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James Malamatinas

The Hobbit shooting on RED EPIC - big news?

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The day that film dies is the day when all film shooters strive for the video or reality look. We see this already happening because NFL films is now shooting 16mm film at 120 frames per second which may be a subconcious attempt to achieve the video look or at least an attempt to compete with video cameras.

 

NFL Films shoot at 120 fps for SLOW MOTION. This has already been explained to you.

 

At some point, somewhere along the way, chemical film "died" as the format of choice for still photographers. It happened slowly at first, with the release of some "professional" Canon and Nikon DSLRS. Then the rate at which digital was replacing film increased. And then, at some point, the trendline of film vs digital basically went vertical and chemical film was swept aside very quickly and forever. This is what is happening with cinema, though some people are not able to detect it just yet. Another six months and the trend will be so clear that not even at c.com will anyone legit be able to dispute it. If Disney has 12 films on their slate, and only ONE is scheduled to be shot on chemical film, that tells you something. And this trend will accelerate even faster once Epic drops.

 

Actually, Kodak have recently reported that stills film sales have leveled out and are healthy, particularly in the B&W realm. Hardly the 'death' you describe.

 

As far as Epic goes, it's overdue, and probably not the game-changer that it might once have been. Surely the RED fanboy attitude is unnecessary these days?

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At some point, somewhere along the way, chemical film "died" as the format of choice for still photographers. It happened slowly at first, with the release of some "professional" Canon and Nikon DSLRS.

 

One big reason was that news and magazine photographers could literly phone in their photos from the other side of the planet & meet the deadline for the morning edition.

 

Yeah, they were able already able to wire photos from a scanner, but the film had to be developed and taken to a facility for transmitting.

 

The "death" of chemical film was a victory of convenience over "quality".

We are living in the Age of Commodus.

 

I'm guessing you never had a chemistry set when you were a kid.

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Actually, Kodak have recently reported that stills film sales have leveled out and are healthy, particularly in the B&W realm. Hardly the 'death' you describe.

 

I said: "At some point, somewhere along the way, chemical film "died" as the format of choice for still photographers."

 

Yes, there are still some hobbyists, diehards and B&W shooters who shoot chemical film, but not many left.

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Why don't you face reality, about 2 1/2 years you made a really dumb bet. Why don't you just admit you were talking out of your freckle, pay up Stephen and Max, and we'll move on from there.

 

Well, Keith, if Disney is any indication, then I actually won the bet. If they have 12 films on their slate and only one planned to shoot chemical, then I won by a country mile. I'd like to see some hard numbers. Got any?

 

The bet was, something along the lines of, "In January 2011, will more major feature films currently in production be shooting on digital cinema cameras or chemical film"? Do you have any stats on that?

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I said: "At some point, somewhere along the way, chemical film "died" as the format of choice for still photographers."

 

Yes, there are still some hobbyists, diehards and B&W shooters who shoot chemical film, but not many left.

 

Hobbyists and diehards don't translate into healthy sales, which is what Kodak appear to have. I don't know why you hate film so much, but continually saying 'film is dead' does not make it true.

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Hobbyists and diehards don't translate into healthy sales, which is what Kodak appear to have. I don't know why you hate film so much, but continually saying 'film is dead' does not make it true.

 

Stuart, I don't hate film. Where have I said that? I just prefer digital.

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Well, Keith, if Disney is any indication, then I actually won the bet. If they have 12 films on their slate and only one planned to shoot chemical, then I won by a country mile. I'd like to see some hard numbers. Got any?

 

The bet was, something along the lines of, "In January 2011, will more major feature films currently in production be shooting on digital cinema cameras or chemical film"? Do you have any stats on that?

 

First of all, at least some of those are going to be computer animated, and second, you must have a different definition of "Slated" to the rest of us:

 

Posted by Tom Lowe 08 August 2008 - 11:10 AM

 

Okay, so I have Max and Stephen stepping up to the plate? 20 Bucks USD each? I accept. Payable through paypal, or emailing a $20 amazon gift certificate or something along those lines. Sound good?

 

The wager is, I assert that: "more major-studio features will be shooting digitally by the end of 2010 (Dec 30th) than will be shooting on chemical film." Meaning that in Dec 2010, more major features currently in production at that time will be shooting digital rather than chemical.

 

I'm not sure exactly how we will know for sure (maybe IMDB tech specs?), but actually I would not be surprised if my prediction is a little on the conservative side.

 

Sorry, guess you are going to be suprised, Tom.

