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Location shooting 24p HDV OR Arri BL2


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#1 LondonFilmMan

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 04:42 AM

I have to shoot on location and I wondered, and maybe its a silly question but one tries to not assume, what the outcome of quality would be between a 24p (Panasonic) HDV and an Arri 35BL. This would be for a 2-hour feature film.
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#2 Michael Collier

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 05:08 AM

your trying to compare 35mm to HDV??? are you serious?? if you expected any other answer than what I have to offer than you need more experience or schooling or whatever.

Let me preface this: I have not shot film (other than lots and lots and lots of still) I have shot lots of HDV (my latest feature, beekeeping, was shot on the HVR-ZU1 sony HDV. The panny will have more quality than the ZU1 and be closer to a varicam, but bottom line their HDV cannot....CANNOT be better than the varicam. The varicam exibits video like tendancies on a film out, so I can only reason that the 200 will have similar artifacting. In its price range shooting DVCPRO-HD to P2 disk would be much MUCH MUCH better than HDV (which I consider better than DV, lesser than professional HD formats) but no where near 35mm. Most people would say there is large difference between S16mm so you got to figure that there is a huge difference between 35mm and DVCPRO-HD on a pro-sumer camera.

That said:

do it on cost alone. Consider cost. What is your budget. Film should factor in a certain percent of the cost, it should never cost more than half of the cost (and thats assuming guerrila style, where nobody is paid and only production costs are paid.) if its between paying real actors or getting real film, get the real actors. Plan what is best for the complete movie, not just the look. Most people cannot tell a real difference between 35mm and HD on an SD tele, so consider your likely market. If its for DVD most likely, than dont worry about 35mm. You can sink money into more productive places, like cranes dollys jibs actors lights sound post production set design and shooting days.....just ot name a few.

Format choice is HUGE, especially on a small project. Consider all options.

You have a 2 hour feature. that means that your likely shooting around 10-20 hours of material. So in HDV your paying around 10K for the camera, P2 cards and firestore. With 35mm your paying around 30-40K minimum on film costs. Plus 1000 a day for camera rental. Add to that the extra lighting you need and its easily a 50-100K difference.

That said:

Your plans for the movie will affect your choice. If you want to find a distro who will put it in theaters, 35mm will definatley set you appart and give you a good chance at getting the movie sold for that option. However if the planned distro is DVD, 35mm wont add a whole lot of production value in the eyes of a distrobtor. They would rather pick up an iffy movie on a great deal, which if you shoot HDV, proffits are easier to come by.

Also check out super16. In almost the same situation you are in, I have opted to shoot my latest feature, In search of the Armegedon Chronicals, in super-16. Its only a 100min film, so shorter than yours, but film cost I have kept around 10K, and that includes stock for shooting a 4:1 film, proccessing of the negative, DVCAM telecine for editting, and the final spirit HD datacine for final HD output. The whole film will cost 30K. a great deal compared to what it would cost to shoot in 35mm. (and comperable to shooting it in HDV or DVCPRO)
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#3 Andrew Koch

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 05:16 AM

The difference is enormous. First of all, resolution is completely different. 35mm has AT LEAST 4 times more resolution (many would argue at least 6X more) than even a professional quality HI Def camera, but with HDV, that's a prosumer format. HDV is highly compressed, it has significantly less dynamic range than film, it's handling of color information is highly compromised. 35mm also has less depth of field than hiDef, meaning that it is easier to control where you want to focus the audience's attention. If you are concerned about getting the best quality, the Arri BL2 is hands down the better pick. If you are on a very tight budget, the HDV format will save you some money, but you will take a major hit in quality. (You also have less options in post with HDV because of it's compression)
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#4 Andrew Koch

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 05:28 AM

One more thing. If you choose to shoot on video, please make sure you take the same care with your lighting that you would with film. I had a meeting with a director who was discussing the upcoming production that we were about to work on. It was a low budget feature shot on the AG DVX100. I asked her about the budget for lighting and she said that we wouldn't need to do any lighting because we were shooting on video. That mindset has got to stop unless people want to make movies that look like home videos of soccer games.
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#5 LondonFilmMan

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Posted 29 March 2006 - 09:59 AM

Thank you all. I appreciate knowing that HDV can be about 4-6 times less quality as 35mm film. In general, you said what I was hoping to hear, so thanks.
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#6 John Pytlak RIP

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Posted 29 March 2006 - 01:45 PM

If you are definitely planning on having 35mm film release prints, you also need to factor in the cost of recording your HDV back onto 35mm film. Add up the figures, and originating on 35mm film is likely very competitive, and as others have mentioned, gives much better image quality.

If the primary market is DVD or broadcast release, and 35mm film prints are unlikely, you can likely save some money upfront and still get a film look with Super-16. If your production is commercially successful, Super-16 still keeps open the option of a good looking 35mm release using a Digital Intermediate.

http://www.kodak.com...d=0.1.4.3&lc=en

http://www.kodak.com...rDieAlone.jhtml
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