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Alex Anstey

"The cinematographer of Knives Out wants to end the film-vs.-digital debate”

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Justin, my bad haha. It is more of a math problem and a science project - cinematography is. It is a shame. Being a cinematographer was a respectable position where a lot testing etc was involved. To achieve a look, people resort to LUTS and other digital tricks to turn, otherwise flat and uninteresting photography, into a "masterpiece." It just doesn't sit right with me. For example, my workflow is to get a low con print and scan the print because I do not want any flexibility in post and also to preserve a traditional film look that was normal in the 90's and early 2000's. 

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They did. Fotokem processes it in their soup for the effect - assuming ECN is involved along with printing a tad lighter. It works wonderfully to be honest. One light prints to gray chart is what I need 99 percent of the time as I achieve everything that I can in camera without any digital tricks.

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18 hours ago, Stephen Perera said:

The Eddy - laughable at how ABSOLUTELY DIFFERENT episodes 1 an 2 look to the rest of the episodes......like night and day....and in my opinion....how 'amateur' the other episodes look in comparison

Not add to the debate but I find that film USUALLY, most of the time, adds so much production value. I always cringe when certain TV series switch from film to digital, the difference is glaring and it just immediately looks cheaper. 

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Posted (edited)
14 hours ago, Justin Hayward said:

I didn’t say some of them get crappy images... Grieg Fraser did.😊 It’s funny though, I’m old enough to remember a time when I was afraid to shoot video. Film was easy. As long as you have the right ASA in your light meter, the rest was just taste. Then these big fat HD cameras came along with all their stupid menus and settings... made my brain hurt.😄

Yes you could say film is for beginners ,and as such the young folk are embracing it .. But as they move up and gain knowledge and  confidence .. like Roger Deakins and John Lindley (the best Team Deakins pod cast so far)..  they can then  move safely over to Digital ,at the peak of their careers .. I did this too of course .. and Im waiting for Rogers call... 

Edited by Robin R Probyn

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15 hours ago, Mark Kenfield said:

Huh? Which version of their podcast have you been listening to? 🤔 A different one than me I guess. 
 

Their episode with Bev Wood they did basically nothing other than wax lyrical on film and its process. Indeed that episode is one of the most in-depth discussions of the analog process that I’ve ever heard anywhere. 
 

The only thing I’ve heard them steer away from is the “Film vs. Digital” debate, which they seem pretty sick of talking about. 
 

They’ve also made it pretty clear that their hesitancy around shooting film these days, relates to serious problems they’ve had with some of the processing on their more recent film jobs. And not with shooting film itself. 
 

 

Roger seems to say (if I remember correctly) that he actually rarely had issues with processing actually. 

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3 minutes ago, Manu Delpech said:

Roger seems to say (if I remember correctly) that he actually rarely had issues with processing actually. 

I agree...anyway, all I'm saying is if the superstars people try and emulate and look up to care about their industry and not just corporate sponsorship pay-checks then they should support and promote film as well as their beloved new digital cameras so that nobody's like me don't get stuck with having to shoot motion with DSLRs in the future.......there's another big fish that's Sony this and Sony that....well as far as Im concerned, as a cinema lover your 'magic hour in every scene in every film' just looks so fake with your digital Sony.....is my opinion....hahaha sorry but its true......

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Posted (edited)
9 minutes ago, Stephen Perera said:

I agree...anyway, all I'm saying is if the superstars people try and emulate and look up to care about their industry and not just corporate sponsorship pay-checks then they should support and promote film as well as their beloved new digital cameras so that nobody's like me don't get stuck with having to shoot motion with DSLRs in the future.......there's another big fish that's Sony this and Sony that....well as far as Im concerned, as a cinema lover your 'magic hour in every scene in every film' just looks so fake with your digital Sony.....is my opinion....hahaha sorry but its true......

So you are publicly saying that Roger Deakins is getting paid by Arri, to sing the praises of Arri cameras .. rather than it being his own personal preference to shoot Arri digitally .. I would very much doubt that ..he might sue you 🙂  your whole premise is sort of odd...  film is dying because the big dogs are all on payola ...  wow thats clutching at straws ..