I know you've tried to shift the goal posts several times on this, but this is what you said originally. (I've already posted most of this in the RED folder, but oddly, Tom seems to have missed it :) )

 

 

 

From The Chronicles of Tom Lowe:

http://www.cinematography.com/index.php?showtopic=32742&view=findpost&p=245849

 

Actually the whole "Jim to Open Red Ranch" thread is worth a read for fans of Tom Lowe's particular brand of humourous rhetoric....

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Keith, you are proclaiming that I lost the bet? I'll ask again: do you have any hard numbers or data to back that up?

 

Considering the number of productions starting up in 3D, most of which are digital, I would like to see some numbers.

 

Lol the money is of no concern. It's only a small amount. I'm more than happy to pay it if I lose.

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Keith, you are proclaiming that I lost the bet? I'll ask again: do you have any hard numbers or data to back that up?

 

Considering the number of productions starting up in 3D, most of which are digital, I would like to see some numbers.

 

Huh? You were the one who made the bet. Supposing you produce some evidence that you've won, or are going to. Anyway, I'm sure Stephen Williams or Richard Boddington will be only too glad to oblige.

 

Lol the money is of no concern. It's only a small amount. I'm more than happy to pay it if I lose.

Bah. I can see the torn fingernails and bloodstains on the $50 notes from here. I hope the ink on US banknotes doesn't run when they get saturated with teardrops.

I always said getting to to admit you were wrong was never going to be easy.

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Huh? You were the one who made the bet. Supposing you produce some evidence that you've won, or are going to. Anyway, I'm sure Stephen Williams or Richard Boddington will be only too glad to oblige.

 

 

Bah. I can see the torn fingernails and bloodstains on the $50 notes from here. I hope the ink on US banknotes doesn't run when they get saturated with teardrops.

I always said getting to to admit you were wrong was never going to be easy.

 

:lol: You crack me up, man. BTW, where HAS Stephen been hiding lately? You don't think he might have already researched the numbers and is now hiding up in a tree somewhere, do you?

 

I never forget when Jim stepped in and offered to back my side of the bet for $100,000, Stephen's shoes left smoke and rubber burns on the cement as he ran for the hills. smilielol5.gif

 

But it was all in good fun and eventually a good bit of money was donated to a worthy charity.

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Stuart, I don't hate film. Where have I said that?

 

Maybe it's the evident delight with which you proclaim 'film is dead' every time Jim Jannard so much as farts.

 

The fact is that film is still alive and well, and being widely used all over the world. Digital Cameras (and particularly RED) are not 'game-changers' as you're so fond of calling them, because the game remained the same as always - making pictures. For those people making their living in the camera dept, digital cinema initially complicated matters, then offered new ways of doing things, but at no point was there a huge paradigm shift where all the accepted rules went out the window. Those people that think that there was such a shift obviously weren't working in the industry at the time, or have drunk too much of the RED Kool-Aid.

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I looked up some of the bigger recent releases on IMDB to procrastinate working on my digital feature…

 

Tron Legacy - Sony CineAlta F35

Rabbit Hole – Red One

The Narnia movie - Sony CineAlta F23

The Tourist – 35mm

Harry Potter – 35mm

Unstoppable – 35mm

Black Swan – 16mm

Burlesque – 35mm

Love and Other Drugs – 35mm

Due Date – 35mm

The Tempest – 35mm

The Fighter – 35mm

The Garden of Eden – 35mm

All Good Things – 35mm

I Love You Phillip Morris – 35mm

Faster – 35mm

The King’s Speech – 35mm

The Next Three Days – 35mm

Morning Glory – 35mm

Hereafter – 35mm

Skyline – Red One

127 Hours – a whole bunch of different HD cameras

Fair Game – Red One

Saw 3D – HD

 

Of course if you look at the 5,000 Sundance submissions this year, the balance would shift. B)

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Maybe it's the evident delight with which you proclaim 'film is dead' every time Jim Jannard so much as farts.

 

The fact is that film is still alive and well, and being widely used all over the world. Digital Cameras (and particularly RED) are not 'game-changers' as you're so fond of calling them, because the game remained the same as always - making pictures. For those people making their living in the camera dept, digital cinema initially complicated matters, then offered new ways of doing things, but at no point was there a huge paradigm shift where all the accepted rules went out the window. Those people that think that there was such a shift obviously weren't working in the industry at the time, or have drunk too much of the RED Kool-Aid.

 

Your work with the RED camera is hugely impressive, but it is so because you have talent, not because of the camera you choose to use.

