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K40 Super 8 UK short Official Cannes Selection


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#1 xoct

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Posted 20 May 2005 - 10:54 AM

It's true that this year there is a Super 8 film (shot on K40, no less) from the UK, called "The Man Who Met Himself," that was selected to play in the shorts category at Cannes this year. The film has gotten press coverage by the BBC and The Guardian. Unfortunately, none of the articles mentioned that it was shot on Kodachrome...Here is their website:

the man who met himself

It was shot with the Canon 1014XLS. Here is a good interview with filmmaker Ben Crowe, plus a photo of him with the camera:


Ben Crowe interview

Edited by xoct, 20 May 2005 - 11:04 AM.

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#2 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 20 May 2005 - 06:23 PM

It's true that this year there is a Super 8 film (shot on K40, no less) from the UK, called "The Man Who Met Himself," that was selected to play in the shorts category at Cannes this year.  The film has gotten press coverage by the BBC and The Guardian.  Unfortunately, none of the articles mentioned that it was shot on Kodachrome...Here is their website:

the man who met himself

It was shot with the Canon 1014XLS.  Here is a good interview with filmmaker Ben Crowe, plus a photo of him with the camera:
Ben Crowe interview

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>



And when I suggested that making a film with the recently suspended Kodachrome 40 Super that became a finalist at Cannes (beating out 3000 other mini-dv, 16mm and 35mm projects) as being the "Seabiscuit" of 2005, the idea was met with stone cold silence on another super-8 forum.

I guess the gimmicks only work when art imitates life, but never when it's actually happening.
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#3 Giles Perkins

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Posted 21 May 2005 - 09:44 AM

Alessandro,

I agree and noted the stoney silence also - the fact of the matter is that despite its technical qualities (film/video/cameras etc.) the film qualified - which is fantastic in itself. The fact that it was on Super 8 and shot on K40 just makes it all the better. I think it a fitting tribute to K40 that it was recognised at Cannes (through the efforts of Ben Crowe and his crew) considering its in the swansong of its life!

Giles P.
www.onsuper8.org
Super 8 - forty years young in 2005
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#4 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 21 May 2005 - 10:00 AM

Alessandro,

I agree and noted the stoney silence also - the fact of the matter is that despite its technical qualities (film/video/cameras etc.) the film qualified - which is fantastic in itself. The fact that it was on Super 8 and shot on K40 just makes it all the better. I think it a fitting tribute to K40 that it was recognised at Cannes (through the efforts of Ben Crowe and his crew) considering its in the swansong of its life!

Giles P.
www.onsuper8.org
Super 8 - forty years young in 2005

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


You guys are overworking this K40 angle. It just means that Super-8 can compete with other formats for making short films that get into major film festivals. Well, honestly, that's not news. Anyone could have told you that.

I'm happy for the guy who made this film, but you're doing him a disservice to make some sort of connection between using K40 Super-8 and getting into Cannes. The reason his film got in was because it was a better short than many of the others submitted, no matter what format the others used, even 35mm. Does that mean that Super-8 is technically just as good as 35mm? Of course not. So WHAT is the meaning of these posts? To tell us that Super-8 can artistically compete against other formats? That you can make a good short film in Super-8? Isn't all of that obvious? Shorts shot in Pixelvision have gotten into major film festivals, after all.
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#5 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 21 May 2005 - 02:36 PM

You guys are overworking this K40 angle.  It just means that Super-8 can compete with other formats for making short films that get into major film festivals.  Well, honestly, that's not news.  Anyone could have told you that.

I'm happy for the guy who made this film, but you're doing him a disservice to make some sort of connection between using K40 Super-8 and getting into Cannes. The reason his film got in was because it was a better short than many of the others submitted, no matter what format the others used, even 35mm. Does that mean that Super-8 is technically just as good as 35mm? Of course not.  So WHAT is the meaning of these posts? To tell us that Super-8 can artistically compete against other formats? That you can make a good short film in Super-8? Isn't all of that obvious?  Shorts shot in Pixelvision have gotten into major film festivals, after all.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>



Gosh, David, that almost sounds like you are not giving them credit. Did you even see the movie Seabiscuit? How can one take a reference to such an inspiring movie as SeaBiscuit and imply that I'm taking away from their effort? In a side note, when Seabiscuit ran on television Kodak ran a commerical for their BLACK AND WHITE 35mm still stocks. No mention of Kodachrome. The commercial came off as jarring to me because the movie was shot in color and suddenly these very uninspiring black and white shots appeared in the Kodak commercial.

