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DP's - Whose actions affect your work the most?


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#1 John Thomas

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Posted 25 March 2007 - 09:54 PM

Tell us which collaborator has impacted your photography the most? I know that we are all part of a team with a common goal... blah, blah, blah, but who has made you look good, who has tried to ruin you? Who just cares about their own a$$? Who do you wish you could always work with? Have any stories?

1) Producer $$$
2) 1st Assistant Director
3) Post Production Supervisor
4) Editor
5) Production Designer
6) Wardrobe Designer
7) Director
8) other
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#2 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 25 March 2007 - 10:22 PM

Director more than anyone, for me.
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#3 Brian Dzyak

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Posted 25 March 2007 - 10:27 PM

Doing what I do, I'm typically more of a DP/Director as I make most and/or all of the creative choices regarding precise location, angle, camera placement, lens choice, when to hit the on button, etc...you get the idea.

With that in mind, my work can easily be undermined when one of the many underqualified pseudo-producer/directors whom I work for and/or with decide that they suddenly want to be "creative" or decide that they want to do their job as a producer at the most inopportune time.

For instance, I recently had to shoot an interview with a very highly placed CEO of a huge company. The "producer" got the jones to shoot this one outside. Okay, except that it was going to be at 2 in the afternoon, on a hot day, out in the middle of everything where the only shade would be the solid that I'd have to fly over him to control the light.

Well, Mr. Genius never bothered to find out from the CEO if he wouldn't mind sitting outside in the middle of the hot afternoon with his three-piece suit on. Naturally, after I had set up, CEO shows up and complains that he can't do it there because he would be squinting the whole time, and not because of the HMI I needed to fill him in.

So we go "scout" a very nearby location which would have put him in the shade (which would have caused me almost impossible to solve problems), but he still thought he would be squinting too much. Bottom line is that he was saying in a very diplomatic and polite way to the Producer that he wasn't going to do this outside.

So suddenly, "Producer" is looking at me to save his butt from a situation that should have never happened in the first place. Just on the other side of the wall we were standing near, was an attractive interior that we had earmarked for someone else later in the week. Realizing the problem of scheduling for the very busy CEO and knowing that I needed to do anything and fast, I "took over" and made the executive decision to shoot the CEO in that interior location. "Producer" raised a fuss because it wasn't "appropriate" for the CEO and it was supposed to be for this other person. Tough. We either do it there and now or he's going to reschedule and find somewhere else inside. We of course did it where I decided, but the "under the breath" grief I had to endure for days afterwards was beyond ridiculous.

That's just one of many examples of how some producer/directors in my arena conduct business. And it seems to be getting worse. They seem to be getting younger and as soon as they feel like they can put the word "producer" or "director" on a business card, they put themselves out there and expect experienced crews to either do their work for them or to save them when their own failure to do proper prep work explodes on them.

I'm beginning to think that it's time to move up and do their job that I know I can do better in every way. The pay should be better with less heavy lifting! :) (...I just saw the doctor about shoulder pain that I've been having for a few years...it seems that 20 years of carrying camera gear around is pulling my spine to the right causing pain that won't go away without a lot of physical therapy.)
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#4 Chayse Irvin

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Posted 25 March 2007 - 11:39 PM

My favorite part of DPing is collaborating with the Director and pre visualizing the film along with the Production Designer. I'm working with this new Director named Randy Ross right now and I'm finding it a pure joy. We have extensive conversations about how a scene should be played out visually and how we can manipulate the audience. That?s the real joyful part of film making for me. I'm not yet experienced enough to walk onto a set and start to come up with ideas, or better yet "brilliant" ideas that serve the story. Its great to work with a director that likes prep as much as I do, and then we can execute to the best of our abilities. We have been prepping for 3 months straight.
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#5 Bob Hayes

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Posted 10 April 2007 - 06:19 PM

The first assistant Cameraman is a key collaboration. With a good ac I can weather any storm.
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Aerial Filmworks

Ritter Battery

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Wooden Camera

FJS International, LLC

Rig Wheels Passport

CineLab

Visual Products

Glidecam

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

rebotnix Technologies

Abel Cine

The Slider

Metropolis Post