Edited by Robin R Probyn
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1 minute ago, Robin R Probyn said:

So you are publicly saying that Roger Deakins is getting paid by Arri, to sing the praises of Arri cameras .. rather than it being his own personal preference to shoot Arri digitally .. I would very much doubt that ..he might sue you 🙂  your whole premise is sort of odd...  film is dying because the big dogs are all on payola ...  wow thats clutching at straws ..

hahaha who the f••k am I in the big picture hahahah come on.....who gives a s**t what I think or say......and have I directly said what you say I said? hahaha this is ridiculous now.....

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@Giray Izcan I'm surprised by you saying most folks want to shoot digital? I so often read about this or that film where the DP and director had planned to shoot film and a producer shot it down or whatnot and there are so many big time DPs who are very clear that they prefer film by far. Several big time advocates (though they are open to digital of course and know they can do great work digitally as well) are Prieto, Sandgren, Van Hoytema, Kaminski, Elswit, Mindel, and more. 

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Quite a few DPs I talk to usually say that they would love to shoot on film but they rarely get the chance. The other day I talked to a guy who works in commercials and he said for a lot of clients the buzz word is "resolution" and they would never ever consider analog film. Then there are those guys working in corporate or documentary who absolutely hate the idea of film simply because it would make their job much more difficult. So much so that I had one person get seriously angry when I mentioned analog film. True story.

This was not Robin, by the way. Although he is usually the first one to predict the death of film every time this subject comes up on this forum. Without fail 😉

As long as film manufacturers can make a profit, there will be film available. It's that simple.

 

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10 minutes ago, Uli Meyer said:

Quite a few DPs I talk to usually say that they would love to shoot on film but they rarely get the chance. The other day I talked to a guy who works in commercials and he said for a lot of clients the buzz word is "resolution" and they would never ever consider analog film. Then there are those guys working in corporate or documentary who absolutely hate the idea of film simply because it would make their job much more difficult. So much so that I had one person get seriously angry when I mentioned analog film. True story.

This was not Robin, by the way. Although he is usually the first one to predict the death of film every time this subject comes up on this forum. Without fail 😉

As long as film manufacturers can make a profit, there will be film available. It's that simple.

 

haha yes at least Im consistent .. but what you said is absolutely what I would agree with .. always said so .. as long as it makes money anything will survive ..  I have only ever put forward my opinion that unfortunately those days are numbered for film .. my "constant " gripe, is the notion that film is intrinsically a superior format to the point where its the most important ingredient ,it that wild mix that makes a great film.. which of course it isn't ..  I mean , I turned down being a guest on Rogers pod cast to avoid the all the down arrows I would get on my posts ..  ..

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Posted (edited)

"The days have been numbered for film" since 2012. I remember, and it's always funny to watch interviews from back then of directors or DPs saying the same thing (though they loved film already back then), and it's more alive than ever. And thank god it is. 

 

Then again, I'm never sure when Robin is being serious, if ever. 

Edited by Manu Delpech
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Posted (edited)

.......and by sheer coincidence the point I put forward about always wanting the film option to be available (I'm hardly expressing anything that hasn't been said by countless people)......is what Linus Sandgren, film cinematographer par excellence, speaks in the latest Team Deakins podcast:

https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/linus-sandgren-cinematographer/id1510638084?i=1000487915125

....and Deakins himself states he loves film and certainly doesn't rule out shooting it again....which is great and the kind of thing we need to hear for the benefit of nobodies like me who want to shoot 16mm film by choice.....

Edited by Stephen Perera
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On 8/12/2020 at 5:46 PM, Stephen Perera said:

I agree...anyway, all I'm saying is if the superstars people try and emulate and look up to care about their industry and not just corporate sponsorship pay-checks then they should support and promote film as well as their beloved new digital cameras so that nobody's like me don't get stuck with having to shoot motion with DSLRs in the future.......there's another big fish that's Sony this and Sony that....well as far as Im concerned, as a cinema lover your 'magic hour in every scene in every film' just looks so fake with your digital Sony.....is my opinion....hahaha sorry but its true......

Without evidence or proof your basically talking out of your arse. No offence intended. Would an artist, a wanky word but a word that describes someone such as Roger Deakins take a pay check to shoot on an ALEXA? Would Christoper Nolan take a pay check from Kodak and IMAX to shoot on film? The latter is far more likely seeing how far film has fallen. 