When mini-dv advocates rave about the one in thousands of mini-dv productions that wins a festival or some other prestigious award, there are no naysayers accusing the press articles as implying that it could only have been done in the format that it was done. In fact, MANY times, the article actually implies that if not for mini-dv, or HD, they could not have made their film.

Now there is a chance for a Super-8 film to use that kind of same publicity, the kind used by HD, mini-dv, and you have to come up with a negative angle.

Nobody knows what would have happened if they had shot on mini-dv. Perhaps they would have shot so much footage they never finish the project. The fact is they made finalist over several thousand other projects and they shot it on Super-8 kodachrome 40.

-------------------------

If you are implying that the Super-8 kodachrome 40 option is no big deal and is just as viable as shooting a production any other way, then perhaps Kodak hasn't actually assessed their Super-8 division as being a viable, low budget FILM alternative for beginners, and one that is an entry point for 16mm and 35mm film production in the same manner that mini-dv is becoming an obvious portal to the world of HD.
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#6 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 21 May 2005 - 07:56 PM

You're so wrapped up in your issues regarding K40 that you can't begin to make a coherent argument or follow someone else's. I'm not sure why I'm even bothering to continue this discussion -- it's why I was silent when this thread started.

Super-8 and K40 are two different things. K40 is being obsoleted. Super-8 is not being obsoleted. Kodak is even coming out with a new Super-8 stock that is close to the quality of K40.

And DV is also an alternative. A very successful one.

And many people shooting DV don't want to shoot Super-8. I know you find that hard to understand but the reality will become undeniable as the years pass. Digital aint going away. Super-8 is an alternative to DV but it will NEVER reach the same kind of usage, not when it requires separate sound recording and a telecine transfer to be cut on people's home computers. It doesn't fit into the way many no-budget people like to work. You can't make Super-8 more convenient than DV no matter how hard you try. It's the same reasons digital still cameras have taken up such a huge marketshare. You can't put the toothpaste back into the tube.

You're an advocate, and as such, you filter everything through that worldview. We all do that, but not all of us do that in regards to Super-8 and K40 in particular.

I love Super-8. I've probably shot more of it than you have. I wish it would never go away. But I don't see it as a "superior" replacement for DV just because it is film, not digital, because I don't have a bias against digital. Both are tools with their own strengths and weaknesses. Both can produce interesting, artistic images.

It's great news that this guy got a film into Cannes. And I'm sure it probably looks interesting.

As regards to DV or HD generating news for getting into festivals or theaters, that's becoming old news. Lately some digital movies have gotten into theaters where hardly a reviewer bothered to mention the digital origination, not because it looked good or bad, but because it's become part of the norm now. They'd rather talk about content and maybe whether it looked good or not, but not about the technology behind the movie. Which is how it should be perhaps.

If I made a post saying "some DV short film got into Sundance!!!" you could hear the yawns. We're beyond that now. Why? Because it doesn't really matter, does it? THAT'S the reason so few people have commented on this thread. Because it doesn't surprise them one way or another that this short was shot on Super-8. We all know people are still making shorts in Super-8. We all know that odds are some of them are good shorts and might get into festivals. So all we can do is read the first post and nod and say "OK, that's nice." It's hardly earthshattering news. Do you think some of us here are so stupid as to think that an artistic short film can't be made in Super-8???

Has it occurred to you that if you can't convince a fellow lover of Super-8 and K40 of your arguments, there must be something wrong? I own a Super-8 camera -- I don't even own a DV camera!
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#7 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 22 May 2005 - 12:33 AM

David, your comments seem to me to be both hostile and condescending. If Super-8 film were as "accepted" as you believe, Kodak would have made more of an effort to save Kodachrome rather than announced it's demise on the 40th anniversary of super-8 film.

Film will probably become what Mac has become. Mac is only between 2% and 4% of the total computer market, yet Mac is still a player. I'm not insisting that Kodachrome 40 ever be as popular as mini-dv, it doesn't have to be. But somehow, the idea of being only 2-4% of the market for film is thought to mean the death of film. That is a ridiculous notion yet one that becomes closer to being cemented when people like you fight the idea of promoting the fact that a Cannes short film was shot with kodachrome 40 super-8.

