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All the President's Men


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#1 Jason Debus

Jason Debus
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Posted 14 October 2008 - 04:24 PM

I'm intrigued by this quote from Gordon Willis regarding the use of moving split diopters in "All the President's Men":

"I designed a piece of equipment to permit the use of sliding diopters on a moving camera or a zoom shot, to maintain selective focus front to back. The unit was used frequently on 'All The President's Men,' which it was designed for. Up until this point, diopters were used to split focus on set shots only. I had a custom set of splits [diopters] made for use in the unit. Panavision was kind enough to build the piece."
...
"They can be placed at any angle in front of the primary lens," Willis said. "The trick on 'All The President's Men' was the ability to move them in and out while the scene was progressing, and the camera was moving, and not see it."

Is this still available through Panavision? Are there other films that have used 'moving' diopters?
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#2 Jason Debus

Jason Debus
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Posted 12 November 2008 - 01:06 AM

I watched the DVD of All the President's Men, keeping an eye out for what Willis was talking about. If the unit Willis was referring to was 'used frequently' I sure didn't notice it, most of the office shots looked like deep focus lighting. There definitely was some locked down split diopter shots but I didn't notice any 'moving' diopter shots until the end where there's a slow push in on a television with Redford & Hoffman in the background.

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