It’s a truism of our craft that compelling visual stories in film and TV are communicated in the subtext of scenes, that is to say, what we exclude from the Frame is almost always more important to the storytelling than what we include in the Frame. As master image creators and craftsmen, we know and understand: The less you show, the more you know.
The film and TV business is a prominent producer of things that were once very expensive, but which have become much more affordable as developments overtook them. That’s never clearer than when browsing everyone’s favorite auction website, which has recently seen Spirit telecines, once seven figures, selling for less than the price of a good used car. For photochemistry enthusiasts, that’s exciting, though cooler heads might suspect a catch.
Still photo lenses find their way into film and TV work via many different routes and for many different reasons. It’s happened so much that the prices on some popular options have risen precipitously in recent years. Are there still good deals to be had?
Though mostly a publicity stunt, Major League Baseball’s Field of Dreams Game live telecast on August 12th proved to be a hit for everyone involved—including the Fox Sports team and production company Game Creek Video—tasked with putting it on.
Filmmaking is not usually a weekend pursuit, but a sufficiently clever script can make a wide-ranging story happen in a very contained space.
The Tokyo 2020 Olympics is giving Japan the perfect stage for showing off the quality of 8K broadcasting, even if the Games are a year late and muted in their impact by the lack of crowds and controversy over staging them at all at a time of a Covid-19 surge in the country. It is the chance for the country and especially its national broadcaster NHK, which has long championed the cause, to convince other countries that they should consider adopting this high resolution 4320 x7680 format despite its huge toll on bandwidth and storage.
For most of its history, film and TV work has, by any sane measure, been incredibly complicated. Photochemical film was a nightmare of precision engineering and process control. Digital alternatives, intended to make things cheaper and simpler, involve some of our highest-performance electronics.
When composing and lighting scenes, DOP’s usually seek to maximize texture and perspective. The rationale is simple: We live in a world that is unmistakably three-dimensional, so DOPs seeking to faithfully represent the natural world exploit a range of ways to promote the three-dimensional illusion.