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Techniques for Independent Production
The challenges of creating Digital Cinema and other narrative forms.


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Old December 5th, 2002, 11:56 AM   #1
 
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Wonderful example

Go to:

http://www.starwaypictures.com/expired/thefilm.html

and watch "Expired." It's a beautiful little film shot on miniDV that is unbelievable. It shows what the medium is truly capable of.
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Old December 5th, 2002, 12:26 PM   #2
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I almost don't believe that's video.
This is an exceptionaly well done piece. I wish they gave a little more info as to how they achieved the look and what camera they used.
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Old December 5th, 2002, 12:38 PM   #3
 
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I'm waiting now to hear back from the director for the particulars.
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Old December 5th, 2002, 02:17 PM   #4
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I agree. The only thing that I would have liked is more info on the production. Very nicely done.
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Old December 5th, 2002, 04:16 PM   #5
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That was truly amazing work in my eyes, I got a nice feel, the film was great composed. And that it was shot with miniDV, unbelivable...just think about the posibilities.

Jay: Please let me in on the particulars.
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Old December 5th, 2002, 04:53 PM   #6
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To my eye, look like just a bit of color correction and some compositing. The footage still exhibits all the contrast flatness of DV.
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Old December 5th, 2002, 04:57 PM   #7
 
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Fine, Robert. Can you make a film like that?
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Old December 5th, 2002, 05:01 PM   #8
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In the credits, Final Cut Pro is listed. My best guess is it's Magic Bullet http://www.theorphanage.com/ It may have been done with another AE plugin, but it looks like MB to me.

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Old December 5th, 2002, 05:05 PM   #9
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The point to me has less to do with 4:1:1 color space and all that but with the staging, compostion, lighting and so forth. I was fully engaged by the clip even if the story idea is hardly original. Good story telling.
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Old December 5th, 2002, 05:07 PM   #10
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Jay, perhaps what you're really asking is whether I can reproduce the film look. Who would want to make a movie without a story? ;-)
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Old December 5th, 2002, 05:13 PM   #11
 
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No, Robert, I meant what I said. I was taking ALL the elements into consideration.
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Old December 5th, 2002, 05:47 PM   #12
 
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Director's Explanation

Below is what the director, Robert Sanders, had to say about production of his film "Expired." (minus some personal banter)

- - - - - - -

"As far as production particulars, this film really was a low-budget friends and family effort. We shot the film using a Sony PD-150. I think the reason the picture quality turned out so well was due to my lighting designer who worked with me very hard to get it right. I was fortunate enough to get Jim Teiper to come out with his 5-ton grip truck and help us on this show. But, the crew was basically my friends and family (albeit friends and family I always use on my productions...which is great because they're FREE!).

"The production design was another thing that I think helps the look of the film. We were able to use a large vacant room in an office building to build our apartment in. They let us paint the walls and plug up other windows with plywood because we didn't want them showing. We pretty much brought all the furniture from my apartment and my neighbor's apartment to the set. You'll probably be surprised to know that the paintings on the wall were simply ink-jet printouts tiled together on foam-core.

"We didn't use any greenscreen or bluescreen behind the window because I needed the background as reference for the matte paintings. So, that meant we had to "rotoscope" all shots with the window. I used Commotion Pro to do that. Man, that was a lot of freakin' work! The background mattes were created from still photographs I took of a building in downtown LA. The "flying cars" were simple 2D layers animated with a lot of motion blur so you can't see detail or the lack of perspective shift.

"That's pretty much it."
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Old December 6th, 2002, 12:40 AM   #13
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Wow! That's great work.
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Old December 6th, 2002, 09:15 AM   #14
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I just watched the short version and thought it looked super. Nice work. Thanks for the link.
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Old December 6th, 2002, 10:23 AM   #15
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Tools & Talent...

I just watched the clip and was glad to see that these people didn't stifle thier creative ablilty based on common misconceptions of equipment and it's limitations. The clip reminded me of somthing an old crusty recording engineer said to me at an auction in Nashville: I'd gone to look for a new mixing console and was scouring the auction floor when this old guy came over and said "It really doesn't matter what equipment you use, a hit song is a hit song". His point was that a dog on the best equipment is still a dog, and everyone from Johnny Cash to Elvis & the Beatles were recorded on (by todays standards) equipment that was pretty limted, and yet sold millions of records in spite of the equipment and it's shortcomings. I guess my thoughts are that if you have the talent to act, light, direct and edit etc. you can surely overcome some pretty high hurdles. This clip shows what you can do if you "think outside the box" and replace limitations with hard work and talent. It's not film but it's so well done you forget about the meduim and connect to the content. my 2 cents
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