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Old April 4th, 2006, 05:14 PM   #1
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Brooklyn,NY
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Keeping boom mics, etc. out of my 16:9 movie

Hi,

This question is for anyone who's ever had boom mics or unwanted people or lights show up in his/her frame.

_______

I shot footage in 16:9 squeeze mode with the DVX and now I'm editing it.

For output, I will eventually export the footage with a 16:9 tag and import it into DVD studio pro. That software will encode the footage with a 16:9 tag. On 16:9 screens it'll show the movie widescreen and on 4:3 screen it will show the footage letterboxed.

But here's the question:

On the 4x3 screens, will the letterboxed image show the entire 16:9 area of the footage or will it show the 14:9 action safe area of the footage that I would expect to see on the 16:9 screen?

I assume I'm right thinking that the 16:9 screens will show the 14:9 area of the footage (the part within the action safe lines), right?

Here's why this quesiton is important to me:

There are times when the boom mic or a light creeps into the frame, but usually it's *outside* the action safe lines. I'll have no problem showing that on a 16:9 widescreen TV. If the boom's outside the action safe, it won't show.

But obviously, if the entire 16:9 image shows up on a letterboxed version , then the boom mic errors will show up.

The solution would be to crop the image down to the action safe lines in my editor before output. I actually usually do this for all my 4x3 projects, because while TVs don't usually show stuff outside the action safe lines, DVD players on Computers show everything.
Have you ever rented a movie and watched it on your computer and suddenly noticed a boom mic here and there that wasn't seen on your tv? Well, I think that's what the problem is.

Now the other part of this question has to do with the sides of the frame, cuz I also have boom mic issues there. So I might want to crop that as well.
My main concern with cropping the sides, however, is that this movie is going to show off a digital projector in a theater.

I'm hoping that that the projector will display just the 14:9 area of the footage that I would expect to see on a widescreen TV and not the whole DV image. Think it will? Otherwise, people will end up seeing a big rectangle on screen, which would be pretty weird.

Thanks for reading

p.s. yes, I realize I wouldn't have these issues if I simply shot in 4x3 and cropped to 16:9 in post
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Jim McDougal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 5th, 2006, 10:40 AM   #2
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Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Albany, NY 12210
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As annoying as it is, it's really not too hard to eliminate boom mics and often shadows from a static shot. Just make a screen grab from a frame that doesn't have the mic, cut it out in Photoshop and overlay that piece over the footage as mask. I'd rather go through that and have good sound than force the sound guy to boom from eight feet away, actually. Now if you're panning or the talent walks across that portion of the frame where the shadow is, you're screwed.

To answer your question though, the letterboxed image should not show the underscan area. I'm told that widescreen TVs often do though.
Marco Leavitt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 5th, 2006, 01:03 PM   #3
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Join Date: Feb 2004
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marco Leavitt
Just make a screen grab from a frame that doesn't have the mic, cut it out in Photoshop and overlay that piece over the footage as mask.
If you do that, just remember to add the grain back in.
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