As I stated before, mini-dv productions and HD productions are routinely publicized in articles as being trend setting and saviors to the low budget film maker who couldn't afford 35mm or 16mm, yet you seem to be putting up quite an argument that it's now irrelevant that "The Man who met Himself" was shot on Super-8 film. The fact it was shot on Kodachrome 40 super-8 film just gives it an extra "Seabiscuit" edge to it.

As I have stated elsewhere, the digital video formats have given everyone a chance to shoot as much footage as they want and try to make a great project. Film, on the other hand, promotes the idea of planning your shots ahead of time and shooting what you need by knowing what you need to shoot.

Both styles are very acceptable in this day and age. Both styles of film making should enjoy their moments in the sun when they achieve success. Or are the moments in the sun only to be reserved for mini-dv and HD projects?
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#8 Scot McPhie

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Posted 22 May 2005 - 05:24 AM

I think David is pretty well right - everyone knows great things can be done on Super 8 - this is hardly the first or last Super 8 film to get industry recognition.

I think Allesandro you're really trying to promote the K40 element in it - but it was hardly picked because it was shot on K40. The only way you could promote the K40 angle is if it was impossible for the guy to have made it on any other Super 8 stock - which I assume you don't know.

I really think Super 8 will still be accesable to all after the end K40.

Scot
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#9 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 22 May 2005 - 09:52 AM

this is getting ridiculous guys.

Canon XL1's are used on a production that achieves success and then the use of the Canon is used to promote articles touting that it was a canon digital camera that contributed to the videomakers success. HD cameras are constantly being touted as the new wave and better way to make a film and are hyped as such.

Technology drives promotion which drives stories which inspires people to use those formats. It's a breath of "Seabiscuit" fresh air when a not so typical filmmaking avenue is used to make a film that becomes a finalist as a Cannes film festival short.

You can say that everybody knows about the super-8 option, so I'll ask, cite your statistics that prove that everyone knows about super-8 and therefore it does not need to be promoted.
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#10 Sam Wells

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Posted 22 May 2005 - 10:34 AM

Here's your options.

Shoot 7280 in Super 8.

Shoot Kodachrome 40 in 16mm.

Give up.

I'm sorry I'm "pro-Kodachrome" but you are not making a succinct argumet. How on earth is Kodak's replacing one reversal S8 emulsion with another one retarding the cause of S8, or the use of film vs DV ?

FWIW I saw a doc yesterday, second time I've seen it. Lots of archival footage from the Vietnam war, including 8mm Kodachrome and 16mm ECO 7255.

The Koda 8mm was ok. The 16mm ECO in the video transfer was beautiful. That's an Ektachrome emulsion from the sixties. Imagine what E-6 could do.

I sympathise but these are not real world arguments you are making.

-Sam
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#11 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 22 May 2005 - 10:36 AM

You can say that everybody knows about the super-8 option, so I'll ask, cite your statistics that prove that everyone knows about super-8 and therefore it does not need to be promoted.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


The point is that you're promoting it HERE... in a cinematography forum... in a Super-8 discussion group. You honestly think the majority HERE haven't heard of Super-8??? Every heard the phrase "bringing coals to Newcastle"?

But promote away if you must. Just don't be surprised when "the idea was met with stone cold silence" anymore. The only reason I got into this discussion was to explain to you WHY there was silence. I'll go back to being silent on this thread now...
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#12 Stephen Williams

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Posted 22 May 2005 - 10:39 AM

This may be of interest,

http://www.petitiononline.com/k40/

Stephen
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#13 Bob Last

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Posted 22 May 2005 - 03:26 PM

Someone shot a deer in the leg. They banned the bullet and let the man and his gun go!

This can't be. The bullet alone did not cause the injury to the deer!

What if the man used another type of bullet, could he hit the deer right at the heart? Possible. Yes. No.

We'll never know. We'll never know.

Don't forget that the film type is only one element of the whole short. Do not forget the person who composed the shot and his camera!
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#14 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 22 May 2005 - 03:36 PM

The premise that Super-8 is as established and trusted as 16mm or 35mm is an erroneous one. If it were true, Kodak would have gotten more feedback then it did from it's super-8 film users. Of course such good news should be posted here.


