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#1 Geovane Marquez

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Posted 20 September 2010 - 12:10 PM

I have a two page short I would like to shoot on 35mm. What would be the cost? There is some CGI.
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#2 Justin Hayward

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Posted 20 September 2010 - 01:40 PM

Approximately $7510 – give or take… ;)
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#3 Geovane Marquez

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Posted 20 September 2010 - 02:29 PM

That's without the CGI right? Because I am doing my own CGI for free.

$7,000 for two minutes? It doesn't make any sense. Well in that case I guess shoot on the RED? That should could it down to like $1000?

Here's Black Star by the way...
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#4 Michael Kubaszak

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Posted 20 September 2010 - 02:54 PM

or you could shoot on 7D, that'd bring your costs to like $4. :P
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#5 Bruce Taylor

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Posted 20 September 2010 - 03:50 PM

$7,000 for two minutes? It doesn't make any sense.


10:1 shooting ratio, 2000' rawstock, $1300. Processing, $200, telecine $1000, camera rental- one or two days, sync or MOS?, $1000 to $4000. Insurance? Sound?Crew? Sets? Permits? Crane/dolly? G&E package/truck? Editor/Post production?

$7510 sounds like a bargain, even if everyone works for free (and you still have to feed 'em).

I just finished shooting a 2 min 35mm commercial, 10:1 ratio. I own the cameras, dolly, jib, G&E, locations, etc. No paid production crew, my son and I did it ourselves. Rawstock was left over from another project, so no cost there. I expect to spend about $3000 to get it finished.

It might be helpful to do some budgeting on your real costs before embarking on this project.
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#6 Geovane Marquez

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 12:58 PM

10:1 shooting ratio, 2000' rawstock, $1300. Processing, $200, telecine $1000, camera rental- one or two days, sync or MOS?, $1000 to $4000. Insurance? Sound?Crew? Sets? Permits? Crane/dolly? G&E package/truck? Editor/Post production?

$7510 sounds like a bargain, even if everyone works for free (and you still have to feed 'em).

I just finished shooting a 2 min 35mm commercial, 10:1 ratio. I own the cameras, dolly, jib, G&E, locations, etc. No paid production crew, my son and I did it ourselves. Rawstock was left over from another project, so no cost there. I expect to spend about $3000 to get it finished.

It might be helpful to do some budgeting on your real costs before embarking on this project.


Thanks my dude! =D
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#7 Adam Hunt

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Posted 09 November 2010 - 07:37 PM

or you could shoot on 7D, that'd bring your costs to like $4. :P


Yeah, and it will look like it cost $4.
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#8 K Borowski

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Posted 09 November 2010 - 07:40 PM

A friendly reminder that 35mm ends are still readily available, unlike S16. . .
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#9 Adam Hunt

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Posted 09 November 2010 - 08:54 PM

10:1 shooting ratio, 2000' rawstock, $1300. Processing, $200, telecine $1000, camera rental- one or two days, sync or MOS?, $1000 to $4000. Insurance? Sound?Crew? Sets? Permits? Crane/dolly? G&E package/truck? Editor/Post production?

$7510 sounds like a bargain, even if everyone works for free (and you still have to feed 'em).

I just finished shooting a 2 min 35mm commercial, 10:1 ratio. I own the cameras, dolly, jib, G&E, locations, etc. No paid production crew, my son and I did it ourselves. Rawstock was left over from another project, so no cost there. I expect to spend about $3000 to get it finished.

It might be helpful to do some budgeting on your real costs before embarking on this project.


I have to disagree. In my experience the costs of shooting an indie short are way different than shooting a commercial.

I'm basing these numbers on what it would cost here in Toronto. It's Canadian dollars, but there is little difference in the Canadian/US dollar these days so it should be the same or slightly less. You can probably get better deals in LA than in Toronto as well.

Also this is just the cost of shooting/post so all the other expenses of the film you will have to figure out based on the content of your script.

It also depends on how you finish the film. You have options ranging from an HDCAM finish to an HDCAM-SR DI with film-out, or a full fledged 2k DI. An HDCAM finish is cheapest, but if you are going to major festivals a 35mm print has a lot of benefits.



Film/processing:

Buy short-ends. Find a good SE reseller (easy to find in LA) or talk to people you know working on big 35mm shoots, they can often steer you in the direction of who to talk to to get left over film from that shoot. Short-ends usually cost about $0.18/foot but can be as low as $0.05-$0.10 if you find a really good deal.

Depending on the camera you are able to get you could shoot 4, 3, or 2-perf. If you are shooting 1.85:1 then shoot 3-perf unless you get a deal on a 4-perf camera that makes up for the difference in stock costs. If you are shooting 2.39:1 then 2-perf is a good option to consider if you can get a 2-perf camera.

