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Old January 30th, 2002, 12:09 PM   #1
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How do you create a cine film look from video?

I need to know how to make a cine film look from video.

Basically these shots will be used as a flashback, when the character was younger (as shot on an old cine camera). Cutting between now, and the past.

What type of filters would you suggest to use in post production (scratch look, hue, saturation, cut out frames etc), or that matter on the camera?

Any other tips to create this effect would be handy.

I will be using Premiere 6, Photo Shop 5.5, Canon XL1 and Sony TRV900
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Old January 31st, 2002, 01:22 AM   #2
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Well you could start out by making everything run at 15 frames per second and giving it a monochrome sepia tint. As far as filters I would recommend something that has old nicks and scratches, but that only applies if you are assuming the "film" has been poorly stored and cared for. Film can run in perfect conditions with nary a mark for decades and decades --- that meaning tens of thousands of runs if treated by someone who knows how to handle film. But what I WOULD definitely recommend is something that creates a slight "flicker" to the video.

I don't know the names of any filters that do these things, but they are definitely out there. Please post if you find any that do the flicker/scratch thing well.

Also, if your "film" is going to be in poor shape, delete groups of four or five frames here and there to simulate "missing frames" where the film broke and was spliced back together.
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Old January 31st, 2002, 02:23 PM   #3
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All very good information, cheers Joe.

But how would I get the correct colour saturation, contrasts to make it look as if it was shot on my Grandads/ Dads 8mm/super8mm/16mm colour cine film (1950's - 1970's)?

I guess its a matter of playing around a little bit.

Any other ideas, anybody?

Thanks, all the best,

Ed Smith
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Old January 31st, 2002, 07:39 PM   #4
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as far as the saturation/contrast...i usually forgo any plug-ins and simply modify these attributes with adobe's built in filters (in premiere/after effects/photoshop). I've been able to get some distinctly "period" looking footage just by experimenting with the values.
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Old February 1st, 2002, 02:33 AM   #5
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For those die hard video artists who really want it to look authentic, be sure to manually draw "tape lines" on your splice. The edges of the tape collect dirt and project as black. Each frame where the splice joins (two frames) will have visable tape lines. Also, splicing tape attracts more dirt than usual. So draw more dirt on the frames leading up to and away from the splice. If you have a crappy theater near you, which you probably do, go watch a movie over two weeks old. You'll notice the dirt at the splices as well as the tape lines if you are fast enough. Also the image tends to jump when the splice is going through the projector gate.

Check out this Quicktime I did just to demonstrate all this in action:

http://207.168.10.78/splice1.mov

It is a little over 1 Meg in size, very short and no sound.
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Old February 1st, 2002, 08:58 AM   #6
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And don't forget to add the white flashes to cue the next reel.
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Old February 1st, 2002, 01:25 PM   #7
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White flashes? You mean from a really bad changeover? Actually what you probably would see is the reel tailing out or black, but that is for 35mm film. You could always add "cue dots" for the reel change. 8 seconds before the reel change place a black dot in the upper right hand corner of your screen for four frames. Then place another one (for four frames as well) exactly one second before the "reel change".

Maybe even a small "pop" in the sound 16 frames later would help (film audio is recorded 16 frames ahead of the picture on 35mm film, so the splice pop would be delayed by that much while it was traveling down to the sound drum). Of course if your "movie" is supposedly playing in Dolby Digital, DTS or SDDS, then there could be a small glitch (not pop) in the audio in exact sync with the splice. To simulate the digital sound dropping to the backup analog track, just lower the audio in volume by -6db for two frames. Or better yet, compress it so it loses all dynamic range and re-EQ it.
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Old February 2nd, 2002, 02:47 AM   #8
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Don't forget that there are three things you can do during production to make your videos have more of a film look...

1. Use depth-of-field to bring out the key elements in the shot
2. For exterior shots, use a water hose to lightly spray down the area where you'll be filming...especially pavement, stone walkways, vegetation, etc. Spray early enough so that liquid-look has time to evaporate so that only the dampness remains which really punches colors.
3. For interior shots, fog the set slightly (if only the background)...especially when you'll have rays of light shooting across the scene in the background such as from a window.

Of course, you don't want to use these tricks in all cases. Just watch popular TV shows and movies carefully and you'll get a feel for when they use these techniques.
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Old February 2nd, 2002, 02:30 PM   #9
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John,
I think I will have to try some of those camera effects, they sound really interesting.
I brought a smoke machine about a year ago and don't really use it (last time I did it was for a very atmospheric freeky short), so now I know what I could use it for.
The water idea sounds interesting, I had not really thought about that, and just started to realise, that most films and adverts use this trick (Doh!!).

Joe,
The short clip was also good, and I found out that I have a filter created by quicktime in premiere which will add scratches etc.

Any ideas for Cokin filters for any of these effects?

Cheers every one for all the information it will really help.

All the best,
Ed Smith
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Old February 2nd, 2002, 02:37 PM   #10
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Ed,

One more thing...I just saw on the Cyber Film School site that they sell a videotape covering this very topic. Apparently it's a collection of interviews from professional on how they achieve the "film look."

The title "How to Make Your Video Look Like Film." (clever, eh?)

http://www.cyberfilmschool.com/

Can't vouch for it's quality, though. Maybe someone here has seen it and can give you an idea.
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Old February 2nd, 2002, 02:48 PM   #11
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Brilliant website John, A*
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Old February 2nd, 2002, 03:53 PM   #12
 
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I've been playing with a Cokin SunSoft, no. 694. Seems to work pretty well for diffusion and warming.
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Old February 3rd, 2002, 04:20 AM   #13
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Actually the only thing I don't like about the Quicktime filter is that the scratches are white. A white scratch on a film would mean that the entire image of the film has been scraped off. Most scratches are base side scratches and appear black. Emulsion side scratches can appear as green for the first level, yellow for scratching through two levels and white for scratching through all three levels of emulsion.

Another thing I don't like is that the Quicktime filter animates too fast for my frame rate.... For DV it always must be 29.97 frames per second even if I delete every other frame and duplicate the remaining to make it "appear" to be running at 15 frames per second. The Quicktime filter will change the dirt specks on the frame every 1/30th of a second, which would be impossible on an old 15 frame per second film.
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Old February 3rd, 2002, 12:13 PM   #14
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i have no experience with that scratch filter, but couldnt you run the filter on the 29.97 footage first, then drop everyother frame and dupe. If my head is working correctly i would think this would do it.
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Old February 3rd, 2002, 04:12 PM   #15
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You're right, it can be done that way! Good thinking.
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