digital cinematography - the death or evolution of film
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DESCRIPTIONAn in depth research topic about digital motion pictures and their potential to usurp 35mm film.
Introduction With the consistent developments in the art and technological aspects of digital cinematography, one cannot help avoid the question of whether digital will be the death of film? Many people have hailed (read: mourned) digital as the death of film as a format and an art form. I will investigate several different aspects of the fine nuances of digital cinematography to analyse whether the hype regarding the downfall of film is entirely, partially or not justified. At present 35mm film is most definitely the dominant format in the industry and is the tool of choice for in excess of 99% of mainstream motion pictures produced presently (Rdlein). Digital motion pictures for the most part are shot in the high definition 1080p format, despite cameras offering 2k and 4k resolution (See Plate 1). Despite at the moment, film owning a huge majority of the moving image industrys market share, several mainstream digital projects have been commissioned with studio backing, however these are generally reserved for specialist productions that incorporate large amounts of post production manipulation of the original image captured. Opinion in Hollywood at present is split much like the use of film and digital as a format. The vast majority of Hollywood cinematographers and directors either disregard digital as a non-option as far as their projects go; others are vehemently against digitals inclusion in motion picture production; whilst other staunchly approve and lobby for digitals inclusion and acceptance in Hollywood. The death of film has been heralded many times in the past, for example with the arrival of sound recording onto film (Lunde, 21). Purists of film that pre-dated sound integration claimed that it devalued the art of filmic (visual) cinematography. I however take a cynical (read: presumptuous) approach that the disparagers of the
sound and film union were merely disjointed analogue sound recorders with a chip on each shoulder. I am not entirely convinced that the digital versus film conflict is not born of the same reasons as the sound debate; something I hope to have confirmed or disproved by the end of this research paper. The science involved in film cinematography is immense and complicated; however digital advances have made digital cinematography an easier science to grasp, thanks mainly to its in-camera correction functions. Could jilted film cinematographers have given birth to an antidigital movement? I will attempt to ascertain this during the paper. Regardless of the origins of the anti-digital fraternity even the most foolhardy film devotee would struggle to deny the advanced possibilities that digital cinematography could offer to filmmakers and the filmmaking industry in its entirety. Naturally as with most emerging technologies digital has its advantages and disadvantages, I will analyse, address and identify these and try to acknowledge ways in which they can either be overcome or corrected. In this research paper, I will compare and contrast both digital and film aspects of filmmaking to decide if the scaremongering about films final demise is justified or not. In order to do this, I will analyse economic factors, political considerations, practical factors, aesthetic factors as well as the way that the motion pictures are eventually distributed and received. I will attempt to conclude whether digital cinematography will indeed be the death, or the evolution of film.
Economic and Political Factors When considering the digital versus film battle, it is hard to neglect the fact that the chief driving force behind the Hollywood motion picture industry is money. The industry thrives on investments with the prime goal of making money. It is
arguably this factor more than any other that undercuts the romanticised notions of film; that its solid; you can hold it in your hand; that its an art etc. as it is run principally as a business. Needless to say, that as the driving force in Hollywood, economic factors could have severe implications for the entire debate on film and digitals place in the motion picture industry. In this section, I will analyse how the economic and political factors of the motion picture industry affect the digital and film question with particular attention to whom or what is blocking the transition from film to digital. I will also look at the difference in costs between film production and digital productions, in an attempt to ascertain whether there are financial reasons behind Hollywoods aversion to digital media. When the cost of filmmaking is as much as a pencil and a piece of paper, then well find great artists said Jean Renoir (qtd. in Martini, xiii), and Richard Martini believes that that time is now (Martini, xiii). Martini believes that by freeing independent filmmakers from the restraints that are placed on them by the financial implications that come hand in hand with motion picture production, more artistically sound filmmakers will be found. Martini argues that it is the content that is more important than the delivery format on which it is placed (Martini, ix). Perhaps Martini is right, if not a little simplistic in his theory. Martini believes that if something is thrown at a wall enough times then eventually something will stick; The Blair Witch Project (1999) could be perceived as one such sticky item. A forty thousand dollar ($40,000) investment in The Blair Witch Project, a frightfully small budget, translated into a one hundred and forty million dollar ($140m) return in sales (Willis, 29). The concept and plot behind The Blair Witch Project were structurally reliable allowing its Hi-8 and 16mm film formats to be perceived as one of the films quirks and charms, adding to its authenticity. One can surmise that Martini is right in
