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Estimating film stock needed for multi-cam television


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#1 Jay Young

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Posted 28 August 2016 - 08:16 AM

I'm a single camera type guy.  I've signed on to do a television pilot and am pushing for film over digital - director is on board. 

 

I've never really done much multi-cam but I also believe that's the most efficient way to go for this show. 

 

Is there a general guideline for gauging/estimating how many rolls for multi-cam?  I'm figuring I'm going to use about 1 roll per page, but then if I shoot three cameras that 60 rolls jumps up to 60 x 3 cameras.  Except I don't expect to use camera 3 for everything.  I guess I can always order more than I think would cover it - there is also the issue of Kodack's back order, and what is available. 

 

So do I order 180 rolls, or do I order 120 rolls assuming that I'll use camera 3 for about half the time I have the 2-cam setup going? 

 

Thoughts? 


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#2 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 28 August 2016 - 09:01 AM

I'd just double it for now, plan on getting some more later if necessary. Even with three cameras, there are times when you run only one camera.
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#3 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 28 August 2016 - 12:30 PM

I assume you're talking S16 eh? What does the script call for? Exteriors? practical interiors? Set's? 

 

Also 60 pages for a TV pilot? That's quite a lot. Most made-for-tv shows will be around 40 pages. Even cable/internet TV will be less then 60 pages. 

 

I think your prep idea of 60x3 is good because as you said, you wont be using the 3rd camera all the time. I spent years doing multicamera television shoots. It's pretty easy to manage two cameras, but the third can be sometimes difficult, mostly due to finding a decent shot.  I like having a good master wide, but you don't need to shoot every take with the 3rd camera. 


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#4 Jay Young

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Posted 29 August 2016 - 04:41 AM

I assume you're talking S16 eh? What does the script call for? Exteriors? practical interiors? Set's? 

 

 

yes, S16.  Script calls for Exteriors, Practical interiors, and one scene in which I have yet to figure out the best way to actually smash a truck into a doctors office... that might be a set build. The script reads like the cast will leave the current setup, so I think building the set pieces for the interiors would be a waste if they are only going to be seen in the pilot. 

 

The pilot is actually 56 1/2 pages, with 3 pages devoted to the teaser.  I'm just going with 60 for a little padding and because a lot of action takes place on a single page in some acts.  

 

My idea is to have two operators, likely myself and someone else, but on days when two operators are available, I'll run around with a Arri 16s on 100' loads or something else equally tiny to get something interesting - camera 3 will be whatever camera I can find  that's not a 416, and hopefully smaller than an SR. That may not work out, and I may be too busy to bother with it.   


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#5 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 29 August 2016 - 01:32 PM

Ok cool, yea sounds like your plan is solid. 

 

I always run an AC on my film shoots because it's nice to have someone clean stuff, load magazines and do the camera logs. So where a 3rd camera is nice to have, I'll just throw a competent AC on it. This gives them some seat time and I've found the AC's I've worked with, do a pretty good job operating because it's usually where they want to be, so they take extra care. So if you do have an AC, that's a good place to put them, on those occasions where a 3rd camera is necessary. Otherwise, like you said, run 2 cameras most of the time. As the cinematographer, it's nice to be looking through the critical lens at all times on a film shoot. 


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#6 Kenny N Suleimanagich

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Posted 29 August 2016 - 01:58 PM

If you can get them still, look into 800' loads. Aaton XTR and Arri SR3 had mags for them. 


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#7 Jay Young

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Posted 29 August 2016 - 05:34 PM

Ok cool, yea sounds like your plan is solid. 

 

I always run an AC on my film shoots because it's nice to have someone clean stuff, load magazines and do the camera logs. So where a 3rd camera is nice to have, I'll just throw a competent AC on it. This gives them some seat time and I've found the AC's I've worked with, do a pretty good job operating because it's usually where they want to be, so they take extra care. So if you do have an AC, that's a good place to put them, on those occasions where a 3rd camera is necessary. Otherwise, like you said, run 2 cameras most of the time. As the cinematographer, it's nice to be looking through the critical lens at all times on a film shoot. 

 

Yep.  I've got two!  

 

If you can get them still, look into 800' loads. Aaton XTR and Arri SR3 had mags for them. 

 

 

I've not seen 800' loads in the kodak catalogue, but I can always ask. 


Edited by Jay Young, 29 August 2016 - 05:35 PM.

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#8 Robin R Probyn

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Posted 29 August 2016 - 06:57 PM

Totally agree with Tyler re the camera assistant .. very least you dont want to have to wait around for mags to be reloaded.. you,ll only get about 11 mins off a 400ft roll..  you need someone to check the gate too.. no good its there a huge hair or scratch .. and as he says, a good one will be able to deal with loading 2 camera,s and still handle a 3rd camera.. and be happy and nervous :) to be there..


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#9 Gregg MacPherson

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Posted 29 August 2016 - 08:37 PM

Jay, what's on tv that's similar, in terms of the form, style, and the way it's constructed or put together. One needs to have a sense of that. Or is there some universal template for TV shows, and all advice is in reference to that....
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#10 Jay Young

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Posted 30 August 2016 - 02:42 PM

Jay, what's on tv that's similar, in terms of the form, style, and the way it's constructed or put together. One needs to have a sense of that. Or is there some universal template for TV shows, and all advice is in reference to that....

 

The Walking Dead?  That's the most recent show that has the same sort of form.  All the other shows are 35mm and don't quite have the same look that we're going for - not that TWD has that look either. 

I think television has a pretty standard format as far as producers/money is concerned - I could be wrong, I've not done much in the television world. 


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