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Mark Allen

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About Mark Allen

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    Director
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    Los Angeles

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    http://www.markallen.net
  1. Suddenly lost our AC, need someone else. Camera is an F900 with zeiss lenses. Please message me here if you have a high recommendation and info or if you want to suggest yourself. I will forward you to the DP, thank you.
  2. Lucas is often cited as being a genuis for keeping his merchandising rights. However, in an interview he mentioned that all he wanted was control over how the posters looked because he really didn't like how American Graffiti was marketed. Back then, the world of merchandising from movies wasn't really recognized, so to get the right to posters and such - he got the rights to merchandising. An industry was then redefined. As for YouTube. They are definitely trying to cover themselves - but they are also starting to now distirbute user material at their own discression. YouTube is the number one cellphone channel, for example. Expect more and more distribution as they have now amassed an enormous content library. You need to think twice about trying to start your own channel there. Make sure you understand what rights you are giving away. It's a catch 22. YouTube can give you a huge audience. bliptv.com on the other hand is not after your rights and you can pull your content at anytime. But they don't have a built in referencing audience.
  3. It's been years since all of my regular DP's have been booked all at once, so it is time to add someone new to my call list. I have a shoot in a week and a half. It will be very much like the other Sebastian stuff on my reels... most like Discovery and Corridors: www.markallen.net/movies.html Not sure what we will shoot on yet - possibly the SPX900. This one will be brighter probably than the ones I mentioned. I am looking for a DP to step in for this shoot. Know that I control the camera placement and push the lighting direction very much and need a DP who considers this an asset - so that they can take it even further and is not annoyed by it feeling like I am stepping on their toes. I don't operate the camera 98% of the time. We shoot at a quick pace with a small crew (DP, Gaffer, Grip, PA who does audio). Everything but Least Likely on my movies page was shot like this averaging 10 minutes of finished runtime per day. This particular job is unusual in that we have 3 days to do this. If you're interested and available (Los Angeles, May 5,6,7), please click on my name here and send me an email with a link to your online reel. Thank you, I look forward to enjoying your work. Thank you.
  4. So, I have to bid an HD multicamera concert shoot this weekend... nice that I find this out after the rental houses close. :) I do NOT need to live switch - the switching can/will all be done in post. I WOULD need to monitor all the camera feeds from outside of the theater though. Does anyone have any experience putting one of these things together and can share some info like... about what it costs to do this... is it just the usual gear plus some really long cables and monitors to watch them? I'm not even sure of what to ask beyond that at this point.
  5. One thing that a movie like 300 points out with exageration which I think is something which is not much discussed is the gray area between cinematographer and production designer/art director. Once I sat reviewing reels with a producer who was feeling verbal and was making comments on what he liked about the cinematographer's work. I didn't say anything just listened. I would say that 70% of his comments were really about the art direction. I see this time and time again. He would talk about how good the distressed texture on the wall looked. How the red on the out fit made the character stand out so perfect from the mostly gray set. It's true, you can do much with light and how you capture these things, but I think really that a great production designer / art director would be a cinematographer's best ally. Ideally everyone works together as part of a team to make this all work together. I know myself when I do green screen stuff, the more we know what the final will look like, the better equiped the DP will be to light the characters such that they fit into the scene. But then... who made the image beautiful? The artist who did the world? The DP who lit the actor? The Director? Maybe the actor just because they're the most beautiful piece of art in the shot. It's really impossible to say. It's the synergy which I think can pay off in the long run. But I think being aware of the reliance of everyone on eachother can really help get toa positive end result. All this is probably very obvious for people who have worked on a few movies. But I can not emphasize enough how NOT obvious it is for people who have worked on many movies but just not from a hands-on involvement.
  6. I think anyone who has worked with professional cameras understand how they don't come with all the accessories. The RED is a pro camera. People coming from the world of the DV revolution would, perhaps be a little shocked. Wait two years, there will be some consumer options which will shock everyone. Anyone who actually "drank the Kool-Aid" and put in an order should be very happy since they have now a 110% rebate offer to give up their reservation. Or, they can finish their sale and resell it pretty easily (perhaps making profit off that $2,500 discount). I ordered the camera the first day it was available simply because most people said a camera like that could not exist at that price. I can't afford film for most of my projects and It hurts me to struggle with some of the limitations of the HVX200 and other cameras I use. Even if I hadn't reserved one, I'd be thrilled that there would be a rentalbe option like the RED. Even if I never rented one, I would be happy that someone is setting a all new price target for that level of quality. Being a reserver though (who has avoided these forums for quite a while) I now look at things one month from NAB and think "Wow... they actually did it. Neat." Coming within $200 of a promised price even. That's pretty remarkable if you think about it. I will tell you the things I really want to see though.... 1. More footage - a wider range of environments and conditions. 2. The Warranty and Repair Policy. 3. My next project shot with this camera. 3 isn't likely to happen since it will be happening before NAB... ah... one more rental....
