a waterproof housing.

“Some of the most stunning shots in the fi lm are done by Rick,”

Guglielmino says. Jakovich was usually on a 10mm lens to capture

intense shots when the wave barrels, and also used a spring-wound

Bolex with a longer lens to focus in on surfi ng intricacies.

Citing a ratio of one cloudy day for every three sunny days, Soens

shoots clean at a stop of T16 without any special processing, though

a roll here or there may be pushed when needed. A 72-degree

shutter helps with clarity on high-speed shots. While the SR-2

cameras go up to 150 fps, the MILIKEN is twice as fast.

A familiarity with the surfers helps them know what to expect.

“We know what the surfers are like, what their body positions are

and can pick the best angles for each surfer,” says Soens. “That’s

important to make a trick look much better.”

Soens usually counts on spending four to six hours a day shooting.

The surfers perform in rotating groups so they are able to take breaks.

The cameramen don’t have that luxury. “I defi nitely have pulled

nine-hour days on the beach — just by myself,” Soens says with

a laugh. “Everyone on board knows that this is a production, and

needs to be out there performing as best as they can. The riders are

athletes, and they really put their time in out there.”

After each location shoot, Rushes in Hollywood did 1080p

transfers supervised by telecine colorist Gino Panero. Guglielmino

and another core member of the team, editor George Manzanilla,

would then make their shot selects. Working in ProRes 422 HQ at

full resolution in Final Cut Pro, Manzanilla would edit the fi lm, create

the looks and composite, built upon a score of songs from retro

rock band Black Mountain. Final output was in ProRes 422 HQ to a

BLU-RAY disc master.

“I love working with fi lm because you don’t have to do much to it

to make it look beautiful,” Manzanilla says. “The scene would dictate

if we should add a layer of Super 16. Sometimes a beautiful bright

sunset shot would look awesome on top of a shot of a girl putting

her hands up to the sky. Most of the compositing was pretty simple

transfer modes. We’re just overlaying visual elements on top of other

visual elements, using three or four layers in a shot at most.”

Though fi lm has the grain aesthetic the fi lmmakers like, some

footage was grunged up further with overlays of fi lm grains, dust and

inverted white fi lm leader.

Apocalyptic cut scenes throughout the fi lm tie the surfi ng

locations together. Shot in the deserts of Southern California, these

feature people cavorting around decaying castoffs, bonfi res and

Mad Max-like muscle cars. Most was shot with a ZEISS 11-110mm

zoom, but the fi lmmakers went longer on the car scenes. “The cars

racing through the desert were shot long lens — at 24 frames per

second at 600mm you get a little camera shake that adds intensity

to the driving scenes,” notes Guglielmino.

Even Manzanilla got into the act by shooting cut-scene footage

on Super 8mm with a BEAULIEU 4008 converted to a 16:9 aspect

ratio by Pro8mm in Burbank. He shot the same 50D and 250D

Films cut down for Super 8, and Pro8mm processed and transferred

the footage.

“I grew up shooting Super 8 fi lm and stealing my dad’s cameras

to do it,” he points out. “It’s fun to be able to use it professionally,

and it was easy to integrate into this grainy, grungy, post-apocalyptic


After 18 months of shooting and postproduction, the fi lmmakers

created a visually and sonically mesmerizing fi lm.

“So many people watch the fi lm and keep saying how beautiful

it is or how amazing the shots look and they can’t quite fi gure out

why they love it so much. I tell them what they are responding so

strongly to is the magic of fi lm. And we shot it all on cameras that

are way older than we are!”

Year Zero won Surfer Magazine’s Movie of the Year Award, and is

now available on iTunes, BLU-RAY disc and DVD.

Photos: Shot on location around the world Year Zero delivers a unique concept with

stunning visuals that capture the essence of surfing in a novel setting. (Credit: Courtesy

of Globe International)

Gate of Hell and A Diary of Chuji’s Travels Restored


IMAGICA in Japan recently

restored several major titles,

including such classics as Gate

of Hell (Jigokumon) and A Diary

of Chuji’s Travels (Chuji tabi nikki:

Goyo hen).

Gate of Hell is the fi rst

Japanese feature fi lm shot on

EASTMAN Color Negative

Film 5248 / Tungsten EI25.

Directed by Teinsuke Kinugasa

in 1953, this movie was

awarded the Grand Prize in

Cannes in 1954 and also won

two Academy Awards®.

The restoration was a joint

project of Kadokawa Pictures

and the National Film Center

(NFC) of the National Museum

of Modern Art, Tokyo, who

conducted research and led

the project as fi lm archivists.

The intention was to faithfully

restore the original 1953 look

of EASTMAN Color Film.

“We found surviving

materials in three-color

separation black-and-white

master positives, color dupe

negatives, and a release

print of the fi lm,” explains

Norimasa Ishida, IMAGICA

Corp. technical advisor. “Sadly,

the original camera negative

fi lms were lost. We compared

the three materials and chose

the most information-rich

master for each scene. In

some scenes, only the release

print was available and in

those instances, we had to

later erase the English subtitle

with Reliance MediaWorks’

partnership and support.”

