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The Love Witch


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#181 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 20 March 2017 - 12:10 AM

Ohh an interview with MR David Mullen ASC. :)
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#182 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 20 March 2017 - 12:59 AM

And I lit my own interview and shot it on my Sony NEX6...
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#183 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 20 March 2017 - 01:14 AM

#filmlife #gangster lol

 

Seriously, though, that's awesome.

God I had to do that long ago when i was (though i still am) young and really dumb for my buddy's DVD special features of his first film.

That was an embarrassment i'm glad wasn't digitized afterwards.

 

Much looking forward to picking it up for your interview David.

 

P.s. were you working with  Lane Luper recently as an AC?


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#184 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 20 March 2017 - 08:48 AM

Yes, Lane is on my show.
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#185 Raissa Contreras

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Posted 20 March 2017 - 01:55 PM

The Love Witch is coming back to Baltimore! YAY!!! May 18 at The Charles - Baltimore's arthouse. Excited to see it on the big screen!!


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#186 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 20 March 2017 - 02:22 PM

That's great. give him a big hello from me next time you see him. He's a solid dude and one of my all time favorite A/cs.


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#187 Todd Anderson

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Posted 21 March 2017 - 01:13 PM

David, 

 
Two things:
 
1) I finally got around to watching the DVD of “"Ritual" that I purchased. Wow, what a beautiful look with the Agfa stock. And just beautifully lit in general. It is too bad there is no way to convince the rights holders to make a 2K scan of the negative for a limited run as a blu-ray release. I suppose they unfortunately would feel they may not see the return they would like. I’m not sure how difficult it would be for yourself and the director to throw together a Kickstarter page for such a proposal, but I wonder if that is a feasible option? But it is a pretty interesting film and holds together very well for what you said was only a 300K budget at the time. Do you recall how many interior and exterior shooting days you had at the actual home location? And do you recall the cost per day at that location? Such a beautiful property and adds so much production value. I’m sure the expense would be five times for such a location now in the Los Angeles area. 
 
2) I received the blu-ray of ‘Love Witch’ in the mail yesterday. I was back late, so I was only able to watch the first forty minutes of the film, but the transfer looked incredible, as did the look and feel of the film (I loved the tea room scene with the pinks. The close-ups on the lead actress looked amazing). Did you say the digital transfer of the blu-ray was sourced from a 2K scan of a color timed IP? Very nice textural quality. Great to see a 35mm (very) independent feature film of this nature being made in a time when it is too easy to just resort to digital. The extra effort really got as close as modern day film stock / production option wise possible to that 1950’s look. Wonderful.
 
 
Best,
Todd

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#188 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 21 March 2017 - 08:44 PM

Yes, I think "The Love Witch" was mastered for home video and DCP from a 2K scan from a timed IP using a Lasergraphics scanner at Cinelicious.

 

"Ritual" was shot in 3 weeks, mostly in the same house. I don't know what the location cost but it was a mansion in Malibu that had been used for that Bruce Willis movie "The Color of Night".


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#189 Todd Anderson

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Posted 22 March 2017 - 01:05 PM

David, thank you for the additional information on 'Ritual'. It sounded like a good production choice to have that location for most of those three weeks.

 

And I finally finished 'Love Witch'. The cinematography — and color pallet control and handling —was certainly a enormous part of the films success, in my opinion. And I really enjoyed your informative interview on the extras. Nice to hear both your articulation — and passion — for the films traditional approach, as well.


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#190 Justin Hayward

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Posted 06 May 2017 - 11:39 AM

One of my favorite movie podcasts...

 

Filmspotting SVU


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#191 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 24 May 2017 - 07:42 AM

https://filmschoolre...campaign=buffer
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#192 Mitch Lucas

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Posted 24 May 2017 - 08:37 AM

I was very inspired by the cinematography of this film! It seemed as though so many elements worked in conjunction with each other to achieve the period look. Beautiful job.


