Magazine article American Cinematographer

Letters

Magazine article American Cinematographer

Letters

Article excerpt

Super-16

We much appreciate your mentioning our new movie WILDROSE in the context of an article about shooting features in 16mm which appeared in the September issue. If we may, however, we'd like to correct a couple of errors.

Todd Crandall was mistakenly identified as director of photography, whereas he served as first assistant to Peter Stein, our O.P. Together they recommended and made it possible for us to use Arriflex's first Super 16mm camera available here in the States. It performed beautifully. For your readers' interest, we used the Aaton Super 16 camera as our second camera. With the exception of a few problems with the magazines, it performed very well. One sequence involved three cameras, and we used Peter and Todd's Arriflex SR2 regular 16mm in addition to the two Super 16mm cameras.

Finally, we would like to clarify that the iron mines of the Mesabi Range are all open pit rather than underground mines. If anything, the blowing paniculate matter presents more of a threat than might be the case underground. We are very pleased to report that, due to Todd's care, the film remained impervious.

In general, we are extremely pleased with our decision to shoot in Super 16mm. The reduced scale made our shoot a more personal one. The quality of our camera department and of our equipment produced images which promise to yield a spectacular blow-up to 35mm.

John Hanson & Sandra Schulberg

Eveleth, Minnesota

In addition to the Arriflex and Aaton Super-16 cameras Eclair has just introduced a convertible 16/Super-16 camera called the Panoram which converts by altering the viewfinder mask, the aperture gate and the optical axis with one simple adjustment. Something else worth noting also is that it is possible to modify a Rank Cintel to re-center a Super-16 frame for transfer to videotape so that it is cropped equally on both sides. This has been done in Scandanavia for some time with prototype equipment and Rank is currently developing a production model of the aperture gate and auxiliary lens required to achieve this with no loss in image quality.

3-D Systems

For both personal and professional reasons I was happy to see the 3-D article in the October issue and look forward to more, especially more technical information on the various systems available now. I would like, however, to question a point made by Michael Starks and offer some questions for further research.

Starks is in error when he says the anaglyph process cannot be used in color since this is the basis of the Video West process highlighted in your famous April, 1974, 3-D issue (and admittedly not heard of since). I have only the stills in that issue to go by, not having had a chance to see film tests shown at USC in 1972, so I don't know how the process compares with polaroid systems, but from a business standpoint, it is the most economically viable of the 3-D processes.

In my research on 3-D I have run across references to the fact that during the early Fifties boom experiments were conducted using the Vectorgraph system to yield single-strip prints. In this process the polarization is built into the images as they are superimposed upon each other on the print. This would eliminate many of the projection problems especially light loss and is, I feel, worthy of further investigation.

It would not, however, eliminate the major flaw I see in the current single lens systems, not addressed by Starks, but brought vividly home to me last spring after I saw single system prints of DIAL M FOR MURDER and PARASITE within a week of each other. The latter used one of the current single lens systems while for the former the original two-camera negatives had been duped onto a single internegative by one of the methods described by Starks and was infinitely sharper and brighter. I feel that many current complaints of eyestrain stem from the poor resolution resulting from using half or less of the 35mm frame for original photography, complicated by the projection problems. …

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