4-perf:
10:1 shooting ratio = 1800 feet = $0.18/foot = $324 for stock
process 1800 feet = $216

3-perf:
10:1 shooting ratio = 1350 feet = $0.18/foot = $243 for stock
process 1350 feet = $162

2-perf:
10:1 shooting ratio = 900 feet = $0.18/foot = $162 for stock
process 900 feet = $108



Camera:

If you need a sync-sound camera you can expect to pay around $1500-$1700/day for a complete kit (in my experience anyway). If you know somebody at the rental house or they take pity on you or something it could be less. This will likely be an older camera like a BL4 or a SuperAmerica but it's just fine for what you are doing. An Arricam ST or a Panavision Millenium is just luxury you don't need. Your film will still look just as great when shot with a BL4 in the hands of a good DOP.

If you don't need sync-sound the costs can drop considerably. Check out film co-ops as well as the regular rental houses. There is one here in Toronto that rents a great 35mm MOS for around $50/day (I know it sounds too good to be true but I kid you not).



Post:

Telecine to HDCAM will probably cost about $350/hour in the suite. For 20min worth of footage you are talking about 1 hour (they usually give you an estimate based on 3x the running time). This will include your colour grade so no extra cost for that. Worst case it might be 1.5 hours.

Then about $125/hour X 0.5 hours ($75) to get the HDCAM tape captured to a hard drive as Uncompressed 1920x1080 Quicktime files. You can cut the whole thing in Final Cut and do your VFX work on the QT files (or convert them to DPXs). Then take a QT of your finished film back to the lab to get the whole thing dumped back to HDCAM for $150/hour X 0.5 hours.

If your destination is DVD/Blu-ray/TV or you are satisfied with screening at festivals from HDCAM this is a nice cheap solution. If you want a 35mm print it will raise the cost quite a bit, but not as much as you might think. Here is a good article on a cheaper alternative to a 2k DI that still produces high quality results: http://motion.kodak....fullyEsther.htm

All of these numbers are based on my best guess as to the deals rental houses and labs will give you as an indie filmmaker. If they know you or your DOP knows them or something you may get better deals. But I think it's likely to be in this ball-park based on my experience. To get any kind of an accurate picture you will need to investigate the options available in your area and get actual quotes. Then of course budget the rest of your film.



I wouldn't shy away from 35mm. It usually ends up being a lot less expensive than you think. I know guys who regularly shoot great looking music videos on 35mm with total budgets in the $5000-$7000 range. So I can't see a 2min film being MORE than that. And stay away from RED. The reality is that RED tends to actually cost MORE for a small project (like a music video or a 2min film like yours), and it's safe to say that it will look better with 35mm.

And of course in all of this it has to be said that you need to get yourself a good DOP. If you are shooting 35mm you want somebody who knows how to utilize it's potential to make your film look great.

Also it couldn't hurt to get a good post supervisor on board to work out all the workflow details for you and talk to the lab. For a low budget thing like this you will probably need to woo him or her into working for free, but you never know. Pitch them your script, if they find it interesting they may be more than willing to help you.
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#10 Adam Hunt

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Posted 09 November 2010 - 08:59 PM

I have a two page short I would like to shoot on 35mm. What would be the cost? There is some CGI.


BTW, why don't you elaborate on your film a bit. It would give a better picture of what you would need to pull it off. Is it a quirky little art film that can be shot at one location with a minimum of cast/crew? Or is it a huge sci-fi epic packed into 2 min?
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#11 Michael Kubaszak

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Posted 09 November 2010 - 09:13 PM

Yeah, and it will look like it cost $4.



Not really. Honestly I was joking, hence the smiley. I am a 'film' guy. I've shot all of my films on actual film. 1 on reg 16 and 2 on 35. /film street cred

If you have good lenses, say zeiss primes and know how to light for a particular DSLR it assuredly will NOT look like it cost $4. I wish I would've shot my last movie on a 7D, it would've saved my about $1000 of my own money(I could have a really tricked out Magliner for work :) ) You use whatever tools you have and try to make the best images possible, be it a 7D, an HVX-200, or some Lowell tota kits(eww).
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#12 Michael Kubaszak

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Posted 09 November 2010 - 09:16 PM

A friendly reminder that 35mm ends are still readily available, unlike S16. . .



Can you recommend any place in particular? I know raw stock in NY closed. I was sad, I got really good short ends and recans from them.
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#13 Adam Hunt

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Posted 09 November 2010 - 09:24 PM

Can you recommend any place in particular? I know raw stock in NY closed. I was sad, I got really good short ends and recans from them.


