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Ravi Kiran

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About Ravi Kiran

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  1. I recently watched "Little Fugitive," a 1953 film that was an influence on the French New Wave. Morris Engel's handheld, run-and-gun camerawork is simple and beautiful. The doc about Morris Engel on the DVD mentioned a specially designed 35mm camera. Does anyone know anything about the camera or have any pictures of it? I couldn't find any pictures or details about it. I assume that to reduce the size it didn't have a sound-blimp, and maybe it had a smaller magazine?
  2. Some of the crew protocols will probably be easier to change than how to block and shoot actors and extras. What do you do about scenes in which the actors have to be very close to each other? Does this require a fundamental re-thinking of how to shoot such scenes? It seems that creative decisions will be affected, along with overall production logistics.
  3. https://variety.com/2020/film/news/allen-daviau-dead-dies-e-t-empire-of-the-sun-1234582518/ ‘E.T.’ Cinematographer Allen Daviau Dies of COVID-19 at 77 By Dave McNary Cinematographer Allen Daviau, a five-time Academy Award nominee for films including Steven Spielberg’s “E.T. the Extra Terrestrial” and “Empire of the Sun,” died Wednesday in Los Angeles. He was 77. Food editor and writer Colman Andrews wrote on Twitter that Daviau had died of coronavirus at the MPTF hospital. “RIP Allen Daviau, my friend of almost 60 years, cinematographer and bon vivant, five-time Academy Award nominee, dining companion extraordinaire, pure soul, who left us last night at the MPTF Hospital, his longtime home, after contracting COVID-19. Salut, mon ami.” Daviau, a New Orleans native, was nominated for best cinematography Oscars for Spielberg movies “The Color Purple,” “Empire of the Sun,” and “E.T. the Extraterrestrial” — along with two Barry Levinson films, “Avalon” and “Bugsy.” He also shot the Gobi desert sequence for Spielberg’s “Close Encounters of the Third Kind.” Spielberg said in a statement, “In 1968, Allen and I started our careers side by side with the short film Amblin. Allen was a wonderful artist but his warmth and humanity were as powerful as his lens. He was a singular talent and a beautiful human being.” Daviau started out in the profession by shooting pre-MTV-era musicvideos of such groups as the Animals and the Jimi Hendrix Experience. He teamed up with Spielberg in 1968 to make Spielberg’s first 35mm film, the 26-minute “Amblin” with no dialogue, just music and sound effects. In 1983, he talked to American Cinematographer magazine about prepping the “E.T.” shoot, “We sat down with Steven and started screening movies together. This is the best way I know to get started, watching our own movies and other people’s movies, discussing them, evolving the style we want. We watched Night of the Hunter, Alien, Apocalypse Now, Last Tango in Paris — I forget what all.” Daviau described his favorite scene in “E.T.” to the magazine: “It would be the one in which the youngster [Henry Thomas] says, ‘I’m keeping him.’ The little girl [Drew Barrymore] walks forward, there are highlights in E.T.’s eyes, no detail in the face, and the light is yellow, the effect is very much that of a Maxfield Parrish painting.” Daviau’s other credits include John Schlesinger’s “The Falcon and the Snowman,” Albert Brooks’ “Defending Your Life” and Peter Weir’s “Fearless.” One of his final credits was the 2004 “Van Helsing.” Kees van Oostrum, president of the American Society of Cinematographers, also confirmed Daviau’s passing in a statement: “It is with great regret and sadness that I have to announce the passing last night of my friend and a great member of the society, Mr. Allen Daviau, ASC. Allen started his career shooting the early movies of Stephen Spielberg, including Amblin (1968), and went on to an impressive career as a cinematographer with movies that have deeply inspired us all. He was honored with 5 Academy Award nominations, was bestowed our Lifetime Achievement Award in 2007 and won our Outstanding ASC Achievement in Cinematography for Bugsy (1991) and Empire of the Sun (1987). He amassed an impressive body of work: E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982), The Color Purple (1985), and Avalon (1990), just to mention a few.” “Allen was active in our society in many ways like chairing our membership committee for several years,” van Oostrum said. “Also, his commitment to teaching our craft and being very accessible for young cinematographers will forever be engraved in our memories. He will be remembered fondly for his sense of humor, his taste for the best of foods and his laugh that unmistakably marked his presence from far away. “Allen was 77 years old and I am proud that we were able to host him during our 100-year celebration last year. He told me then that it was for him “one of the best of gifts life had to offer.” His smile that evening was affectionate and many of us were able to pay him respect. You will be missed so much, dear Allen,” van Oostrum concluded.
