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Best Kodak Stock for Student Film


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#1 Alana Katzner

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Posted 04 August 2007 - 05:39 PM

I'm shooting my first 16mm film project this fall and I am lost when it comes to which film stock would be best. I am applying for a Kodak film grant so I need to stick to Kodak stocks.

My film involves a lot of fantasy scenes (the genre, not dream sequences) and takes place inside (day and night) and outside (day). I know that I would like to have the least grain possible. The school also has a large L&G department, so I will be able to get any light that I need.

I have two different tones throughout the film. I would like the fantasy scenes to be very warm and would like to keep the "reality" scenes distinctly different. Would it be best to shoot using two different stocks, or to depend upon lighting.

I am still in the process of hiring a DP, but I would like to get rolling with my application which is why I would love any suggestions or tips! Any suggestions on how to decide how much film I'll need would also be wonderful.

Thanks so much,
Alana

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#2 Reinis Traidas

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Posted 06 August 2007 - 09:24 AM

I'm shooting my first 16mm film project this fall and I am lost when it comes to which film stock would be best. I am applying for a Kodak film grant so I need to stick to Kodak stocks.

My film involves a lot of fantasy scenes (the genre, not dream sequences) and takes place inside (day and night) and outside (day). I know that I would like to have the least grain possible. The school also has a large L&G department, so I will be able to get any light that I need.

I have two different tones throughout the film. I would like the fantasy scenes to be very warm and would like to keep the "reality" scenes distinctly different. Would it be best to shoot using two different stocks, or to depend upon lighting.

I am still in the process of hiring a DP, but I would like to get rolling with my application which is why I would love any suggestions or tips! Any suggestions on how to decide how much film I'll need would also be wonderful.

Thanks so much,
Alana


Since you don't have any EXT NIGHT scenes, I'd say - go for a decet mid-range stock that you can use basically anywhere. If you're shooting mostly indoors and a bit of outdoor day - get either the 200T or the 250D, depending on what lights you may be able to get/use. You'll be able to light for it interiors - no problem. If you're outside on a very sunny day, you might need to put in some darkening ND filters to compensate, but both of these stocks are good for pretty much "any" situation unless you really plan to shoot in low lighting conditions. As to the "warmth" of the image - it all depends on how you light it - e.g if you have the 200T, you might gel your tungsten lights with CTOs (orange gels) or by putting an orange filter on your lens to get that warm color. Or you can play with the colors in post.

There are many ways to make scenes/images distinctly visually different. I'd still say all depends on how they are lit - the stock doesn't matter that much, it is merely a technical thing. Your DP will light FOR the stock you are using, not the other way around. What I'd suggest is - don't light your night scenes too much - use subtle, low-key lighting to create high constrast ratios, warm them up. Do hard light maybe. Really depends on what the scenes are. For your "other" scenes - use more traditional lighting - flat, even and soft. You'll definately get a different feel to it. Anyway, there's no "right" way to do it.

200T would be my option. It's sharp and not at all grainy. Good stock.
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#3 Daniel Ainsworth

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Posted 06 August 2007 - 11:28 PM

but both of these stocks are good for pretty much "any" situation unless you really plan to shoot in low lighting conditions.



Just curious, why would these stocks 200t and 250D be unreliable in low lighting situations, in the scenario above specified? Also what would be recommended in that situation?

Edited by Daniel Ainsworth, 06 August 2007 - 11:29 PM.

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#4 Reinis Traidas

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Posted 07 August 2007 - 09:16 AM

Just curious, why would these stocks 200t and 250D be unreliable in low lighting situations, in the scenario above specified? Also what would be recommended in that situation?


Did not say those stocks would be unreliable. You can shoot on them just fine under any conditions - it's just that if you had a lot of night/exterior scenes planned, the more sensitive 500T would be a better choice, since it would allow you to get away with less lighting and squeeze more details out of "the darkness". I've shot some Vision2 500T out on the street with just a few dim street lights and the results were pretty amazing.
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Glidecam

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Metropolis Post

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Willys Widgets

Wooden Camera

Opal