more ways than one; is it the time to make motion pictures with a small budget and is it possible for these to compete in Hollywood? The reason I am highlighting The Blair Witch Project is to show that so called lesser formats can work on the big screen too. One of the primary arguments coming from film loyalists is that the picture quality of the digital image simply is not as good as that produced by 35mm film (an issue I will discuss in the Aesthetic Values section of this paper). One can only assume that if The Blair Witch Project had the funding of a large Hollywood studio, the film would have been shot on 35mm and degraded in post-production to gain its aesthetic effect. Why are several large studios so averse to this new digital technology? David Fincher, director of the motion picture Zodiac (2007), tells us how Sony Pictures have constantly advised him not to use High Definition digital images for his motion pictures as they are too unreliable (Goldman, 9). Fincher, who shot this latest production using entirely digital data; no tape or film, notes the irony that Sony Pictures mother company actually produce the cameras and formats that he was dissuaded from using. So can we assume from Finchers comments that perhaps the studios that fund these productions are deliberately dragging their feet to slow down the digital revolution that threatens to usurp film? Fincher, who made Zodiac with the Warner Brothers Studio said that one of the main constraints of working with digital data was the opposition he faced from the studio and from what is seen as the industry culture (Goldman, 10). This is a point reiterated by Richard Martini, who states that by using 35mm or studio provided money, it becomes very difficult to tell personal stories (Martini, x). So why are these studios applying the brakes to the digital format; one may be forgiven for returning to the source of most controversy in the motion picture industry, money.
An optimists argument would be that big budget productions are averse to new technologies due to the risk that an investor would see in an unproven medium (Kirsner, Studios Shift, 7). An argument that implies that once the digital medium is proven as a big money maker in the box office, then it will become a viable investment for motion picture investors. The contentious issue regarding the economic benefits of shooting digitally is one that Newton Thomas Sigel, Director of Photography for Superman Returns (2006) argues is a fruitless debate, when one is talking of studio-funded work (Kirsner, The Big Pixel, 26). Sigel; who chose to shoot Superman Returns in digital for its aesthetic qualities states that on a motion picture with a two hundred million dollar budget ($200m) the saving is not significant in a budget of such scale. However, the average saving of seven hundred and fifty thousand (750,000) feet of 35mm film stock on a production is undoubtedly going to make a saving on a smaller independent production (Kirsner, The Big Pixel, 26). Figures are difficult to confirm with such matters, as the amount of film stock used for a production has far too many variables, however Kirsner believes the figure for an independent production to be in the region of a 25% saving from the camera departments budget (Kirsner, The Big Pixel, 26). Presumably Kirsner with this reference is referring to high end high definition images that are in their essence similar to film. From an economic standpoint, digital is seemingly an effective way of saving money from a budget; however the amount of a saving from a high budget production is so minimal that a studio would be prepared to pay a little more for the failsafe that is 35mm celluloid film. However if digital were to prove itself as a viable format for mass distribution; and the subsequent returns it could entail for its investors, then perhaps we will see more studios willingly investing in digital processes. An issue
that could be holding the entire process back on a financial and political level could be found with motion picture institutions that are less stable than the film studios; for example the countless film schools and post-production facilities. These institutions which are perhaps less lucrative than the actual film producers could be holding back their transferral to digital due to the large overheads of purchasing digital equipment; rather than continuing to use the film equipment which they currently own. More than the financial implications of this is the issue of the standardisation of the digital workflow. The digital workflow at the moment varies from person to person, company to company, etc. to etc. It would be impossible for these institutions to accurately speculate which digital image format will become an industry standard. I will discuss this issue of standardisation of workflow in the next chapter (Practical Issues) of this paper. Some may argue that digital production has already proven its financial feasibility with productions such as George Lucas Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones (2002), Robert Rodriguezs Once Upon a Time in Mexico (2003) and Michael Manns Collateral (2004) all using digital as their main format. Many critics have greeted these motion pictures however as quaint little experiments so that directors and Directors of Photography can play with the latest kit that is available (Kirsner, The Big Pixel, 26). Productions such as Superman Returns, Click and Miami Vice; all produced in 2006 has made digital cinematography more difficult to brush off (Kirsner, The Big Pixel, 26). All of the 2006 digital productions have succeeded in Hollywood without ever making groundbreaking profit at the box office; proving that digital is a viable format provided (as Martini has said) that the content is right (Martini, ix).
