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Super 8 film and 2K digital intermediate to 35mm film


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#1 Michael Ryan

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Posted 28 February 2007 - 08:05 PM

Hello All,

Many of you have heard about THE HALOGENUROS PROJECT on the internet over the last several months. In the current issue of SUPER 8 TODAY there is a very in-depth article on the short film and the incredible process the film was put through.

While many Hollywood films use Super-8 film when they want a grainy, retro look, THE HALOGENUROS PROJECT wanted to find out how good Super-8 film could look. I have seen some of the results and one can only say they are spectacular.

I think anyone who loves film and the technology behind it will find this a great read. Filmmaker Daniel Henriquez-Ilic's 9 minute film (with a 70,000 dollars budget) is really an incredible journey.

Who knows, the idea of a "totally shot in Super-8" feature film is not so impossible as it might seem

Mike


www.super8today.com
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#2 Darren Blin

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Posted 28 February 2007 - 10:43 PM

I'm just wondering if this guy spent $70,000 on a 9-minute camera test, is he hoping to use this technology for a longer format project?
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#3 Rick Palidwor

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Posted 01 March 2007 - 12:36 AM

Who knows, the idea of a "totally shot in Super-8" feature film is not so impossible as it might seem


81 minute feature Sleep Always was shot entirely on super 8, or are you referring to a 35mm print of a super 8 originated movie? That, we didn't do.

Rick
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#4 Michael Ryan

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Posted 01 March 2007 - 09:09 PM

Hello Rick,

My memory isn't that bad. I was thinking about a feature film shot (all) in Super-8, then to 35mm and having a general theatrical release.

Mike
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#5 Chris Cottrill

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Posted 01 March 2007 - 10:36 PM

The film tested many things, but throughout it all was the achievement of taking professional Super-8 negative film stocks, such as Kodak 50D, and then scanning the negs into a 2k digital intermediate (RGB 10 bit log), which was then edited and after post production work made into a 35mm negative, which is used to make 35mm positive prints that go to theatres. The finished product is a projectable 35mm print. Once the 2K digital intermediate is made, the rest of the process is not different from what many modern filmmakers are doing now, only they of course start with 35mm negatives instead of Super-8. The whole film and the process is fascinating and warranted a 7 page spread as well as the cover of the latest issue of Super 8 Today.

Cover8.jpg
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#6 Charles Doran

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Posted 02 March 2007 - 01:37 AM

The film tested many things, but throughout it all was the achievement of taking professional Super-8 negative film stocks, such as Kodak 50D, and then scanning the negs into a 2k digital intermediate (RGB 10 bit log), which was then edited and after post production work made into a 35mm negative, which is used to make 35mm positive prints that go to theatres. The finished product is a projectable 35mm print. Once the 2K digital intermediate is made, the rest of the process is not different from what many modern filmmakers are doing now, only they of course start with 35mm negatives instead of Super-8. The whole film and the process is fascinating and warranted a 7 page spread as well as the cover of the latest issue of Super 8 Today.

Cover8.jpg


Sounds fantastic. When might subscribers expect their copies, Chris?
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#7 Chris Cottrill

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Posted 02 March 2007 - 08:36 AM

Sounds fantastic. When might subscribers expect their copies, Chris?

It seems Europe and Canada have already received theirs.
I'm trying to check with the U.S. post office to see what the delay is for the domestic side.
Seems odd that they were mailed in the U.S., and yet people living in the U.S. get theirs last.
This on the "eve" of a probable 5% hike in first class postage.
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#8 Daniel Henriquez Ilic

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Posted 02 March 2007 - 01:51 PM

Hello,

Thank you for your good words. Just comment that the budget is around USD 70K however a big part of the budget was not placed as cash, but as services interchange, special discounts etc. It depends on how maths are done, sometimes it seems to me that the overall budget can be highier or lower. As this was a complete 2K uncompressed post, the value of post-production is high, because of the quality of the tools and platform used.

Within two weeks "Halogenuros" web-site should be working. On a first instance the research project paper will be available in spanish and then in english. That paper may help people that are looking to do a 2K DI or HD-DI for their super-8 project and so hopefully lower some cost due to previous experience cumulated on this research project. A trailer should be also on-line during March, but the free on-line version of the "Halogenuros" short-feature will not be available until june-july in order to respect some festivals regulations where the short-feature is applying for submission process.


Regards,
Daniel

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Edited by Daniel Henriquez Ilic, 02 March 2007 - 01:53 PM.

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#9 Douglas Hunter

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Posted 02 March 2007 - 03:43 PM

While it sounds interesting, I can't help but wonder why a project like this used super 8. Perhaps that question will be answered when I read the article.
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#10 John Adolfi

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Posted 05 March 2007 - 10:19 PM

Would you please give us the web site so we can check it out in two weeks.

