Runaway Jury - Steadicam Tour de Force at

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The TOTEM Poll: Totally Off Topic, Everything Media
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Old February 18th, 2004, 08:55 AM   #1
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Runaway Jury - Steadicam Tour de Force

Perhaps you saw this movie in the theaters, but even if you haven't, it's out on dvd this week. Rent it or buy not just for one of the best demonstrations of how to do a steadicam shot without looking clinically smooth, but with style. The camera swirls around the actors, whether they are walking in front of a courthouse, in the courtroom, or being chased. John Cusack plays a "reluctant" juror who is anything but passive. Dustin Hoffman has the role of a crusading attorney in a tort suit, and Gene Hacking is a jury analyst and doer of dirty deeds for the defense. The defendant is a gun manufacturer.

The credits on the imdb site seem to missing the steadicam "a" operator (David Crone).

Charles probably knows him. It is amazing how well the good steadicam operators achieve near perfect framing in widescreen 2.35:1 format, given the narrow slit-like vertical view of the world. The DP (Robert Elswit) and Editor (William Steinkamp) appear on the dvd extras. Overall, I'd say this dvd provides you with as much information on the making of the film as Robert Rodriguez' Once Upon a Time in Mexico dvd. I hope you own a good projection tv, because you'll need one to really appreciate the lighting on Runaway Jury. Deep black backgrounds, and actors whose faces are lit perfectly. I wonder if video could ever achieve this film look. In all likelihood, Fox will release this on D-Theater tape (1080i format). At least they should, since it is a great example of modern cinematography.
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Old February 18th, 2004, 05:50 PM   #2
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I haven't checked out the DVD, but I did see the movie. If those
extra's are that interesting I'm definitely going to check it out.

Rob Lohman,
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Old February 18th, 2004, 10:58 PM   #3
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Sounds cool. I know of David Crone, haven't met in person. His dad is one of the pioneering early Steadicam operators, and one of my instructors when I took the workshop in '85.

I heard some stories from folks who worked on the movie that weren't awfully favorable towards the director...
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