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#193 Ben Brahem Ziryab

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Posted 31 May 2017 - 03:44 AM

 

 

Congrats on the award David and on being on that list.

 

I looked at the stills from the Blu-ray review you posted and they look different from the print that I saw at the Cinefamily. The print was much richer in color saturation and contrast. It had a kind of velvety quality to it. Do you know if it was struck directly from the OCN?


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#194 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 31 May 2017 - 10:55 AM

Prints were all from the OCN and because I overexposed the negative, they printed at very high numbers.
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#195 Ravi Kiran

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Posted 27 June 2017 - 03:53 PM

Anthology Film Archives in NY is showing "The Love Witch" on 35mm on Thursday July 13th, as part of a double feature with Anna Biller's film "Viva."


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#196 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 27 June 2017 - 04:13 PM

That's interesting -- I'll be shooting that day in Brooklyn.


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#197 fatih yıkar

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Posted 01 July 2017 - 09:26 AM

That's interesting -- I'll be shooting that day in Brooklyn.

 

David,  did you know totally budget of ''Love witch''?  and how much of this money goes to cinematographic elements like (renting camera,film stock,photochemical finish,lighting etc)? 

 

I wonder because love witch indie movie i guess and nowadays every producer and director said they don't shot on film because ıt's to much expensive but I'm hardly believe that...


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#198 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 01 July 2017 - 09:54 AM

No I don't know the budget.

I do know that the lowest budgeted movie that I shot in 35mm had a 3-week shooting schedule, no name actors, and cost about $170,000.
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#199 Samuel Berger

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 10:59 PM

I always come back to this to see what would be done differently if this were shot on 16mm.


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#200 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 03 December 2017 - 12:32 AM

About 25 years ago, just after I graduated from CalArts and Anna Biller was attending, I shot about 2/3's of a short film for her in 16mm (I think Fuji 250T) called "The Hypnotist".  See:

 

http://www.lifeofast.../hypnotist.html

maxresdefault.jpg

 

 

hypnotist.jpg

 

Unfortunately I don't believe there is an modern scan of the negative, just an old telecine transfer to standard def video.  It was basically a student film and I did the camera work plus all the lighting with just the help of one other person, I so recall climbing ladders a lot of hang lamps.

 

Early on, I had discussed push-processing 35mm for "The Love Witch" to give me the grainier look of 1950's color negative stocks, but Anna did not want a grainy image.  I had just seen the blu-ray of "Bell, Book, and Candle" (shot by James Wong Howe) as part of my research into both witch movies and old 35mm color photography and was thinking about going for this sort of grain level:

 

bellbookcandle1.jpg

 

But when Anna said she didn't want grainy images, I sort of took the approach of making it feel more like a 3-strip Technicolor movie or a VistaVision movie instead, in terms of grain. I had just seen a restoration of "Tales of Hoffman" shot in 3-strip Technicolor and it was fairly fine-grained.

 

I already used the slowest speed tungsten stock for "The Love Witch" so I would have used the same stock if I were shooting it in 16mm (and less diffusion), unless I wanted to make life really hard for myself and shoot it all on 50 ASA daylight stock.  But part of the look of this movie was the use of fresnel lamps for lighting, which are hard to find in daylight-balance.  I ended up testing the new Mole-Richardson LED daylight fresnel and they worked pretty well for a few scenes that I had to shoot in daylight-balance, but the light is not quite as crisp as a tungsten fresnel.

 

The other issue with 16mm is the blow-up to 35mm -- we would have had to do a D.I. or just released it digitally, but Anna really wanted to do a film finish with a cut negative.  I've only done one Super-16 feature a long time ago and I recall how complex it was to blow it up to 35mm optically.  We had some opticals that had be to done in a 35mm optical printer and then those dupes were cut into the 35mm blow-up dupe negative and also optically reduced to Super-16 so they could be cut into the Super-16 negative for archival purposes.  I had to fly to Colorlab in Maryland to supervise the work.


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