Super-8 to 35mm in high quality without appologies? Where's santo when we need him to explain this all to us???? Don't we like to settle on poor quality images? What gives, that someone would actually invest in the format? Will this kill super-8? Will we be calling this new way of handeling the format super-9? We need to stop this before it gets too far and people get super-8 confused with 16mm. Come on let's question this guy as to why he is not using 16mm if he is going through all this trouble so he will second guess himself and stop this path of unrighteousness. Super-8 is just an amature format and that's all, right? Oh the madness.


ps: You go man, I love that you are taking super-8 to new heights!!!!!!
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#11 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 06 March 2007 - 12:07 PM

Would you please give us the web site so we can check it out in two weeks.

Super-8 to 35mm in high quality without appologies? Where's santo when we need him to explain this all to us???? Don't we like to settle on poor quality images? What gives, that someone would actually invest in the format? Will this kill super-8? Will we be calling this new way of handeling the format super-9? We need to stop this before it gets too far and people get super-8 confused with 16mm. Come on let's question this guy as to why he is not using 16mm if he is going through all this trouble so he will second guess himself and stop this path of unrighteousness. Super-8 is just an amature format and that's all, right? Oh the madness.
ps: You go man, I love that you are taking super-8 to new heights!!!!!!


A Super-16 camera that offers the same cool features found on Super-8 cameras such as time-exposure, single frame, time-lapse, multiple filming speeds from undercranking to slow motion with an internal motor and power supply doesn't exist, even though such a camera should at least be being considered for the digital age. You see, those are "Super-8 gimmicks" and a serious Super-16 filmmaker would never be caught doing those effects for their latest music video, commerical or short film project.

Meanwhile, virtually every reality TV, Detective show and Music Video uses digital frame rate manipulation in every episode, even if the show was shot on film! Seems that being able to speed up the image "in camera" would save the low budget filmmaker from having to shoot a ton of film to create the same effect that is commonplace on prime time television. Hollywood shoots a ton of film because they have the bucks to spend, that's not how the "up and coming" budding filmmaker would shoot if they were asked to get the same speeded up effect. The low budget filmmaker would create the effect in camera and save the production thousands of dollars in flim, processing, and transfer costs, except a Super-16 camera doesn't exist that does everything I mentioned above.
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#12 Daniel Henriquez Ilic

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Posted 06 March 2007 - 11:18 PM

The reason to use Super-8 on Halogenuros, is linked to the fact that the origin of this project is a technical research, that stated that it could be possible to reach a good quality of image at 35mm projection stage, from original super-8mm footage (modern color negative stocks and high quality 35mm optics) that were post-produced through 2K Digital Intemediate workflow (DPX files, 2K RGB 10 bit log).

By January 2005, a complete pilot-test was achieved with one minute (mute) of test super-8 footage post-produced through 2K DI to 35mm film recording stage and then 35mm positive. The projections of that pilot-test showed that the hypotesis of the research was true. Indeed a few seconds of an "eye" that was shot on that pilot test was included on the editition of "Halogenuros" short film.
That shot was done using Eastman Kodak Vision2 100T color negative (Pro8/12 stock) under tungsten fresnel lighting and Carl Zeiss Sonnar (35mm Photo Lens for SLR 135 format) at T 2.8 and 8 f.p.s for aprox. 90ยบ equivalent shutter angle (guillotine shutter on the Pro8mm Classic ex-Baulieu 4008 camera).



Concerning Super-16mm cameras, I hope that Super-8mm could reach that level of camera hardware...

http://www.aaton.com...xtera/index.php
http://www.arri.de/entry/416.htm


... but retaining the best of the super-8/single-8 cameras concept.

May be some features could be optional, so helping to have a lower base price of a potential new 8mm camera(s) basic body, and also as many special-effects can be done later during eventual digital intermediate post-production.

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Edited by Daniel Henriquez Ilic, 06 March 2007 - 11:20 PM.

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#13 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 12:29 AM

Concerning Super-16mm cameras, I hope that Super-8mm could reach that level of camera hardware...

http://www.aaton.com...xtera/index.php
http://www.arri.de/entry/416.htm
... but retaining the best of the super-8/single-8 cameras concept.

May be some features could be optional, so helping to have a lower base price of a potential new 8mm camera(s) basic body, and also as many special-effects can be done later during eventual digital intermediate post-production.


I'll say it again since it's true and relevant, there has never been a Super-16 camera that does what a Nizo 801, Bauer Royal 6, 8 or 10, Eumig 860, 880, Revue 860, and Bolex 680 are capable of doing. It's not a refuteable point, yet instead all I hear is how it's either irrelevant or how too bad super-8 isn't like 16.

As for doing it in D.I., that is a dangerous place to create effects as the cost can be gigantic. Especially when doing it in camera saves film stock, processing charges and even transfer time later on.
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#14 Douglas Hunter

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 01:24 AM

Come on let's question this guy as to why he is not using 16mm if he is going through all this trouble so he will second guess himself and stop this path of unrighteousness. Super-8 is just an amature format and that's all, right?


