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Shooting "vintage" credits/titles


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#1 Bo Price

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Posted 14 August 2010 - 10:30 AM

I'm making a short film (on 16mm), and am trying to get an "old-fashioned" look for the credits, a la Charlie Chaplin, Or, at the very least, simple credits that are actually on film, with the grain, flicker, etc. -- as opposed to something done in the Avid Title Tool. I assume every student film that was actually finished on film has solved this problem nicely, so any help appreciated.

Is there a company that does this for cheap? Or any other ideas (other than simply shooting title cards with a camera on an animation board?)

I've noticed a lot of big TV shows that are shot on film skimp on this, and it always feels odd. I've seen several shows on HBO, shot on film and everything looks great, and then the credits roll, and suddenly it looks like it was made on somebody's laptop with iMovie.

Anyway, any help appreciated. Attached is an example still. Thanks!

Bo
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#2 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 14 August 2010 - 01:05 PM

Hi,

If you look right at the very end of yonder graphics demo there's some old silent-era style titles I did:



Of course that's almost cartoonishly overdone, but generally it's just a case of making it flicker and jump about a bit.

I know what you mean about TV movies having video titles; it's awful. It's a matter of both technique and design - I find movie titles tend to use smaller text and any animation and dissolves will happen at 24p not 50 or 60i. There's also the factor of full white movie titles being effectively overexposed, so any non-white detail in the title can fade out quite a bit before the peak whites start to darken. That's more an issue on legacy stuff transferred from prints on on older telecines, but you can simulate it digitally anyway.

P
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#3 Bo Price

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Posted 14 August 2010 - 01:23 PM

Sorry, I don't think my example posted. Something like this...
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#4 Karel Bata

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Posted 14 August 2010 - 01:26 PM

What format you finishing on? If you're going digital you could do it in post. It's difficult to get a convincing retro look with modern stock.
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#5 Bo Price

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Posted 14 August 2010 - 01:34 PM

Thanks, Phil! Nicely done. Was that all just adding digital filters, etc.? I've added grain before by simply taking pure white (completely overexposed" film footage, and superimposing over digital stills, and that helps a little.

It's been awhile since I was in film school, but I remember there being some company (this was in New York) that could do credits on film, and if there is anything like that in Los Angeles that still works "old school" -- and preferably cheap, because I'm almost out of money -- that would be great.

It is crazy, though, how little thought/effort goes into closing credits on projects that probably cost millions per episode (I'm looking at you, HBO). I know credits aren't *that* important, but sometimes the font is so amateurish, etc., they might as well add a sawtooth wipe or shattered-glass effect while they're at it.
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