 

Come shoot with me for a few days, and I'll show you why I love Red.

 

I'm working on a major feature film right now, and my assignment the other day was to film wild horses running through the grass. The temperatures here are below freezing. But I've been getting up before dawn every morning and stalking these wild horses through the frozen blades of grass in the dark, just to get one certain type of shot. The other morning, I rolled my Red MX for about 1.5 hours, trying to nail this certain type of shot. Wild horses don't like to be filmed, so I was waiting for just the right moment I needed. I don't know how much money or manpower it would have taken to roll a 35mm camera for hours at a time, but it's not the kind of money I have access to, nor would I want to drag a chemical film camera up those hills, with all the film magazines. There is no 10-second "pre-roll" on film, either, which is an option on Red. In addition to all of that, I was able to drive back to my hotel room and look at the clips instantly, and show the director instantly. And damn, at 4.5K res, these images are simply stunning.

 

People like me see film as a barrier that is being knocked down. Other, established shooters might like the idea of having access to an "exclusive" format like 35mm cinema film cameras, and being one of a small number of people trained to use them well. But those days are coming to an end very, very quickly now.

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I looked up some of the bigger recent releases on IMDB to procrastinate working on my digital feature…

 

Tron Legacy - Sony CineAlta F35

Rabbit Hole – Red One

The Narnia movie - Sony CineAlta F23

The Tourist – 35mm

Harry Potter – 35mm

Unstoppable – 35mm

Black Swan – 16mm

Burlesque – 35mm

Love and Other Drugs – 35mm

Due Date – 35mm

The Tempest – 35mm

The Fighter – 35mm

The Garden of Eden – 35mm

All Good Things – 35mm

I Love You Phillip Morris – 35mm

Faster – 35mm

The King’s Speech – 35mm

The Next Three Days – 35mm

Morning Glory – 35mm

Hereafter – 35mm

Skyline – Red One

127 Hours – a whole bunch of different HD cameras

Fair Game – Red One

Saw 3D – HD

 

Of course if you look at the 5,000 Sundance submissions this year, the balance would shift. B)

 

Thanks, Justin. Now keep in mind that the bet was: What percentage of major American films will be actually SHOOTING chemical vs digital on Dec 31 of this year (IE, in the middle of being made, not films that are already finished). I think the numbers will shift when you research it that way.

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Quickly zipping through the list, I was surprised how many movies were shot on film. Ive worked at SP films for about seven years and weve shot 35mm exclusively until about a year ago. Now we shoot almost everything on Phantom or Red. When a film job comes in, its a nice change of pace.

 

Although Im getting used to not using a light meter and taking a million notes for the tests.

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:lol: You crack me up, man. BTW, where HAS Stephen been hiding lately? You don't think he might have already researched the numbers and is now hiding up in a tree somewhere, do you?

He's either busy working or skiing; his facebook page has been quiet as well. HOWEVER I've sent him an email. He says he'll be here shortly.

I never forget when Jim stepped in and offered to back my side of the bet for $100,000, Stephen's shoes left smoke and rubber burns on the cement as he ran for the hills. smilielol5.gif

Codswhallop.

 

First of all JJ was talking in terms of betting a million bucks or more, not 100 G's, but then he suddenly pulled his horns in, and offered to make a donation to a charity instead. He wouldn't be drawn as to why the sudden rubber burn on his part so we can only speculate.

 

Possibly:

 

A. He suddenly realized that we might actually be right, and that you are merely indulging in another uncontrolled posterior conversation, and that while none of us would be in a position to cover a 7-figure bet, there are others who might be, and might also be in a position to predict the outcome with a fair degree of reliability.

 

B. (And/or) he suddenly realized that one should not discuss making 7 figure private bets on a public forum, since this would be highly illegal in most jurisdictions! Losing a 7 figure bet based on the predictions of one Tom Lowe might also make him somewhat subject to needless ridicule.

 

Anyway, yeah, that sounds really cutting considering your originally proposed **$20** stake!

Edited by Keith Walters

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This is the bet:

 

I would be fine with looking at the first six months of releases in 2011 and going off that - since a lot of those releases would have been shot in 2010. But that means I will not collect my 100 smackaroos until mid- or late 2011. :(

 

Major studio films (30M+) released in the first half of 2011. Most of the 3D films currently shooting digitally won't be ready for that timeframe. Films like Tron that are released this month don't count either.