Will digital be able to ‘beat’ film? Yes. People are looking at digital like it’s a medium, it’s not. It’s just a series of switches that are getting smaller and smaller and faster and faster. People seem to look at digital in a way that it lacks art. It doesn’t look ‘good’. Well that’s entirely the persons fault. Unlike film which is a negative that has been designed by someone else a digital file entirely comprised of 1’s and 0’s that are entirely up to your interpretation to present in whatever form you wish. Nowadays the 1 and the 0 can be the same at the same time. Yet people still feel like they are stuck with a ‘bad’ digital image. The truth is we are just all too lazy to learn how to fix it. 

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Posted (edited)
8 minutes ago, Gabriel Devereux said:

Without evidence or proof your basically talking out of your arse.

this looks a little like a sales video, don't you think? Not that I think there is anything wrong with this but to say that someone wouldn't accept a paycheck because the person is an artist is an odd statement.

 

Edited by Uli Meyer
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Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, Gabriel Devereux said:

Without evidence or proof your basically talking out of your arse. No offence intended. Would an artist, a wanky word but a word that describes someone such as Roger Deakins take a pay check to shoot on an ALEXA? Would Christoper Nolan take a pay check from Kodak and IMAX to shoot on film? The latter is far more likely seeing how far film has fallen. 

Will digital be able to ‘beat’ film? Yes. People are looking at digital like it’s a medium, it’s not. It’s just a series of switches that are getting smaller and smaller and faster and faster. People seem to look at digital in a way that it lacks art. It doesn’t look ‘good’. Well that’s entirely the persons fault. Unlike film which is a negative that has been designed by someone else a digital file entirely comprised of 1’s and 0’s that are entirely up to your interpretation to present in whatever form you wish. Nowadays the 1 and the 0 can be the same at the same time. Yet people still feel like they are stuck with a ‘bad’ digital image. The truth is we are just all too lazy to learn how to fix it. 

I'm simply giving my opinion which is what forums are all about......I will ignore your aggressive reply.......no offence intended......

Edited by Stephen Perera
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57 minutes ago, Stephen Perera said:

I'm simply giving my opinion which is what forums are all about......I will ignore your aggressive reply.......no offence intended......

 

59 minutes ago, Uli Meyer said:

this looks a little like a sales video, don't you think? Not that I think there is anything wrong with this but to say that someone wouldn't accept a paycheck because the person is an artist is an odd statement.

 

I'm sorry if I seemed aggressive. I just feel that making a statement such as that over a suspicion probably isn't the best idea. I'm not sure how things work in other cultures entirely but I know in mine if one where to be endorsed by a company or brand monetarily and continuously recommend them WHILE being considered one of the BEST in the field without disclosing said deal would be incredibly poor form and even possibly illegal? Theres nothing wrong with an artist taking a pay check, the more the better! However something of this nature is something I at least frown upon and wouldn't be too thrilled about if true. 

Maybe the man just prefers the Alexa? By all means the film vs digital debate is interesting! I jump from side to side daily, each day very firm on my outlook however by tomorrow it will be different! That's the nature of the beast and it's fun to discuss! However I dislike to see casual defamation of character with no supporting evidence! Other than a video of Roger liking the camera. Which I can pull a Christopher Nolan, Linus Sandgren, Damien Chazelle etc video, interview etc of them saying the same thing about Kodak so on. I hope we are artists and scientists on this forum, not conspiracy theorists! 

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1 hour ago, Uli Meyer said:

this looks a little like a sales video, don't you think? Not that I think there is anything wrong with this but to say that someone wouldn't accept a paycheck because the person is an artist is an odd statement.

 

yes I saw this and enjoyed the video.....I have many Arri tungsten lights, really cool vintage case for them too and even an L7-C LED with a custom made case too so I'm a fan......I chose Aaton as my 16mm camera though over their SRs......and I LOVE the Team Deakins podcast and I subscribe to it........I'm a fan of the man.....but I think it would be great if he also promoted film not just the Arri LF camera......and to conclude......we are all accepting pay checks as artists in here are we not? haha I certainly am as a designer/photographer (but I shoot film as thats what you get with me....)

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Posted (edited)
3 minutes ago, Gabriel Devereux said:

 

I'm sorry if I seemed aggressive. I just feel that making a statement such as that over a suspicion probably isn't the best idea. I'm not sure how things work in other cultures entirely but I know in mine if one where to be endorsed by a company or brand monetarily and continuously recommend them WHILE being considered one of the BEST in the field without disclosing said deal would be incredibly poor form and even possibly illegal? Theres nothing wrong with an artist taking a pay check, the more the better! However something of this nature is something I at least frown upon and wouldn't be too thrilled about if true. 