But lets be clear, I didn't start this topic David. I had several days to post the topic here and I didn't. My "stone cold silence comment" had to do with another forum, not this one.
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#15 xoct

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Posted 22 May 2005 - 11:35 PM

Just for the record, I started this thread not as an advocate of the K40 stock, but because I thought it was great that someone was able to get as far as they did on our special gauge film. I don't know of any other Super 8 films that have ever gotten to Cannes and I thought it was inspiring. So congrats to Ben and I hope we get to see it soon.
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#16 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 23 May 2005 - 03:18 AM

Just for the record, I started this thread not as an advocate of the K40 stock, but because I thought it was great that someone was able to get as far as they did on our special gauge film.  I don't know of any other Super 8 films that have ever gotten to Cannes and I thought it was inspiring.  So congrats to Ben and I hope we get to see it soon.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>



That cracks me up.

I've NEVER, I mean NEVER, NEVER, NEVER, EVER, have read a story about a mini-dv or HD project that has achieved success where the filmmaker (or someone else mentioning the story) actually downplayed that it was shot on mini-dv or HD.
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#17 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 23 May 2005 - 03:47 AM

That cracks me up.

I've NEVER, I mean NEVER, NEVER, NEVER, EVER, have read a story about a mini-dv or HD project that has achieved success where the filmmaker (or someone else mentioning the story) actually downplayed that it was shot on mini-dv or HD.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


In interviews, director Nicole Holofcener downplayed the use of HD for making "Lovely and Amazing". She had no particular interest in shooting the movie digitally; it's just that her financing stipulated that it had to be shot digitally. So she picked the best digital camera her budget could afford, but after the movie was made, she simply said "well, it still would have looked better had we shot it in 35mm." She thought HD was acceptable but she was not exactly hyping the digital aspect much and she didn't talk much about it. It was sort of irrelevant to her project -- she just didn't have a choice because of where the money was coming from.

There are plenty of filmmakers who made a feature in DV who wished they could have afforded to shoot it in film. And some even admit as much in interviews, but generally, no one is going to say something negative about their own project to the press, like "oh, I'm not really happy about the way it looks..."

Look, the norm for feature films is 35mm. So anytime someone shoots in something else and gets distribution -- whether Super-8, Super-16, DV, HD -- THAT becomes something that journalists want to talk about.

By the way, why weren't you more vocal when an entire feature -- "Greendale", made by Neil Young -- was shot in Super-8 and got theatrical distribution? That's a lot more newsworthy than a short film.
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#18 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 23 May 2005 - 04:17 AM

In interviews, director Nicole Holofcener downplayed the use of HD for making "Lovely and Amazing".  She had no particular interest in shooting the movie digitally; it's just that her financing stipulated that it had to be shot digitally.  So she picked the best digital camera her budget could afford, but after the movie was made, she simply said "well, it still would have looked better had we shot it in 35mm."  She thought HD was acceptable but she was not exactly hyping the digital aspect much and she didn't talk much about it. It was sort of irrelevant to her project -- she just didn't have a choice because of where the money was coming from.

There are plenty of filmmakers who made a feature in DV who wished they could have afforded to shoot it in film.  And some even admit as much in interviews, but generally, no one is going to say something negative about their own project to the press, like "oh, I'm not really happy about the way it looks..."

Look, the norm for feature films is 35mm. So anytime someone shoots in something else and gets distribution -- whether Super-8, Super-16, DV, HD -- THAT becomes something that journalists want to talk about.

By the way, why weren't you more vocal when an entire feature -- "Greendale", made by Neil Young -- was shot in Super-8 and got theatrical distribution?  That's a lot more newsworthy than a short film.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


OK, now I've heard of one story and can't use my never never never line again.

Perhaps David you could lead a new revolution of format agnostics. It would put the filmmaker back on top and put the importance back on the filmmaker rather than the format they shot on.

As for Neil Young, it was cool what he did, yet slightly disappointing also. I think he used a Eumig nautica for his above water movie. Perhaps I'm disappointed because he too is format agnostic in a sea that swallows up the format agnostics and spits out battalions of digital lemmings.
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#19 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 23 May 2005 - 10:28 AM

I'm sorry for being hard on you, but I just have a problem with a cinematography forum being used for promotion or to service a cause in the same way that a magazine article would -- just a philosophy I have about forums, which I believe should be more down to earth about the nuts and bolts of filmmaking, less about "selling" something. But perhaps I've been too nitpicky about your posts.
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