Sarcastic tone noted, but I guess I don't understand going through all this trouble to use super 8 this way because I assume that people think of themselves as filmmakers, and as such want to achieve a specific look and feel for each project but don't insist upon a method or format before the look is defined. The idea being that we seek to find the path of lest resistance (technically, economically) to achieving the look and feel we want for each project. If the only way to achieve the necessary look for a project is to shoot super 8 do a DI and output to 35mm then so be it, but I suspect that their are other less challenging and less expensive ways of getting the same results.

But then Daniel writes:

The reason to use Super-8 on Halogenuros, is linked to the fact that the origin of this project is a technical research, that stated that it could be possible to reach a good quality of image at 35mm projection stage, from original super-8mm footage


So the motivation here was strictly technical, it was a research question. This has nothing to do with crafting the image to meet the unique needs of telling a specific story. Also note that he uses the phrase "good quality image," whatever THAT means! maybe someone can post the tec. specs for a good quality image.

I will always love super-8 but will never understand why some people insist that a specific format (super-8 or any other) should be used for everything. An idea we see a lot of here.
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#15 Patrick Cooper

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 04:40 AM

Very interesting test to see how 'good' super 8 would look when transferred to 35mm via D.I. using modern slow speed stocks. Although optimal quality was attempted at every step of the way, I note that the Zeiss Sonnar lens was used at T2.8. Was this due to the tungtsen lighting not being sufficiently bright, hence the use of a frame rate of 8fps? Pity that you were not working at mid aperture but i'm sure that the results still look impressive regardless.

Edited by Patrick Cooper, 07 March 2007 - 04:43 AM.

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#16 Daniel Henriquez Ilic

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 06:53 AM

Hello Douglas,


The project was presented like this at the grant applying stage (Fondart). The term "good quality of image" was leaved as generic. What I can tell you from final results is that you can obtain satisfying result in terms of colour reproduction and spatial resolution. Besides test charts, this is verified through chroma keying operations and digital compositions made using super-8 vision2 color negative. The exposure latitude is wide as expected for those stocks, and the temporal resolution of 70 frames per second is quite interesting for motion...
Then, concerning granulation the vision2 100T (Pro8/12) and vision2 50D (Pro8/01) looks in 35mm, very close to an optical blow-up from 16mm neg (when using 16mm for the interpositive stage). Whilst 200T (7217 super-8) and 250 D (Pro8/05) vision2 color negs. show much more grain structure.


Patrick : In that specific pilot test, the T 2.8 and 8 f.p.s were necessary due to low light level. That test was useful to magnify how much lighting was going to be necessary for the following production shots.



Daniel

Edited by Daniel Henriquez Ilic, 07 March 2007 - 06:55 AM.

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#17 Sam Wells

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 10:03 AM

But then Daniel writes:
So the motivation here was strictly technical, it was a research question. This has nothing to do with crafting the image to meet the unique needs of telling a specific story. Also note that he uses the phrase "good quality image," whatever THAT means! maybe someone can post the tec. specs for a good quality image.

I will always love super-8 but will never understand why some people insist that a specific format (super-8 or any other) should be used for everything. An idea we see a lot of here.


I think some kinds of technical research - and I'd include this project - are valid for their own sake; why presuppose so much as to how the "end user" will interpret or use this knowledge ?

If you know how far you can take a Super 8 image you certainly can surmise how far you can take S16 !

I'm not an S8 shooter at all (not since I began filmmaking & a few exceptions) - but I had one project where I had to consider it as a possibilty - a choice over DV - altho as it turned out I could and did shoot 16 as I wanted to.

This also raises the question: if 2K is optimal for S8 is it insufficient for S16 ?

-Sam
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#18 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 11:18 AM

Patrick : In that specific pilot test, the T 2.8 and 8 f.p.s were necessary due to low light level. That test was useful to magnify how much lighting was going to be necessary for the following production shots.
Daniel


Didn't you say you were using a 90 degree shutter? You probably lost an f-stop of sensitivity right there.
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#19 Douglas Hunter

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 01:54 PM

Sam,

I don't presuppose how they will interpert or use the knowledge. But I admit that I am a bit weary of some of the super 8 discussions here on this site because of the dedication to a specific format rather than a pragmatic approach to achieving a desired aesthetic result.

But I disagree that testing super 8 in this way says anything about S16, they are totally different beasts. Besides S16 has been used in many different ways that incorporate DI, HD and blow ups into the work flow so it's much more of a known quantity when it come to working it into a digital work flow.
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#20 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 02:24 PM

This also raises the question: if 2K is optimal for S8 is it insufficient for S16 ?

-Sam


An excellent question.

Scanners that can effectively scan a 35mm film frame and even a 16mm film frame cannot do the same for Super-8. The interpretation could be that Super-8 actually needs a higher quality scanner than 16mm and 35mm, and that is a scary thought because if that is true and were applied to the situation at hand, then that would mean that 2K is not enough.

Another consideration is contrast and whether the shot is a wide shot or a close up. How about a wide shot with a lot of contrast? Perhaps a wide shot with high contrast needs the highest resolving power possible whereas a nicely lit close-up needs less resolving power, or not. Anybody care to take a stab at that scenario?
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