Maybe the man just prefers the Alexa? By all means the film vs digital debate is interesting! I jump from side to side daily, each day very firm on my outlook however by tomorrow it will be different! That's the nature of the beast and it's fun to discuss! However I dislike to see casual defamation of character with no supporting evidence! Other than a video of Roger liking the camera. Which I can pull a Christopher Nolan, Linus Sandgren, Damien Chazelle etc video, interview etc of them saying the same thing about Kodak so on. I hope we are artists and scientists on this forum, not conspiracy theorists! 

no worries...you are expressing your opinion too....and I DO speak out of my ass as we all do hahah defamation of character? surely not......Quentin tarantino dislikes him maybe?? and its mutual from what I assume on the Linus Sandgren podcast....was he referring to Tarantino when he said what he said? who knows......did he counter-attack what Tarantino said about him that he "just doesn't want to light" or words to that effect?

Edited by Stephen Perera

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1 hour ago, Uli Meyer said:

this looks a little like a sales video, don't you think? Not that I think there is anything wrong with this but to say that someone wouldn't accept a paycheck because the person is an artist is an odd statement.

 

But who is saying he got paid for this .. I very much doubt it ..   he's definitely a fan of the Arri cxamerams  and one set of lenses .. thats his preference .. but to infer someone got paid without proof is a bit off I think .. 

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On 8/12/2020 at 8:46 AM, Stephen Perera said:

I agree...anyway, all I'm saying is if the superstars people try and emulate and look up to care about their industry and not just corporate sponsorship pay-checks then they should support and promote film as well as their beloved new digital cameras so that nobody's like me don't get stuck with having to shoot motion with DSLRs in the future.......there's another big fish that's Sony this and Sony that....well as far as Im concerned, as a cinema lover your 'magic hour in every scene in every film' just looks so fake with your digital Sony.....is my opinion....hahaha sorry but its true......

I don't move in the exalted circles that Roger Deakins et. al do, but I know enough about them to say that you are misunderstanding how it works.  Big name DPs are courted, wined & dined, given access to prototype cameras, given input into R&D, and all kinds of flattery, but they are not paid.

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Just now, Stuart Brereton said:

I don't move in the exalted circles that Roger Deakins et. al do, but I know enough about them to say that you are misunderstanding how it works.  Big name DPs are courted, wined & dined, given access to prototype cameras, given input into R&D, and any and all kinds of flattery, but they are not paid.

I'm sure this is the case Stuart.....appreciate the info......I just don't want to be stuck with ONLY digital in the future cos the big name DPs, Directors and Producers didn't care for the uniqueness of film....it's like losing homemade traditional cooking passed down through generations in favour of JUST supermarket off-the-shelf stuff...the joy is in the preparation, attention to detail, craft, sweat, time needed and presentation on the plate for the family to enjoy.....surely?

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16 minutes ago, Robin R Probyn said:

But who is saying he got paid for this .. I very much doubt it ..   he's definitely a fan of the Arri cxamerams  and one set of lenses .. thats his preference .. but to infer someone got paid without proof is a bit off I think .. 

I'm not saying that he got paid for this, I wouldn't know. But it is clear that he's got a relationship with ARRI that is beneficial for both of them. And it probably looks like what Stuart said. The "accepting payment as an artist" comment was meant to be a general one.

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2 hours ago, Stephen Perera said:

I'm sure this is the case Stuart.....appreciate the info......I just don't want to be stuck with ONLY digital in the future cos the big name DPs, Directors and Producers didn't care for the uniqueness of film....it's like losing homemade traditional cooking passed down through generations in favour of JUST supermarket off-the-shelf stuff...the joy is in the preparation, attention to detail, craft, sweat, time needed and presentation on the plate for the family to enjoy.....surely?

I enjoy shooting film too, Stephen. I hope it continues to be available, and it probably will be, as long as it stays profitable. However, I don't think you can assign responsibility for the continued use of film to a few big name directors and DPs. It's not their job to try to influence market forces, and they are often beholden to the demands of producers, just as everyone else is. To use the Vinyl/CD analogy, Vinyl isn't still available because of the actions of big name artists, it's because of grassroots support from independent artists, record stores and DJs. If you want to film to endure, then the best thing you can do is keep using it.

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