Despite the superficial success of these digital productions, pessimists still bemoan the demise of film, however many digital video optimists see this stage as the advent of new, democratized [sic] filmmaking (Willis, 1). The meaning of this democratisation is that film directors have total creative control over their work. Shane Meadows, the cult director of the 2004 success, Dead Mans Shoes, tells us the reason he chooses to direct independently is so that he has the freedom and ability to change his mind on set, a luxury that would not be afforded to him if he produced motion pictures under a studios banner. This is due to the constraints that investors would have on this unconventional approach (Meadows). Francis Ford Coppola, director of The Godfather Trilogy (1972-1990) has often dreamt of a democratised form of filmmaking that allows him a release from the tyranny of the Hollywood film industry (Willis, 20 & 1). Coppola however, unlike Meadows has discovered digital as a means that allows him to escape from such tyranny with his latest motion picture Youth Without Youth (2007) shot using entirely digital methods. Some Hollywood directors however are passionate advocates of film, openly stating that they will never use digital methods. These directors include Steven Spielberg and Quentin Tarantino to name but two. It is interesting however to compare Spielberg and Tarantino with two purveyors of the digital argument in George Lucas and Robert Rodriquez. Lucas and Spielberg are two directors who influenced a generation with their filmmaking; Lucas with the original Star Wars Trilogy (Episodes 4-6) and Spielberg with classics such as Jurassic Park (1993), ET (1982) etc. yet both directors have taken bipolar stances on the digital versus film debate. Lucas is alleged to have said that he sees no reason why he would ever shoot on film ever again, whereas Spielberg has supposedly said the opposite. Tarantino and Rodriquez, again directors who have influenced a different generation through
their motion pictures, have taken similarly bipolar opinions to one another as Spielberg and Lucas. Taking the example of Grindhouse (2007) a two-part motion picture made collaboratively between Rodriguez and Tarantino. Tarantinos half of the motion picture was shot using film and Rodriguezs half using digital methods. This collaboration shows no bad blood, simply a preference for one format over the other (Riley). This serves to prove that the opinions directors have on this debate have their roots planted a lot deeper than in simple generational differences as one could be forgiven for arguing. The economic factors in relation to digital cinematography appeal almost entirely to smaller budget independent productions due to the (approximate) 25% saving that such a production could make on their camera budget. However, as Newton Thomas Sigel has said, such a small saving is unlikely to seduce any production that has a large studio provided budget to use digital methods for its production. Could the primary reason for the lack of investment into digital be big budget motion pictures aversion to new technologies due to their unproven nature? Despite this possible aversion, several directors are championing the cause of digital production and due to their own reputation studios are beginning to experiment with providing a sizeable budget for these productions. Evidence of this faith from studios can be seen through the commissioning of Mel Gibsons Apocalypto, Irwin Winklers Home of the Brave (2006) and Francis Ford Coppolas Youth Without Youth. All of these directors are drawn to digital because of its escalated democratisation in comparison to studio funded 35mm projects. This democratisation allows these film producers to make the motion picture that they wish to make as full resolution playback is available on location. The hindrance, on a financial level at least is perhaps coming from post production houses who are biding their time before
committing to a digital workflow that may not become the industry standard1. Perhaps once this standardisation takes place, studios and industry culture will be more enthusiastic to contribute and embark on digital filmmaking as Hollywoods standard format. The plausibility of up and coming directors producing work that catches the eye of Hollywood film studios, could help to encourage investment in digital productions. The theory being that studios employ or commission a new and exciting director and they take their digital way of working with them. This would perhaps be a viable way for investment in digital productions from a large studio. Rodriquez has confirmed that this is the case; stating that studios have offered him cash to make motion pictures his way under their banner (Riley).