Here in Toronto Certified Film is a good place: http://www.certifiedfilm.com/ I believe the owner of Certified Film is actually a member of this forum.

As for New York/LA I don't know places specifically because I'm in Toronto, but I know some DOPs here who buy large amounts of SEs from somewhere in LA on a regular basis, not sure of the exact company though. It's true reselling film isn't the business it used to be but it seems the top 1 or 2 operations in each city are still around and doing alright.
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#14 Adam Hunt

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Posted 09 November 2010 - 09:47 PM

Not really. Honestly I was joking, hence the smiley. I am a 'film' guy. I've shot all of my films on actual film. 1 on reg 16 and 2 on 35. /film street cred

If you have good lenses, say zeiss primes and know how to light for a particular DSLR it assuredly will NOT look like it cost $4. I wish I would've shot my last movie on a 7D, it would've saved my about $1000 of my own money(I could have a really tricked out Magliner for work :) ) You use whatever tools you have and try to make the best images possible, be it a 7D, an HVX-200, or some Lowell tota kits(eww).


Well to each his own, but I think DSLRs are great in theory but are not that great in practice. Every time I see the same DOP shoot something on 35mm and then something else on 7D, the 35mm thing always looks WAY better. Yeah it's kind of comparing apples to oranges because they may have been going for a different look for each of those shoots, but there seems to be a consistent pattern in favour of the 35mm.

I don't think DSLR is in any way a substitute for 35mm (DOF is not the only thing that makes a look). Look at the drastic difference in the 'House' episode that was shot on DSLR compared to the rest of the series which is 35mm. And they were using high ends lenses, etc., etc., and I would bet they were pushing DSLR as far as it would go.

That being said DSLR does have it's appropriate uses. Camera Music is a good example: http://www.aux.tv/show/CAMERA-MUSIC/ It's just a guy hanging out with musicians and the DSLR gives it an intimate look. It doesn't look like 35mm though. But that's cool, it's it's own thing in this case.

As for saving you would save $1000, I look at it like this: When you are making low-budget short it is usually as a calling card to get you bigger projects. So I think it's the worst time to cut corners. That $1000 was money well invested in my opinion. Shooting on 35mm not only makes your film look it's best but it says you are serious about filmmaking and that you are out to make the best quality product you can. I know the temptation is there to just jump in and do it, but I think it's worth it to wait and save up the extra cash to make it a better looking product. You will be wasting a lot more that $1000 if you make something that looks like you cut corners on it.

I know DSLR is having a huge popularity fad these days, but I think people are too quick to assume that DSLRs are a going to look like 35mm or that 35mm is out of their price range. A while ago there was a huge onslaught of bands requesting that DOPs shoot their music videos on 7D, but then they saw the results and now most of them are asking for 35mm again, and willing to pay for it because it's money well invested. 7D actually seems to have scared them away from anything digital.

Anyway, that's just my two cents on DSLRs.
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#15 Michael Kubaszak

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Posted 09 November 2010 - 11:40 PM

Jesus Christ dude. I DO NOT think DSLR footage is a substitute for 35mm. I don't know why you are on such a crusade. Shooting on a 7D compared to 35mm doesn't necessarily mean you are cutting corners. And honestly I don't need you preaching the benefits of 35, I've shot it, I love it. But it's not a great solution for every indie filmmaker out there that wants to make a short.

In TODAY'S world, as a cinematographer, you have to be able to use a number of high-end digital cameras, 16mm and 35mm, prosumer video cameras, as well as DSLR's. Sometimes you have to use camera's you don't like.

Am I glad I shot 35 instead of 7D? Yes, but if I shot 7D I'd be able to throw that money towards a feature(which will most certainly be shot on a 7D. If money wasn't a factor I'd shoot film every time.
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#16 Adam Hunt

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Posted 10 November 2010 - 12:03 AM

Jesus Christ dude. I DO NOT think DSLR footage is a substitute for 35mm. I don't know why you are on such a crusade. Shooting on a 7D compared to 35mm doesn't necessarily mean you are cutting corners. And honestly I don't need you preaching the benefits of 35, I've shot it, I love it. But it's not a great solution for every indie filmmaker out there that wants to make a short.


Ok, I was just trying to give some helpful advice to somebody who WANTS to shoot 35mm. You were making it sound like he could just shoot 7D with no consequence. I simply responded with my opinion based on my experience with DSLRs and 35mm. I thought I made it quite clear that it was just that, my opinion. This is not about YOU. I am not invested in what format YOU shoot on, and quite frankly I think it's kind of egotistical to think that response was all about you. I stated that if I was in your shoes I would see the extra cost of 35mm (if there even was one) as a worthwhile investment. If you don't see it the same way then fine, go and shoot all your projects on 7D from now on. It's you choice. It doesn't affect me or anyone else on this forum.

