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Getting a cold, low contrast look on Kodak 500T 7219

kodak film 16mm low contrast blue look

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#1 Peter Hadfield

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Posted 22 January 2018 - 05:10 PM

Hello all!

 

I'm shooting a short on 16mm Kodak 500T Vision3 next month. I'm looking to get a cold look out of the film. Thinking blue hues in the shadows, while keeping low contrast in the image.

 

Hoping for something along the lines of the look of the film Godless. Specifically inspired by the MSs of men at 01:33 and 00:33.

 

I have interiors and exteriors, day and night. Planning on using natural light and LiteMat 4's for lighting, and Ultra Primes for glass. Planning on shooting regular 16mm to get the tall aspect ratio. 

 

I was thinking I would use an 81 filter to adjust the Tungsten stock for daylight scenes to keep some of the inherent blue from the tungsten stock. I was also toying with using an Antique Suede 1 filter for colour correction... but was wondering if anyone has any advice or would know how to get a look similar to Godless. Should I pull the film a stop? Any filters I could use I don't know about? 

 

Appreciate any comments!

thank you

Peter 

 

 


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#2 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 22 January 2018 - 09:19 PM

If you want a cool look, why would you use a warming filter like an Antique Suede?

 

Considering that many movies have shot tungsten stock in daylight with no 85 correction (like "Barry Lyndon", "Heat", "Greystoke"), I'm not sure it is really necessary to use a partial correction like an 81EF, though that's what "Saving Private Ryan" did.  I'd probably use the 81EF or some mild warming filter like that just to shoot the grey card outside for dailies, and then pull it for the scene, so that the colorist corrects half the blue out.  I'd also shoot a note on the back of the slate after the grey card that says "COLOR: COLD, BLUE TONE" or something like that.

 

If you've seen the look of a log scan of film negative before it gets the Rec.709 display gamma applied, you know what film negative can be pretty pastel and low-con before it is corrected, so one approach would just to go for a "loggy" look, though you'd have to supervise the dailies or shoot tests and create a LUT for dailies that would keep some of the log feeling.

 

Yes, you could overexpose and pull-process, which might also help reduce some of the graininess of 500T as well as soften the contrast.  On top of that, you could try filters that lower contrast like UltraCons or Smoque or LowCons.  Haze on interiors will also lower contrast.

 

Those shots you cited from "Godless" don't look that low-con to me, the contrast seems normal but the light is soft.


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#3 Peter Hadfield

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Posted 23 January 2018 - 01:31 PM

Hi David,

 

Thanks for responding!

 

I thought I'd use an Antique Suede on 500T because it would get the white balance back to 'normal', but not quite to the same extent as an 85 filter. Done a bit of research on Antique Suede, and it seems like it isn't as dense as an 85, or I was thinking of trying a 1/4 to keep some blue in the image.

 

I see what you're saying about the 81EF on the grey card. That sounds like a good move... Just colouring half the blue out of the picture. I'll be sitting in for the DI, so I could make sure the colourist keeps some of the blue tones in.

 

I have seen a log scan of film. Very low contrast. I figured I could get the right amount of contrast in the DI, but I figured if I'm shooting film I might as well get some of the effects in camera.

 

Looked up UltraCons. Very nice! I'll have to see if I can get a hold of one. Pulling a stop to get rid of grain 

 

Yeah, you're right about Godless. Looks like a lot of overcast skies and windows with diffusion on them...

 

I think I'll pull a stop and time out the blue in the DI. I'll post when it's done for anyone that's curious. 


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