Practical Issues With Warner Brothers now archiving the vast majority of their material as a 4k digital negative in addition to on 35mm film, is digital now a practical medium to be used for moving picture production? (Giardina, 4ks Number)? The practicalities of shooting a production in a digital format arouses debate between diehard film fanatics and pro-digital new-agers. Film fanatics will tell you that the cumbersome digital cameras arent practical for shoots outside of a studio situation, whereas a pro-digital filmmaker would tell you that its impractical to have to change a reel of film at the drop of a hat. Undoubtedly, digitals strong point is its ability for longer shot lengths which give a greater breadth to the possibilities of the moving image. Could this reason be why an ever increasing number of motion pictures incorporate both digital and filmic content in their final cuts? On the same note however, Michael Mann is rumoured to have stashed large recording devices for hisA post production house or facility is the location where the editing of the film occurs, after the shooting and production process.1
digital cameras as ballast for the boats used during the shooting of Miami Vice; this is blatantly not a practical option for digital filmmaking and can only serve to alarm and dissuade other filmmakers from venturing into the world of digital cinematography. I dont think film or tapes are about to be immediately replaced, but there are now viable alternatives says Steve Shaw of Digital Praxis; a bold statement from a man who makes his livelihood from the digital aspect of filmmaking (Pennington, 27). Shaw is speaking of the 4k digital image; digital images are rated based on vertical lines, the 4k image is adjudged to have four thousand (4000) of these vertical lines. Unfortunately due to the massive resolution and subsequent large bit rate of this large image there have been several issues practically with capturing and storing such an image; a tapeless, data based format being the only real possibility. The original 4k camera, the Dalsa Origin was plagued for much of its early life due to this inability to handle or store the footage it was creating. Now however technology has advanced considerably to capture full quality, uncompressed 4k moving images, however many filmmakers see this as problematic as the camera must be connected to a redundant array of inexpensive/independent drives/disks (RAID) hard drive or a similar device, these devices can be large and cumbersome, especially once connected to a camera. Scott Kirsner argues that the digital cameras themselves can be more unwieldy than equivalent 35mm film cameras, a point vehemently denied by many, who see them as being a more diverse option than an equivalent 35mm film camera (Kirsner, The Big Pixel, 26). As far as the Dalsa Origin and the Viper FilmStream by Grass Valley (not a 4k camera, but often used for filmmaking) are concerned, in terms of dimensions and weight they are directly comparable to 35mm cameras from the likes of ARRI and Panavision. Seemingly however, the digital cameras accessibility is not an issue as both the Origin and the FilmStream have been used for
professional studio supported motion picture productions. As I have already mentioned, the Grass Valley Viper FilmStream camera for example was used for the production of Zodiac directed by David Fincher. Zodiac is Hollywoods first ever feature length motion picture to be shot entirely digitally onto hard disk; with the use of neither tape nor film; using an entirely customised system that was modified as the shoot progressed and needs changed. This example is in keeping with Brian Winstons opinions that digital video products tend to evolve organically as needs must rather than developing constantly and continuously (qtd. in Willis, 22). This evolution is dangerous according to Kirsner who (as I have already mentioned) feels that a lack of an industry standardised workflow for digital motion pictures confuses, disorientates and most importantly dissuades film producers to make digital motion pictures. This is a view shared by Renos Louka, the Managing Director of ARRI in the UK. Louka claims that as a result of the countless different workflows that are available to film producers, it can become confusing for film producers who can feel like an artist with a paintbrush that he [the director] is not familiar with (Louka). Despite cries that 4k cameras are too cumbersome, the French director JeanLuc Goddard stated in 1976 that he would like a 35mm film camera that he could fit and keep in his cars glove compartment, unsurprisingly this never happened; despite Goddards best efforts (Willis, 19). However the announcement of the Red One 4k camera with impressive approximate dimensions of two hundred and fifty millimetres long, one hundred millimetres wide, and one hundred and forty millimetres high (250x100x140mm)2 (English). Unfortunately the average size of the worlds glove compartments is not on record and would be a mammoth research project to conclude, however I would hazard a guess that the Red One would fit in an average (to large)These are the dimensions for the RED One Camera without the lens attached. Supplied confidentially with confidence by Stuart English; REDs Workflow Wizard. Details are for academic purposes only and must not be used in any kind of public forum, publication or press release.2
