Jump to content


Photo

Shoot film or go digital?


  • Please log in to reply
54 replies to this topic

#1 George Ebersole

George Ebersole
  • Sustaining Members
  • 1572 posts
  • Industry Rep
  • San Francisco Bay Area

Posted 07 June 2010 - 04:19 PM

I'm just kind of curious, given a choice, would you rather shoot on film or shoot digital?
  • 0

#2 Adrian Sierkowski

Adrian Sierkowski
  • Sustaining Members
  • 7118 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles, Ca

Posted 07 June 2010 - 04:26 PM

Depends on the story, the budget and the aesthetic, but I tend towards film whenever I can.
  • 0

#3 Bill DiPietra

Bill DiPietra
  • Sustaining Members
  • 2339 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • New York City

Posted 07 June 2010 - 08:47 PM

I have, do and always will shoot film rather than digital.
  • 0

#4 Jon Rosenbloom

Jon Rosenbloom
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 713 posts
  • Cinematographer

Posted 07 June 2010 - 09:51 PM

If it's me and a director and no AC, give me a ex-1. Otherwise, film, film, film.
  • 0

#5 George Ebersole

George Ebersole
  • Sustaining Members
  • 1572 posts
  • Industry Rep
  • San Francisco Bay Area

Posted 08 June 2010 - 01:19 PM

Nobody else?

The reason I ask is because JP Beauviala, Aaton's founder, states that 35mm is 7k's worth of visual information. Based on that, one wonders why anyone would shoot on anything other than film. It seems like if film is going to give that much more visual content, then would it not make sense to always shoot film?

Is it me, or is traffic really low on this website as of late?

Can any of the pros chime in on this?
  • 0

#6 Phil Rhodes

Phil Rhodes
  • Sustaining Members
  • 11947 posts
  • Other

Posted 08 June 2010 - 01:43 PM

My opinion on this has always been moderated by that elephant over there in the corner wearing the "$" T-shirt.

I have seen productions, which could barely afford it, compromise everything to shoot film. These shows had insufficient crew, insufficient food, insufficient everything and often terribly compromised production design, just so they could send 75% of their production budget through the camera. This is not a smart approach; what you end up with is really high dynamic range, really high resolution images of a tedious show. In fact, in my experience, you don't even necessarily get the resolution or the nice clean images; really good film images require an awful lot of attention to detail and if you are short-handed or not using experienced crew it is terribly easy to get wrong.


Therefore I'd shoot film, but only if I could very clearly afford to do it properly and there was no doubt in my mind about that. Electronic cameras are much more forgiving of a low budget, from every perspective.


P
  • 0

#7 Vincent Sweeney

Vincent Sweeney
  • Sustaining Members
  • 686 posts
  • Director
  • LA at the moment.

Posted 08 June 2010 - 02:44 PM

I'm sorry but I could care less what resolution some format supposedly has and the desire to use whatever has the most "K's" shows a lot of ignorance about one's craft.

Some material seems to need the various qualities that film has, it's that simple to me.

In 2015, the "Z camera" might shoot 12K but that doesn't mean anything to me or to the end consumer.

Maybe the board is slow lately because people, including myself, have finally become tired of the trend-fueled tech talk that seems to get worse with every new (monthly?) camera release. The DSLR, RED, 'K'-talk, etc. is not that beneficial and has become tiresome. Maybe it will all settle one day and more concern for story and craft will emerge and corporate, censored forums will fade a little.
  • 0

#8 Jon Rosenbloom

Jon Rosenbloom
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 713 posts
  • Cinematographer

Posted 08 June 2010 - 03:03 PM

"Any pro's want to chime in"??? I don't how to take that. I refer you to my recent "In Production" post.
  • 0

#9 alfredoparra

alfredoparra
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 177 posts
  • Producer

Posted 08 June 2010 - 03:15 PM

this is a question you ask your pockets! I would shoot both! depends on the project budget
  • 0

#10 George Ebersole

George Ebersole
  • Sustaining Members
  • 1572 posts
  • Industry Rep
  • San Francisco Bay Area

Posted 08 June 2010 - 10:34 PM

this is a question you ask your pockets! I would shoot both! depends on the project budget

Heh, are you sure?

Back in the day I was working with a couple of actors who wanted to produce a project. One of them was real high on a real stinker of a film; Beverly Hills Vampire. The thing was shot on Super-8, marketed on VHS, and made money. He thought we could pull it off.

I said "No", and so did the other guy. The "negative cost" was low, but for us it seemed like if just shot on 16mm we'd be okay. Then we considered BETACAM SP telecine, then 35mm. And the incrimental cost of shooting stuff seemed really cheap. But it wasn't.

In the end we didn't get anything done. I went on to AD and stage manage, while those two jokers went on to unknown careers (one recently died in a car crash I think), while the other ADs for Pixar.

