As I've been reading about the finer points of telecine transfers and 3:2 pulldown, more and more questions have been coming to mind regarding frame rates and the capabilities of telecine equipment, so hopefully someone can help clarify a few of my questions. (and while it's probably implied, it's worth mentioning that the frame rates in my post are all based on 60 Hz North American systems.)
Although a vast majority of telecine transfers are done at 24 FPS, I had always been under the impression that telecine machines are capable of transferring film at any desired frame rate. However, now that I'm starting to understand the mechanics behind film to video telecine transfers, I'm not so sure that this is the case. On account of having to adhere to the 24 FPS frame rate for achieving 3:2 pulldown, are most telecines limited to transferring film at 24 FPS (well, actually 23.976 FPS) or any multiple thereof, or 30 FPS transfers (actually 29.97 FPS) or any multiple thereof? I assume a 29.97 FPS transfer would technically be the easiest since it matches the video frame rate exactly and probably wouldn't require any special interlacing or pulldown processing. Or, do telecines have various types of internal interlacing algorithms that permit telecine transfers at virtually any frame rate?
Also, while telecine transfers commonly referred to as "24 FPS" are actually performed at 23.976 FPS, has it ever been common practice for cinematographers to film at 23.976 FPS instead of 24 FPS, provided their camera is capable of such a precise frame rate? I realize that the difference between 24 and 23.976 FPS is extremely negligible...it's only a 1/1000 reduction in speed, which amounts to about an increase of 3.6 seconds in play time over a period of 1 hour. However, in terms of visual appearance and syncing with audio for shorter scenes, I'm curious if any cinematographers have done so, especially if a project is destined for 24 FPS (actually 23.976 FPS) telecine transfer.
Finally, taking into consideration telecine judder and the visual effects of 3:2 pulldown, has filming at 30 FPS (or 29.976 FPS to accurately match the video frame rate) ever been considered as a way to improve the quality of a film project destined for telecine transfer, considering that it would provide a true 1:1 frame rate ratio for the telecine transfer? Aside from the obvious consequence of burning through film a little more quickly at 30 FPS than 24 FPS, would film shot and transferred at 30 FPS still maintain some of the overall appearance of film but have more of a video-esque appearance in terms of motion?
Lots of questions floating around in this post...I know Thanks to anyone who's made it this far and might be able to answer some of my questions!