After the project planning,

the actual restoration process

took over six months. “The

most difficult part was the

re-registration of the RGB

separated images,” says

Kazuki Miura, IMAGICA

Corp. archiving specialist.

“The films were shrunk by

aging, and could not stabilize

with the pin registration of

today’s scanners.”

“One of our members came

up with the idea of customizing

the registration pins of the

scanner by physically curving

it for this project, and this

achieved fi ner alignment and

worked out well throughout

the rolls,” says Ishida.

“Several IMAGICA retirees

were brought back for the

projects as they were actually

involved with the original

postproduction. They helped

us to understand the early

color motion picture process.”

Originally, three-colorseparation


master positives of Gate

of Hell were not made. For

domestic release, direct

print films were used. But

as the film started getting

acclaimed internationally,

the studio decided to create

dupe negatives for further

demand of the release print.

“That is why the three-colorseparation


master positives were very

carefully created,” notes

Miura. “In Japan, as the

quality of intermediate films

increased, three-colorseparation


master positives were no

longer made after a while.”

The next step was grading.

Kadokawa and NFC agreed

that color should be graded

to reproduce the look of

1950’s EASTMAN Color

Film. “Fortunately, legendary

front-line cinematographer

Fujio Morita (JSC) who was

a camera assistant on Gate of

Hell understood the intention

of art and color of the fi lm,

and was able to supervise the

grading to revive the vibrant

look,” says Ishida. “Kadokawa

and NFC were very happy and

excited to see the restored

EASTMAN Color Film.”

Miura explains that because

Japanese fi lms are not as

internationally viewed as

Hollywood content, it is not

widely known that Japanese

fi lms are being restored on a

regular basis. In addition to

NFC, major domestic studios

have also been investing in

their heritage titles over the

past seven to eight years.

“The aim of restoration

varies depending on the

country or archivist,” adds

Ishida. “In Japan, the aim is

often to revive the original

look. This means researching

past technologies as well

as the intentions of the

filmmakers — instead of

making improvements or

enhancements in addition to

the original image, although

it is possible with today’s


The digitally restored

master was recorded to

KODAK VISION3 Color Digital

Intermediate Film 2254, and

printed on KODAK VISION

Color Print Film 2383.

A Diary of Chuji’s Travels

is a silent, tinted black-andwhite

print. Made in 1927 and

considered one of the best

fi lms of the pre-war period in

Japan, this three-part epic had

been lost for a long time, but

in 1991 a large part of it was

found by chance in Hiroshima.

“Our fi rst tinted fi lm

restoration project with NFC

was in 2008, and we have

completed about 17 tinted

short fi lms to date including

animation, documentary,

short fi lm and toy fi lm,”

says Yoshihiro Matsuo,

IMAGICA West Corp. fi lm

processing specialist. “The

digital restoration project of

A Diary of Chuji’s Travels is a

sole-project of NFC, but we

had an opportunity to work on

the title. NFC’s intention was to

restore tinted print fi lms.”

Surviving materials were

tinted nitrate positive fi lms

which were stored in NFC’s

storage. The materials were

seriously damaged, and dyes

were mostly faded.

Not many Japanese fi lms

from the 1920s and 1930s

survived, but archival groups

fi nd one from time to time.

Tinted print fi lms fell into

disuse as talking pictures

became more popular because

tinting would degrade the

quality of the soundtrack.

The restoration process

involved reinforcing and

manually cleaning the surviving

materials. A digitally-restored

black-and-white dupe negative

was then made, and printed on

KODAK Black-and-White Print

Film 2302 for tinting. “Working

with badly-damaged nitrate

fi lms was extremely diffi cult,

but we had another challenge

after printing, which was

tinting,” notes Matsuo.

“As tinted fi lms from

that era are generally quite

faded, we closely studied the

surviving materials, especially

around the perforation area

where more dyes remained

than image areas. We also

researched past restored

titles for references and then

decided how much tint was

appropriate for Chuji. We

discovered that three different

dyes were used for tinting,

depending on scenes, and we

tinted the fi lm accordingly.

We had never tinted a

feature-length title, so in

order to stabilize colors and

density, we needed to modify

our specially designed tinting


The question then arose,

should it be tinted in black

and white or restored using

the fi lm color process? “We

decided to tint in black and

white as we felt that this best

replicates the original state of

the fi lm,” says Matsuo. “Also

in black and white, the print

image consists of silver so the

black is cleaner and more pure.

In the color fi lm process, it is

like making a color photo copy,

so discrepancies in color occur.

You cannot achieve uniform

color in an original print.”

They were able to not only

bring back the original look of

the fi lm but also restore the

past motion picture techniques

from scratch. “If the original

title is made on fi lm, I believe

we should preserve on fi lm

because being faithful to

nuance in the original media

is the essential factor in

preservation and restoration,”

says. Matsuo. “The texture of

black-and-white fi lm, and the

aesthetic impression from the

combination of dyes and silver

are only replicable on fi lm.

“I feel tremendous

responsibility with my work,”

adds Matsuo. “We learned

about tinting techniques of 100

years ago through this project,

and now it is ready to pass

down to the next generation. I

feel I am standing in between

the past and the future, and that

makes me feel very proud.”


