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Daniel D. Teoli Jr.

How many eyes look through the viewfinder?

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OK, on a big film you have the director, DP and cameraman, but who else eyes and critiques the framing before the shoot? 

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Posted (edited)

Anyone, but the sound department. They like to pretend they are recording an on location radio drama. Looking viewfinders or monitors would break that illusion. Thats why they cross themselves and spit whenever they pass video-village and offer a short prayer to Les Paul, to cleanse themselves of the "visions"

Due to union rules, on the "Fast and Furious" movies/film's only the Teamsters were allowed to look in the viewfinders. They would describe the shots using simple Baseball terms and the operator (blindfolded of course) would adjust. To an outsider it sounds ridiculous but its actually a very efficent workflow. It prevents the shot being constrained by arbitrary limitations. (any errors of course are cleaned up in post)

I thought you knew this - its pretty standard workflow. 


Edited by Phil Connolly
fact checking

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Honestly not very many people look through the lens of the camera in 2019, DP, Operator and maybe AC?. Today there is a video village and a lot of people have wireless monitors. So many people are looking at the frame as it's being shot; scriptie, producer (s), director, DP, gaffer, would be the top one's. Then a lot of times actors who are in the scene, but not active at the moment, will sometimes hang out and watch. I've seen audio guys have wireless monitors on them so they can see if the boom is in shot or not. Back before video taps and monitors on set, it was generally just the Operator, DP and Director who physically looked through the camera lens. 

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