  4. I'm looking at cheese plates on which to mount a V-mount battery plate. Do all battery plates go with all cheese plates? Can I mix and match? I'm looking into getting this cheese plate: https://www.camvate.com/camvate-battery-backboard-cheese-plate-with-360-swivel-15mm-rod-clamp-adapter2193_p2193.html
  5. The cinematographer of Knives Out wants to end the film-vs.-digital debate
  6. With Dolittle I think they grossly overestimated the draw of CGI talking animals. Maybe 20 years ago that in and of itself would have been a wondrous thing to see, but today's audiences routinely see amazing VFX work in movies and TV shows, so talking animals are no longer a big deal. Same with spaceships, dragons, etc., so there has to be something else in the story or characters to attract them. It's not like Dr. Dolittle is especially beloved IP. Audiences have forgotten the Rex Harrison film. The Eddie Murphy versions were hits at the time, but are also essentially forgotten. Does anyone even read the original books these days? Maybe in England? Dr. Dolittle is not a character that has persisted in our collective imaginations like, say, Sherlock Holmes.
  7. It's the Preston Light Ranger, a focus assist tool. Deadline interview with Darius Khondji NoFilm School interview with Khondji
  8. I saw this a few days ago. It's a great film and a great-looking film. Did you have short-pass filters of varying strengths, or did you use one filter the whole time? Would the filter have a similar effect if used on a digital camera? How did you treat the image in the DI?
  9. You could use spherical lenses that breathe and have barrel distortion, and even fake anamorphic flares with fishing line, but I can't imagine a way to fake the stretched bokeh, which, to me, is the biggest tell of anamorphic lenses.
  10. "Anima" is a short film directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, starring and featuring the music of Thom Yorke, and shot by Darius Khondji. It's currently on Netflix, and it had some IMAX screenings last night. I saw it in IMAX at AMC Citywalk. It's a lovely film, with great dance choreography, and of course, Khondji's cinematography is top notch. It was shot in VistaVision and on the Alexa 65. I highly recommend it.
  11. https://www.kodak.com/motion/Blog/Blog_Post/?contentId=4295008512 Dan Mindel on the budgeting for "The Cloverfield Paradox" “We priced the production for digital versus analog film, and the Paramount executives were convinced it was going to be cheaper for us to shoot it digitally. We estimated that we would shoot between 10 to 15,000 ft of 35mm per day. The overall figure for shooting on film actually came out $150,000 cheaper than digital. This was in part due to the fact that film cameras and film lenses are a fraction of the cost of the digital equivalents, which are rented at top dollar. Additionally, with film you don’t have the expense of a DIT or data storage on set. It was a really good exercise in economics and demonstrated that film production can be perfectly reasonable financially.”
  12. Directed by Bi Gan Directors of Photography: Hung-i Yao, David Chizallet, Jinsong Dong The second half of "Long Day's Journey into Night" is an hour-long single-take shot in 3D (post-converted). The movie has a hypnotic and dreamlike feel, and want to see it again. See it in 3D if you can. This article goes into some detail about the making of that shot.
  13. I'm currently working (on the post side) on vertical video for mobile consumption, and while the 9x16 frame is not my favorite compositionally, it works fine for the kind of content we produce and for it's intended destination. The cameras are turned 90 degrees, so everything's shot natively for the format, rather than extracting it from 16x9. I'm against cropping wide footage to vertical dimensions, but I see nothing wrong with native vertical content. Where things get dicey is repurposing wider footage for a vertical frame, or trying to compose for both at the same time during production.
  14. Vertical video is a burgeoning format, with companies like Snapchat producing native vertical video content. It makes sense, since that's how we hold our phones the vast majority of the time.
  15. Do you think DI and digital projection have made 16mm look better on the big screen? I don't recall seeing any 16 to 35mm blow-ups, so I don't know what they generally looked like.
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