So, what's my point? Well, my personal thinking at the time was that if we couldn't do something well, then better not to shoot it at all.
  • 0

#11 James Steven Beverly

James Steven Beverly
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 4199 posts
  • Director
  • El Paso, Texas

Posted 08 June 2010 - 11:21 PM

Shoot film or digital, forget about it. Who cares. Sign a star. THAT's what you want to worry about if you're gonna try to sell it!! IF you only look at the medium it's self there is no contest, film wins hands down. If you look at production costs / release strategy, it's a toss up. A well planned shoot can bring film in and the same cost or less than the (as Gordon Willis put it) the "dump truck directing" approach to digital film making. I personally would ONLY shoot film unless there was a STRONG technically compelling reason to shoot digital. For the most part, I don't like the way digital sees color and I like a certain amount of grain. Call it an artistic choice.
  • 0

#12 Simon Wyss

Simon Wyss
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1416 posts
  • Other
  • Basel, Switzerland

Posted 09 June 2010 - 11:21 AM

Chemical film, polyester base motion-picture film, perforated, in cameras on tripods, at any rate from one frame a day or so to 500 per second or more if possible. Forward and backwards, under water and in the ice. 35 mm and 65 mm. Sometimes 9.5 mm. Black-and-white film at the standard four perforation step, full frame. Colour film of ISO 50 or 64 for the big screen. Lit. Worked out. Suffered. Budgeted. Cinema. Even for three minutes final length
  • 0

#13 George Ebersole

George Ebersole
  • Sustaining Members
  • 1572 posts
  • Industry Rep
  • San Francisco Bay Area

Posted 13 June 2010 - 08:26 AM

Chemical film, polyester base motion-picture film, perforated, in cameras on tripods, at any rate from one frame a day or so to 500 per second or more if possible. Forward and backwards, under water and in the ice. 35 mm and 65 mm. Sometimes 9.5 mm. Black-and-white film at the standard four perforation step, full frame. Colour film of ISO 50 or 64 for the big screen. Lit. Worked out. Suffered. Budgeted. Cinema. Even for three minutes final length

Huh? :huh:

Anybody else? If you had your choice would you always shoot film, or is there something about pixels that does it for ya?
  • 0

#14 Chris Burke

Chris Burke
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1675 posts
  • Boston, MA

Posted 13 June 2010 - 10:36 AM

film, always film for my person projects. Also when it suits, I recommend film to others as well. All depends on the project. If I had my druthers, film, without a doubt.
  • 0

#15 George Ebersole

George Ebersole
  • Sustaining Members
  • 1572 posts
  • Industry Rep
  • San Francisco Bay Area

Posted 13 June 2010 - 11:46 PM

film, always film for my person projects. Also when it suits, I recommend film to others as well. All depends on the project. If I had my druthers, film, without a doubt.

Wow, no other replies. Interesting.

I'm sure the topic's been bandied about a bit, but I figured with all the debate of who's willing to shoot what, and with the continued advancement in chip technology, that there would surely be some vocal opinions.

I guess I was wrong.
  • 0

#16 Adrian Sierkowski

Adrian Sierkowski
  • Sustaining Members
  • 7118 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles, Ca

Posted 14 June 2010 - 08:27 AM

I think that most people on here understand that what we shoot on is based a lot on what the budget it and what the look we're going for it and which format(s) best suite those needs.
  • 0

#17 John Sprung

John Sprung
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4635 posts
  • Other

Posted 15 June 2010 - 01:27 PM

It depends on lots of stuff, most of which has been mentioned above. My "Columbo" one more thing is: How are you going to distribute it? If your audience will see it on TV, then it's a no brainer. Digital all the way. For theatrical, you have to think about all the factors already mentioned.



-- J.S.
  • 0

#18 Mei Lewis

Mei Lewis
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 348 posts
  • Other
  • UK

Posted 15 June 2010 - 02:10 PM

As a stills shooter digital all the way. I *heart* pixles.
  • 0

#19 Simon Reynolds

Simon Reynolds
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 15 posts
  • Camera Operator

Posted 24 June 2010 - 05:17 PM

As a stills shooter film all the way. I *heart* silver halides.

;)
  • 0

#20 Cary Sato Lee

Cary Sato Lee
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 10 posts
  • Director
  • Hollywood, CA. USA

Posted 30 June 2010 - 02:39 AM

Wow, no other replies. Interesting.

I'm sure the topic's been bandied about a bit, but I figured with all the debate of who's willing to shoot what, and with the continued advancement in chip technology, that there would surely be some vocal opinions.

I guess I was wrong.



http://motion.kodak....nials/index.htm
  • 0


Rig Wheels Passport

Willys Widgets

Aerial Filmworks

rebotnix Technologies

FJS International, LLC

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Visual Products

CineLab

Metropolis Post

Tai Audio

Technodolly

CineTape

The Slider

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Wooden Camera

Paralinx LLC

Opal

Abel Cine

Ritter Battery

Glidecam

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Technodolly

Aerial Filmworks

Wooden Camera

CineLab

Visual Products

The Slider

Metropolis Post

Abel Cine

Rig Wheels Passport

CineTape

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Glidecam

Paralinx LLC

Tai Audio

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

FJS International, LLC

rebotnix Technologies

Ritter Battery

Willys Widgets

Opal