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The Right Stock

Josh Hill

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So spring break is coming up and I'm going to embark on a 3-4 minute 16mm short to be transferred to MiniDV, and then a possible film print if everything turns out okay.


My camera/lighting setup is this:


CP16R/A (156 degree shutter)

Angenieux 10-150mm

2 1k Par64 cans

1 Arri 650 Fresnel

1 Arri 300 Fresnel


I may end up renting a flag/scrim set, but I don't want to spend too much on rental, since it's nothing big. I hope to use as much sunlight as possible (through windows, and of course for the outdoor scenes) but I don't know if the weather will be permitting (it's quite overcast now, but I still have a little over a week to clear things up).


My concern, because I have no experience with film stock, is what would be the best to use. I'm going with tungsten stock so that I can filter to shoot in daylight (or not filter it at all of the blue-ish look which I think may actually look good for this project), but my concern is contrast and sharpness.


I was thinking originally about shooting 7217, but I was worried it may be a little too fast for what I need, and wasn't sure about how it handles contrast (I have one scene in mind that needs to be very contrasty). 7212 interested me because it is sharp and I shouldn't have too much of a problem lighting if I didn't have enough sunlight, and would be slower for the exterior scenes. I'm going to get 6-800 feet of short ends from filmemporium.com and shoot over one or two days (depending). Are there any other suggestions for filmstock?


Will the sharpness of 7212 be better for me since I know I'm using an inherently soft lens? How well do these stocks handle sunlight? If I shoot unfiltered will it look horribly blue, or just slightly so?


www.movielab.com is going to be my lab/telecine since they have the best prices that I could find. I'm going to get two copies of on miniDV, one with Keycode/timecode burnt in and one without (so that if I do decide to make a print I can have the burn in for the negative cutter).


Anything else I should think about regarding stock and such?





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What days are you shooting Josh? Is it during SXSW? If I'm in town I'd be willing to help ya. I've got a fresh short end of 7205 you can have too.


You should consider how many day versus night scenes you have. If it is a lot of Day int and ext you might just try shooting everything on 250D.


The 7212 is a great stock and very sharp. I haven't shot the '17 yet. Whatever stock you use, you will be able to make it as contrasty as you need in telecine. With any tungsten stock if you don't use the 85 it will be very blue. Not anything uncorrectable in telecine.

Edited by J. Lamar King
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Usually a cinematographer picks a film stock first

And then sees how much equipment they'll need to work with said stock...


In your case you've got the equipment picked out already

So you need a stock that can work with the equipment you have...


If I were you (I find myself using this phrase too ofter--I hate it! :angry: )

Anyways I'd would go to the location with a lightmeter and take readings

If possible do a test or pre-light and see how much light you would need

And then choose the stock (or speed) that best helps you get the look you're after.


I find that most Kodak Vision 2 stocks are pretty sharp (they're quite amazing :) )

The 7217 is really good (very sharp) and has alot of latitude to play with.


I'd also remember the color balance issue as well

(maybe a Daylight stock might be easier to work with...7205)



Anyways Good Luck

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Guest jeremy edge

hey could you pm me after you do your session at movie lab? I've been thinking of using them.im curios how the results are.


I'm going to shoot 5 rolls of vision 2 200t I think in 2 weeks.Taking a trip to NYC.It seems a lot of stuff thats on tv is shot with vision 2.It must be pretty good! I plan on using a filter for daylight becuase my interior shots will be more light limited.rather lose the light outside where light is plentiful than putting a filter on indoors.

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  • 4 weeks later...
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Unfortunately, do to actor/crew schedule restraints (since we are all students) the production had to be postponed. Besides spring break, midterms, and theatre productions I could not get any two people together at one time to shoot.


It's hard to get people to commit when they aren't getting paid.


But I'll be sure to post what I think of Movielab when I do get this film shot (I'm not going to let a thousand feet of perfectly good film go to waste).


I'll keep you posted.

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MovieLab can't be too shabby. I believe they did one of the Star Trek movies (III?) back in the '80s. This is sort of a generalization, but if they're good enough to do a major motion picture, they must adhere to pretty stringent standards and quality control. That's like asking someone to tell you how their results are using Technicolor or if Consolidated Film Industries has any problems with scratches.



~Karl Borowski

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