Across top: Scenes from Gate of Hell before

and after restoration (Photo ©1953 Kadokawa


Bottom: L-R Kazuki MIURA, archiving specialist

at IMAGICA Corp, Norimasa ISHIDA, technical

advisor at IMAGICA Corp.

Right: A restored and dyed positive from A

Diary of Chuji’s Travels. (Photo courtesy of

National Film Center, The National Museum of

Modern Art, Tokyo)

Italian Film Tackles Taboo

Subject of Police Brutality

Diaz-Don’t Clean Up This Blood

reconstructs the events of July

2001 when Italian police unleashed

a calculated frenzy of violence

on protesters at the G8 Summit.

During the scuffl es the day

before, one protester was killed.

Just before midnight, more than

300 police offi cers stormed the

Diaz school looking for Black Bloc

demonstrators. Inside the school

were about 90 activists, mostly

students from around Europe,

along with a handful of foreign

journalists preparing to bunk

down for the night on the school’s

fl oors. As the police burst in, the

young demonstrators raised their

hands to surrender. Undeterred

and unmoved, the police waded

in beating up both young and old,

male and female indiscriminately.

Diaz-Don’t Clean Up This Blood

is a reconstruction of those

terrible days from the viewpoints

of the police, the protesters, the

victims and the journalists who

were caught up in the tragedy. It

aims to analyze how frustration

can erupt into raw, uncontrollable

violence. The movie uses original

footage taken at the scene to

underline the fact that the fi lm is

based on actual events.

Cinematographer Gherardo

Gossi takes up the story. “Told

from different perspectives, the




camera describes the events of

that day, sticking close to the

heels of both perpetrators and

targets until the whole bloody

truth is told.

“During preparation for the fi lm,

I did a lot of comparison tests to

choose the right way to translate

such a compelling and sad story

into images,” explains Gossi. “In

the end, director Daniele Vicari

and I agreed to use 16mm fi lm for

its color depth, the reliability of

its fi lming system which means

handling, speed and lightness, and

fi lm’s ability to provide a striking

and solid image. The light grain and

the good defi nition in the blow-up

helped me to build a strong image.

A digital image would have been

too light for this kind of project.

“I used three KODAK Film

stocks,” he continues. “For the

majority of the fi lm that takes place

at night, I used KODAK VISION3

500T Color Negative Film 7219. I

chose it for its soft and very useful

reading of blacks, and its fl exibility

in DI. For day interiors, I used


Negative Film 7213 for its saturated

colors and high resolution. For the

remaining day exteriors, I used


Negative Film 7201 for its absent

grain setting and engraved colors.”

Much of the fi lm was shot on a

set in a backlot built by production

designer Marta Maffucci. A

greenscreen and inserts of 3-D

compositing were included. To

facilitate the VFX postproduction,

the fi lmmakers used grain

management software to lighten

the grain shots and allow for better

processing. After processing the

VFX, the shots were re-traced

in the software to re-grain the

image and incorporate with other

untreated shots.

“I worked at the DI with colorist

Angelo Francavilla at Technicolor

in Rome,” says Gossi. “Together

we modulated the contrast and

color saturation curves according

to the fi lm’s atmosphere. The fi lm

stocks with their tonal ranges, color

brilliance and good depth in blacks

and highlights helped enormously

in this respect.

Diaz-Don’t Clean Up

This Blood screened

at the 62nd Berlin

International Film

Festival where it won

the Audience Award

at the Panorama.

InCamera is published by Eastman Kodak Company. To see our expanded online edition, go to To be

featured in the magazine, please contact your local representative. You will fi nd your Kodak representative contact information at

KODAK, EASTMAN, VISION, VISION2, VISION3, and the fi lm numbers are trademarks. OSCAR is a trademark of the Academy of Motion

Picture Arts and Sciences. EMMY is a trademark of, and copyrighted by, the National Academy and American Academy of Television Arts

and Sciences. Imax is a registered trademark of the Imax Corporation.

The opinions expressed by individuals quoted in articles in InCamera do not necessarily represent those of Kodak Limited, Eastman Kodak

Company or the editors of InCamera. Because of our constant endeavour to improve quality and design, modifi cations may be made to

products from time to time. Details of stock availability and specifi cations given in this publication are subject to change without notice.

“The fi lm begins on a warm

and sunny day with a comparison

between moments of great serenity

(very colorful with a normal

contrast), and moments of high

tension with steadily increasing

contrast,” Gossi describes. “The

tension and anxiety take over on

the night of the police raid, and

the contrast increases at the same

time as the color desaturates. The

darkness and horror are mixed

with the chaos of the city light’s

acid colors. The fi lm ends with the

return to freedom and the bold

colors of summer.

“The photographic journey was

possible thanks to the excellent

exposure latitude of the emulsion

and the palette of the fi lm choices.”


Top: Gherardo Gossi.

Bottom: A scene from Diaz

(credit: Alfredo Falvo/ Agenzia Contrasto)

More magazines by this user
Similar magazines