I'm really not interested in a 7D vs. 35mm debate and I'm sorry I walked into that. So before this thread gets hijacked lets refocus to what this thread was about. Somebody (not you) said they wanted to shoot their short on 35mm. This is his thread and If any of us have some advice that might be beneficial in regards to helping him do that, let's post it. But lets not start telling him he should just go and shoot something different, and tell him that it's too expensive when that's not necessarily true. Lets help him find a way to shoot the format he wants. In my experience it is quite possible to shoot a low-budget short on 35mm and it can in some case prove to be cheaper than digital formats.

If you want to debate DSLR/35mm there are endless threads in which to do that. I'm sorry I participated. Let's keep this on topic. And the topic is what would it cost to shoot a 2min short on 35mm. NOT should he shoot it on 35mm or DSLR.
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#17 Evan Andrew John Prosofsky

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Posted 10 November 2010 - 12:23 AM

Adam, you say there's a co-op in Toronto that rents 35mm MOS stuff for 50 bucks a day? I live in Edmonton and the only place is FAVA. Unfortunately, their 35 III is broken and doesn't do variable frame rates any more. Not especially helpful being that most MOS cameras are used for things like Music VIdeos which often employ variable frame rate stuff. Whats the name of this rental house? Cool! Thanks
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#18 Adam Hunt

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Posted 10 November 2010 - 12:52 AM

Adam, you say there's a co-op in Toronto that rents 35mm MOS stuff for 50 bucks a day? I live in Edmonton and the only place is FAVA. Unfortunately, their 35 III is broken and doesn't do variable frame rates any more. Not especially helpful being that most MOS cameras are used for things like Music VIdeos which often employ variable frame rate stuff. Whats the name of this rental house? Cool! Thanks


The place is called LIFT (http://www.lift.on.ca/). It's a co-op not a rental house. You join as a member and put in a small number of volunteer hours then get access to lots of equipment and great rates. Not to mention everybody who works there are filmmakers and artists themselves and are more than helpful. But I'm guessing it's a similar deal with your place.

I think you can rent without the volunteer hours but the rates are much, much lower if you are a member. I don't know if they would rent to somebody out of province or the logistics of that, but it's certainly worth calling them and asking about it. They might even be able to point you to somewhere closer that is an alternative to FAVA.

They have an Arri III that is in great shape. It's in the $300-$400 range per day. The $45/day (for the whole kit) camera is a Konvas 2M. I've seen plenty of footage from both cameras and there isn't a real noticeable difference in quality. The Konvas has more gate-weave than the Arri III so it wouldn't be my first choice for a VFX camera, but that being said I have worked with plates shot on that camera. For anything other than VFX the gate-weave is not noticeable.

The big advantage to the Konvas is that it is much smaller and lighter than the Arri III. However if I remember LIFTs Konvas doesn't have a video assist (although many 2Ms are retrofitted with them). That may or may not be an issue depending on how you are shooting.

Actually here is a music video shot with LIFT's Konvas:
View on Vimeo
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#19 Adam Hunt

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Posted 10 November 2010 - 12:57 AM

Unfortunately, their 35 III is broken and doesn't do variable frame rates any more.


Come to think of it I think LIFT's Arri III had a issues a few years ago and had some repairs done. I'm not sure if Karl fixed it up in-house or if they sent it to somebody, but it might be worth suggesting to the people at FAVA that they see if LIFT can point them in the direction of where to get it repaired affordably.
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#20 K Borowski

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Posted 10 November 2010 - 12:24 PM

Can you recommend any place in particular? I know raw stock in NY closed. I was sad, I got really good short ends and recans from them.


Film Emporium still has a NY location. I'm sure there are others. Even if not, you can always have it shipped, wwiith a liberal application of DO NOT X_RAY stickers. Winter is the best time of the year for shippign film anyway :-D


Adam, I am a 35mm Diehard, but you can't say Michael is full of sh** for pointing out a budget alternative, especially when the original poster thinks $7500 is too much. I highly doubt you'd be raising such a fuss if it were S16 pitched instead. I personalllly hate the look of digital images in many many circumstances, but some people don't. What if this project is for an interrnet viral or even standard definition? Would you still be advocating 35mm? You point out budget alternatives that are only available to you (there might be a co-op he can join and use, but almost certainly not with a camera for $50 per day).

And he probably isn't shooting MOS anyway, so right there is the potential for $1500 to 3000.


You act as if it is 35mm or nothing. And that anyone who doesn't agree is an idiot. That is simply naive. As an aside, I would try to begt borrow cameras, find cheap/free stock, etc. But some people don't have those connections/skills.
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