glove compartment. Carolyn Giardina describes the Red One as a camera that could democratize [sic] the film industry, and with a highly practical price tag of less than twenty thousand pounds (20,000) for the body and the lens the Red One can realistically compete with 35mm film cameras quality for a fraction of the price. Red commissioned Peter Jackson to make a short motion picture Crossing the Line (2007) to help with the launch of the camera. The motion picture was shot at full uncompressed 4k but was edited in a low resolution in Apples Final Cut Pro before once again being mastered in full 4k using Quantels iQ system (Giardina, Oakley Unveils Red). The motion picture gained critical acclaim from professional and amateur filmmakers alike. As I have already mentioned in a previous chapter, digital cinematography is seen as the democratic way of filmmaking allowing total creative control over the images produced. Something that is embraced by several top directors; namely Robert Rodriguez and George Lucas to name but two. The amount of roles that these directors can perform as a result of digital production is phenomenal, and it is this added democratisation that is so appealing to directors. Some question whether without the luxuries afforded to them by the digital medium, whether independent filmmakers would continue to flourish and make such noteworthy independent productions. My initial reaction would be to disregard this question as overintellectualised scaremongering. My reason for this is that so long as there is a passion for filmmaking it will continue to exist and develop regardless of how democratic a process it is. I cite the Martini reference from an earlier chapter to prove my views. Martini stated that the content is more important than the quality of the format on which it is delivered (Martini, ix). Id anticipate a return to lower quality material with great content were digital to lose its democratic values. This is a
feasible development, especially in the current user generated content climate of mobile camera phones etc. One could argue that the announcement by ARRI in 2006 of their ARRIFLEX D-20 digital camera was a sign of how seriously the bastions of film are beginning to take this digital invasion. When primed on the threat that digital provides film in the moving image stakes, Renos Louka stated that he believed that it was possible for digital to replace film in much the same way as it has done with stills imagery. Despite this, Louka claimed that this is a generation away but that the choice was ultimately up to the film producers. During several email interviews with Louka, it became obvious to me that he was keeping his cards very much close to his chest, ensuring that he did not show favouritism towards either format, stating that ARRI do not dictate which format is used by the industry, they simply have the equipment to be able to offer film creators the best tools for the job; sometimes this is 35mm film, sometimes this is 16mm film and other times this is digital. Louka did however agree that developments in the digital field were astronomical and believed that we are close to finding the ultimate format for the job of digital feature motion pictures. An issue that ARRIs Managing Director (UK), Renos Louka brought to my attention was the potential for film and video to live harmoniously together rather than becoming mutually exclusive. Short of being a shrewd way of Louka advertising the fantastic range of products that ARRI have for such a job, the notion did interest me. Following some research, I discovered that Francis Ford Coppola successfully used the digital image and 35mm film image in 1982. Coppola mounted a small video camera to the top of the film camera to use as a preview monitor; he then edited the low resolution video before sending the 35mm reels off for splicing, using the edited video sequence as a reference for the master edit. In addition to this practical
use of video/digital in 35mm film production, several directors choose to use digital for its aesthetic purposes. For example, in 28 Days Later (2002) a severely degraded piece of footage was used to signify a flash back and was interwoven with the rest of the motion picture. I will discuss the artistic rationale behind employing this tactic of using different formats for different effects in the Aesthetic Values section of this paper. Before proceeding any further, I believe I need to tackle the issue of postproduction in relation to both the digital and film processes. This is due to the high level of digital work that is incorporated into film post production in modern times. Henning Rdlein, head of digital film at ARRI insists that digital and film will always work hand in hand with each other as film