Believe it or not, ARRI makes more than the Alexa and cool internet web-apps. The company built its reputation on precision film cameras and even though most their press comes in the way of digital offerings, celluloid is still ingrained in ARRI. Now you can watch a cool video about how one of their cameras, the Arri 435 Xtreme, is built courtesy of “How It’s Made” and YouTube.
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Last night at the 83rd Academy Awards, Natalie Portman gave one of the more sincere speeches after winning Best Actress. In that speech she took the time to thank the camera operators of Black Swan among the usual “Thank You’s.” That kind of recognition is rare for below the line crew members and was a classy move on her part.
The Society of Camera Operators and editor Bob Joyce teamed together to create a great little montage of camera operators throughout Hollywood films.
Douglas Hart is one the most respected names within camera assisting / operating / cinematography circles. That’s because he spent a good while as a camera assistant for Gordon Willis and is also the author of one of two essential books on camera assisting. This is a guy who has seen it all, done it all and despite his humble claims, probably knows it all too.
Part of the enjoyment of watching LOST, for myself, was the cinematography and production value that went into the show. I recently found a video online of Terry O’Quinn, who plays John Locke in the show, talking about the crew behind the camera and how their technical abilities helped enable the art of LOST.
Remember that old series of Bud Light commercials that saluted “real men of genius?” Where they would pick someone who is almost always relatively unknown but that everyone is aware of and sing a song to/about them? Well, it turns out that Bud Light was willing to shine a light on the usually invisible camera assistants in one of these ads.
A couple of weeks ago I worked as a camera assistant/swing on a behind-the-scenes shoot for a Virginia lottery commercial. The commercial, which centered around a dog wrapping lottery tickets as gifts for his owners, was shot in Richmond, VA.
About 20 years ago, Michael Caine, one of the more talented and prolific actors of modern times, made a video called “Acting in Film” that was aired on the BBC. While in school, a professor showed me the hour-long workshop and I was inspired by Caine’s knowledge of not just the abstract concepts but the detailed acting techniques that are also important.
Below the Beltway, a film I worked on last summer, has recently released a trailer. The film stars Tate Donovan, Kip Pardue, Sarah Clarke, Annie Wersching and Xander Berkley and was directed by Dave Fraunces with cinematography by Adam Silver.