 

 

I never forget when Jim stepped in and offered to back my side of the bet for $100,000, Stephen's shoes left smoke and rubber burns on the cement as he ran for the hills. smilielol5.gif

 

I find it hilarious that Tom seems to be completely unaware of the irony of his post. To a billionaire betting for 100K is about as much as 50$ is to a person with a normal income. And for somone who fancies himself a modern day Nostradamus like Tom, betting only 50$ is definitely NOT putting your money where your mouth is. But then again he always struck me as the kind of guy who, when he has to stop at a red light, turns to his passengers and says: 'Don't worry, it will be green soon'. And when the light does turn green, he goes: 'I told you so!'

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Max, you missed the whole point. The funny part was not how Jim's offer to up the bet would matter to Jim's wallet, but rather, how it caused Stephen to stop taunting me at Reduser about upping the wager. In Vegas terms, I guess you could say Jim called his bluff. :lol:

 

So Max, let me ask you: Do you believe that the majority of +$35 mil films in production as of Dec 31 will be shooting digital or film? Like I've said, I will probably lose this due to the delay in Epic's release, but it might be close.

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The RED itself hasn't killed film, but it sure is a sign of better and better digital cameras to come. Right now the digital's advantages over film are in workflow rather than quality, but the quality will get better. Resolution, skin tones, dynamic range, etc. will improve with time. The new cameras probably won't exactly match film, but like David Mullen said (in some thread here or on Reduser) we always make tradeoffs in the transition to a new medium.

 

However, if 4K DIs are to become more common, I see that as an extra shot in the arm for 35mm, since the Epics might be scarce at first, and the RED's effective resolution is 3.2K (though I'm not sure if that's changed with the MX sensor). The truth is, 35mm still provides more information to work with than any digital camera out right now, so I'm not proclaiming it dead just yet. But we may be at the beginning of the end. Let's see what the state of film origination is in the next 5-10 years.

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NFL Films shoot at 120 fps for SLOW MOTION. This has already been explained to you.

 

 

 

Regardless of the playback speed using 16mm film to shoot football at 120 frames per second not only destroys the film look but makes the footage scream as if it were shot on video. But perhaps this is a subconcious attempt to capture the best of both worlds which is to combine the video goodness of high definition motion fidelity and the higher lattitude which is attributed to film.

 

Again as I will try to explain the conscious reason that a film shooter uses 120 fps capture is for the sole purpose of slow motion playback at 24 frames per second. However subconsciously, the decision to shoot football at 120 fps is an attempt to convert a film camera into a high speed video camera and currently we have the technology to display footage at 120 frames per second.

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... the decision to shoot football at 120 fps is an attempt to convert a film camera into a high speed video camera ....

 

No, it's an attempt -- usually successful -- to record clearly whether the football touched the ground, whether someone's foot crossed one of the lines, etc.

 

 

 

 

-- J.S.

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And not even the 65mm IMAX format was immune from the heat of the competion from high definition video cameras. In response to the high definition's claim of superior motion fidelity, IMAX indroduced the IMAX HD format and showcased 2 movies called Momentum and Soaring over California. Although the IMAX HD format was never sucessfull the mere fact that IMAX directly tried to come up with its own answer to the threat of high definition picture quality is in fact monumental.

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Max, you missed the whole point. The funny part was not how Jim's offer to up the bet would matter to Jim's wallet, but rather, how it caused Stephen to stop taunting me at Reduser about upping the wager. In Vegas terms, I guess you could say Jim called his bluff. :lol:

 

Hmmm. I seem to recall a certain Mr Boddington upping your original TWENTY dollar (not 50) bet to $5,000. I recall a certain amount of evaporated rubber hanging in the air at that point also. If my laptop battery wasn't about to go flat, I'd pull up the quotes out for you.

 

Jim must be so thrilled to have the likes of you, Jan von Krogh, Emanuel, and all the others standing up for what you think he believes in. :rolleyes:

I'm particularly impressed by one gentleman on Reduser, who has a considerably higher post count than Mr Jannard himself.

 

One can only speculate on Mr Jannard's thoughts on all this of course, but it's tempting to imagine they might be along the lines of: "Thank God I can afford my own Airplane. Imagine having to sit next to one of these watermelons for a 10 hour flight...."

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I said: "At some point, somewhere along the way, chemical film "died" as the format of choice for still photographers."

 

& that "choice" has nothing to do with newspapers and magazines being put together on computers

rather than having "camera ready" copy being pasted on boards to be sent to the printers?

 

Might it actually be the format of choice of the editors and publishers?

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