  7. My review: I was prepared to hate it and was pleasantly surprised. I'm not really going to review the plot because this is a cinematography forum. GREEN SCREEN: I think of the "green screen" movies this is the best so far (including the star wars ones). First off, I suspect the director was good at giving the actors a sense of where they are and what is going on in addition to where they are in the story which makes a big difference too. From a Visual Effects point of view, I can't underscore the importance that many of of the sets were live and most often the blue screen was used for the larger landscapes and skies rather than entire sets (which has been most filmmaker's inclination... it makes a huge difference. The abs were apparently not done in post. :) FIGHTING: Visually - I thought the fighting scenes were really fantastic. It is what I would lean towards if given this type of situation. It was a nice balance of watching the grace of the motion and then seeing the specific of what is actually going on. The gore was pretty intense, but so comic-book styled that it wasn't terribly offensive. I didn't squeam and I'm a guy who can't sit still for a movie like Hostel (which I couldn't get through). People could debate the morality of which is better for hours I'm sure. Limbs could be done by roto'ing out the existing limb and putting in a CG limb. All of this stuff was excessively planned and rehearsed. If a blade has to go through an arm, you can be sure the blade was not there originally... or the arm was not. COMPARED TO THE COMIC...errr GRAPHIC NOVEL: I was thinking while watching the movie "Wow, they probably plucked this right from the pages of the book." However, after I saw the movie, I looked at the books and I must commend the filmmakers because I think they really took it way beyond the book. The level of aesthetic beauty in the movie is all in it's own. While definitely inspired by the book as conceptual art, the realization of it is a huge compliment to all the key artists involved across the board. I hope they receive many production design awards.
  8. Thank you! Sounds perfect, will look into that. Will definitel get an experienced operator. If anyone reading this has Las Vegas recommendations for me - send me a private message.
  9. Supply and Demand. Genesis are very expensive because there are so few of them. Red supplies will also be very low at first - so I think for the first couple months if you are looking to rent a RED, you'll be looking at prices which compete with what it is competing against - The Genesis, the D20. As more and more cameras come into the market towards October I would imagine that the prices being discussed here (500 range) will emerge. Does this assessment sound realistic?
  10. I'm almost embarassed to ask this... What is the advantage of the EVF over the LCD? I'm almost embarassed to ask this... but... I know that even on rare occasion when I'm having to operate I always use the LCD these days because it lets me stay aware peripherally of what is going on around me.... is it just that most people prefer having the more focused (and probably therefore accurate) view?
  11. The SDX900 was on the maybe list... so I think the fact that this is coming up a lot means I need to take a closer look at it. I was leaning towards HVX because I will have to have one that weekend for the greenscreen shoot anyway. You need the extra mbs for GS. But it sounds like life would be a lot easier for the 2nd day with SDX.... I'm curious about the synching as well. Since I don't need to swtich live can I just synch in post or will it drift. I'm doing only a six minute song - not the whole concert.
  12. We have to have the HVX for one camera the day before. (It's Greenscreen and I'v efound the HVX does good Greenscreen short of full HD). Would the HVX cut in with the DVX100s well? Thanks.
  13. First off - I'm a director/producer yet I'm stuck trying to make a budget for a shoot I will most likely be doing next month which will involve a jib arm because it's a concert shoot. I don't normally do live events, so this is new territory for me. Can anyone suggest what type of rig i should be looking at renting and how many people it would take to safely operate it? Too vague? I know... well... I'm guesing it's a 1000 seat theater, I'm guessing I will have space in the aisles or removed seats to place the base. I'm guessing we'll need something which can sweep over the audience as well as get back behind the performer to show the audience. Is there some standard piece of equipment people use for this kind of thing? I'm saying all I know at this point. initial budgets are like this... you get no information and are expected to figure out somethng that would work. Thanks.
  14. Looks like I'll be shooting a Live Concert with 3 cameras. We'll get two or three passes pre-show and then one shot with a live audeince. I've been using the HVX camera a great deal. Is there any reason to think it would not work well in this case? I've also always used it with the P2 (or firestore or direct to disk), but if memory serves - it can read to tape as well, right? Is the quality on tape reasonable? If I'm shooting to tape, should I consider another camera altogether? It's all rental so if there is a reasonable option, I can consider it. F900's probably are out of range for both rental and post purposes. We are most likely finishing only to standard def. anyway.
  15. When I was looking into them as a keylight source I was told that the amount of light I would need coming out of them would probably burn the lantern. Also - I need something that can be on longer that 3 hours without burning out which i was warned the daylight fotofloods would. So far.... this is my mental summary.... Lowell ego light looks great - but I need more light. Building my own light is probably beyond my skill set. The savage lights are in the lead because they're probably nearly as cheap as it would be for me to build my own. I am very curious to know the quality of the build and how it compares to other lights like kinoflo, rifa, spiderlite. The other more expensive options are: rifa, spiderlight, bowen tri-light. but the savage (with the link provided in an earlier post) is definitely the price to beat. I just wish someone local had them on display. I am curoius about the difference between the open face one and the boxed one.... not sure if there is an advantage to the longer tubed light vs. the cluster of smaller ones in the lightbox. Thoughts are always apprecaited.
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