This is an excellent short video about 16mm.
Jump to content
10 replies to this topic
Posted 11 April 2017 - 12:29 PM
Decent case for the format. Just seeing some of those clips reminded me why I love 16mm. Good point about it being a nice blend of 8mm and 35mm.
I would venture to say that if you are doing a feature, Kodak will probably get you a better deal than the list price on film and we know processing and transfer houses love those big projects and will probably come down a little for quantity.
Posted 11 April 2017 - 12:55 PM
Here is my response that I posted on vimeo:
Great video! As someone who runs a film school and shoots on film constantly, I just wanted to respond to some errors in your numbers. First thing first, camera rental houses charge a 3 day week for rental, it's not $1500/day is $4500/week. Second thing and this is critical, the digital cameras you mentioned are all 4k or higher resolution and equivalent so S35 frame size which is an entirely different world then Super 16. Third, Super 16mm glass is practically free to rent compared to S35mm glass. In fact, due to the lens barrel size of S35mm glass, they won't even fit on an SR3. So for an SR3 rental, you're using S16mm glass, which is A LOT cheaper to rent. For instance, I rent Aaton XTR S16 packages for $250/day including glass. This is on the low side admittedly, but there are plenty of rental houses who will work super deals on S16 cameras and lenses. Finally, the most critical thing that's not mentioned is post production cost. Film inherently costs less money to color because it already looks good coming off the scanner. So right away you have massive savings on post production compared to shooting digitally. Plus, no need for a DIT/hard drives/grading monitors on set, which are a time consuming and expensive thing that slows production down.
Having run these numbers dozens of times on more projects then I can remember, Super 16 shooting cost is about equivalent to shooting with a Red Dragon (4k mode), assuming you OWN the Super 16 cameras and lenses. The moment you start renting cameras and lenses, the Dragon becomes a cheaper package in the long run. This is why so many people don't contemplate film, because IT IS CHEAPER to shoot GOOD digital. The Dragon is the cheapest decent cinema camera to rent today, they're everywhere and they look great when paired with very basic inexpensive cinema primes like CP2's and Rokinon Xeen's.
Here is one thing that will break your brain though. With the increased use of 35mm on productions, short-ends for 35mm have dropped in price substantially. Kodak charges .34/ft for 16mm stock new, but 35mm short ends from Reel Good film here in Hollywood are .17/ft. Yes... that number is right, 35mm is half the price of 16mm. Mind you, with 3 perf 35mm cameras, a 400ft load is half the runtime of 16mm (6 minutes). However, it's half the price, so stock v time equates to the same number. The only "additional" cost is processing and transfer, which most houses will work a killer deal for.
In the end, the benefits of film are in it's esthetic and differentiating it from the modern world of digital cinematography which is bland in a lot of ways. Digital is still cheaper on every level then film, unless you rent the very highest end cameras and have multiple people on set dealing with the workflow. I'm a one man band and I'm honest, digital is a lot easier to deal with, but it doesn't have the look of film by any stretch. People stand up and notice something that's shot on film, they may not if it's just "another" digital production.
Posted 11 April 2017 - 01:02 PM
The thing I always find funny about youtube guys like these is they claim to be a filmmakers but the only thing they have uploaded is agreeable commentary content.
Posted 11 April 2017 - 02:11 PM
Just to clarify, this is not my video, I found it online, I agree with most of what's been said, though I am not so sure about the figures, especially here in the UK. I know that these days it's pretty easy to borrow an S16 camera and it can cheaper to buy a camera rather than rent, Super 16 lenses are cheaper to rent than those for cameras such as the Arri Alexa. The costs are really dependent on how much you shoot, naturally if you have more shot footage there will be more film to process and scan.
Edited by Pavan Deep, 11 April 2017 - 02:13 PM.
Posted 11 April 2017 - 03:43 PM
The 3-day/week rental thing is a good point.
Of course SR3's can be purchased for under $6k and then sold for the same price when the production is done, so theoretically you could have a free camera for the shoot (of course it would help to have a cousin that's an Arri tech too.)
Too many variables on prices but the vague general point that film isn't so way out of the price range is well taken.
Posted 11 April 2017 - 05:03 PM
Yea, I've been watching A LOT of youtubers recently and very few people have any actual hands-on experience with anything they discuss. Heck, I've seen reviews of products where the reviewers themselves, don't even partake in the activity the product is being used for!
I'm actually in the process of making a kickass youtube series about filmmaking on motion picture film. Just sent the first batch of film to the lab yesterday! Ohh and yes, it's all shot on S16 and 35mm.
Posted 12 April 2017 - 04:50 PM
What about the costs of digital cinema post workflow, which wasn't mentioned, vs telecine costs? Which was mentioned. I think the S16 had so much more depth, that alone is worth it. Great film!
Posted 13 April 2017 - 05:32 AM
very true. many people think that digital is free. storage cost alone deter many from shooting 4k. with any film format, you don't need as much digital back up. If it fails, rescan. Film is an asset.
Posted 18 April 2017 - 02:02 PM
This still amazes me. Not that many years ago, when the SR3 was still in production, 30K for a good one wasn't out of the question. Now they're almost free. ;-)