for the most part is edited digitally. The vague concept behind editing the film digitally is very similar to that championed by Coppola in 1982, whereby a low resolution image is edited and is used as a reference for the editing of the 35mm film stock. The subtle difference now is that the original film stock is digitalised before being edited and then printed back to film. Digitalisation is a process whereby film stock is processed through a computer and is ingested into the computer creating a data file of the original content for editing. Some realists may see this as illogical; observing that if the footage is originally captured on a digital camera, then ingestion to a computer can be completed without the need for expensive digitalisation of the original film stock. However, as I mentioned in an earlier section of this paper, a studio funded project would be more prepared to pay the extra money for a reliable proven work flow. Rdlein believes that as the post production process is almost entirely digital at present, then the next logical step would be for projection and distribution to be a digital process also, however he notes that a bleak 5% of cinema screens worldwide use digital projectors,
and admits that this figure is also an optimistic one. If Rdlein is correct that distribution will become digital, then perhaps following the digital take over of post production and distribution, then surely the next logical step would be for the production itself to become a digital process? Some argue that the extensive digitalisation of film exposes many of the underlying processes and roles of the industry. Although film has developed through many ratios and formats, perhaps digitalisation is one step too far. Due to the ease with which the digital image can be manipulated for computer generated imagery (CGI) it is no wonder that the vast majority of motion picture titles that I have mentioned are ones that rely heavily on this generation of an artificially modified world. For example, Superman Returns used digital techniques successfully to create the effect of flying, as well as a bullet being shot into Supermans eye as we watch it crease and fall in super slow motion. Perhaps the most explicit example of this doctoring of images can be seen in Robert Rodriguez and Frank Millers Sin City (2005) where the entire production took place in a fake town with a highly stylised feel to it. The production took Frank Millers comic books as a storyboard for the production and through use of post production keying etc. effectively reproduced moving images of Frank Millers still images. One gets the feeling however that perhaps digital has more to offer the film industry than simply occupying this niche market of image manipulation, especially as resolutions begin to match equivalent resolutions of 35mm film; do the arguments and reasons for not using film subside? Does the development from 35mm film to digital lie in the eradication of the RAID drives that accompany the cameras? The Red One camera has the capability to record to flash memory3, a novel idea that may be the way forward for the capturing
The RED One can also stream directly to RAID style devices.
of such high resolution footage without taking up large amounts of physical space. However as discovered through Panasonics P2 system, compact media can become very expensive for a little amount of storage space. Zodiac, shot entirely on digital data became the first Hollywood production to accomplish such a feat; I would argue however that as the vast majority of the motion picture is studio based, this tapeless process was simple enough, however until data storage takes up less physical space, I cannot see digital cinematography moving practically out of the studio. The ability of digital cameras to craft the image in-camera is a bonus over that of film. Digital cameras have colour control, contrast control etc. built in, whereas film relies more heavily on post production for these functions (Pennington, 27). Despite the removal of this process from post, the sheer scale of the 4k image itself and the vast amount of storage space it requires prolongs the post-production process significantly longer than previous, smaller resolution images have taken. However, the thought of digital raw footage in place of 35mm film must whet the appetite of most post-producers worldwide, all of whom await the day where major motion pictures are produced digitally (Pennington, 27). In addition to the savings that are possible from the camera budget of a production, the digital process is a lot quicker. The fact that the whole process could occur at approximately twice the speed of film production; due to longer shooting time, shorter post process, less staff needed could work on another shoot etc. This could potentially free up high profile directors to work on more projects a year, something that would mean more income for the motion picture investors. Until studios appreciate the value of quicker filmmaking, the length of producing a motion picture by using 35mm film will simply be accepted.
Aesthetic Values As I have dedicated the vast majority of the previous section to the practicalities of shooting in digital, I will now deal with how the digital image is aesthetically received by directors and cinematographers and whether it realistically offers a challenge on an aesthetic level to the image produced by 35mm film. As I have already mentioned, several influential directors have spoken out against the perceived quality of the digital image, or rather have defended the aesthetic of film. I will analyse productions where the digital image has attempted to recreate that aesthetic of film. I aim to ascertain whether it is possible for the digital image to be embraced as it is; a clean, modern looking image (Kirsner, The Big Pixel, 26) or will it continue to emulate the look founded by film. Momentarily returning to the digital 4k image; to give a scope of the quality of this digital image, the 2k image is generally considered to be the same quality as the 35mm film image (Pennington, 27). Naturally, one would consider that the 4k image is noticeably larger and better than that of the 2k image (see Plate 1); however Giardina informs us that the average film goer would struggle to tell the difference between the images (Giardina, 4ks Number). I will analyse this theory in greater depth in the next chapter of this paper on Reception Theory and Distribution. Regardless of the technicalities of the digital image, its aesthetic properties either appeal to directors or dissuade them. Newton Thomas Sigel, Director of Photography for Superman Returns claims that his choice to shoot in digital was not economic, but was a judgement call based on the aesthetic composition of the image as well as the flexibility that was afforded to them by choosing to shoot in digital (Kirsner, The Big Pixel, 26). The flexibility that Sigel speaks of is the ability to shoot for longer amounts of time without having to change a roll of film. Regardless
of the practicalities, Sigel insists that the image provided by Grass Valleys Viper FilmStream gives a cleaner  modern, painterly look that better suited the aesthetic requirements of Superman Returns than that of the grainy 35mm filmic image (Kirsner, The Big Pixel, 26). It is nice to see a high profile cinematographer such as Sigel embracing the image created by these cameras rather than manipulating the image to the nth degree to create a filmic look. In my opinion, this striving for that film look has been a problem that has affected the development of digital as a format in recent times, as cinematographers are content to take the clean image of digital and degrade it to reproduce filmic aesthetic qualities. Recent examples of this can be seen in Doctor Who; the entire series was shot digitally and then undertook extensive post production processes to recreate that film look. One must conclude from this that the reason the production of Doctor Who was shot digitally was for practical reasons rather than for aesthetic ones. With a television production on the scale of Doctor Who turn around time is of the essence. However when one considers the amount of CGI work that takes place in an average episode of Doctor Who, the extra process of digitalisation for visual effects (VFX) purposes that would be required if the production was shot in film, could compromise the tight deadlines that a television production is working to, as the post production process would be more time consuming. The budget for Doctor Who is considerably smaller than that of an average Hollywood movie and thus economics may take precedence over aesthetics. On the other side of the spectrum, we can cite the case of Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks Band of Brothers (2001) a made for TV ten part series of hour long episodes, shot entirely on film and was processed (digitally) to degrade and colour correct every frame of film to create that look that has become synonymous with
moving images of the Second World War era. Despite the obvious bonus of a large budget, the judgement call was made by Spielberg to shoot on film as the grainy effect notorious to film added to the dated look and aesthetic that they wanted to achieve in the production. Recounting Sigels comments that digital creates a modern look that perhaps is better suited to productions like the futuristic Doctor Who over period based pieces like Band of Brothers. This being said, the BBCs fantastic television series of Bleak House, a nineteenth century drama that was shoot entirely in digital successfully establishes the illusion of a period drama through its clever cinematography etc. perhaps proving that digital is more than capable of fulfilling productions set in past, present and futuristic contexts. Zodiac is very much showing digital cinematography in its most naturalistic light and makes no apologies for the fact that it is a digitally produced motion picture. More large scale productions need to be able to display digital in this natural light without a process of filmicisation [sic]. Aesthetically however, it seems that digital lends itself best to a futuristic context, especially with its affinity with visual effects. Holly Willis tells us that the main objective of CGI is to create a world that doesnt exist or a world that cannot be [re]created (Willis, 11). As Adrian Pennington informs us, the digital 4k image allows higher fidelity with visual effects than is possible with film (or lower resolution digital images); that could imply we may see an uprising in the amount of Hollywood motion pictures that are shot digitally due to the opportunities that are afforded to them in the post production and image manipulation stakes, rather than because of the cameras original aesthetics. The replication of the film image by digital has now been adopted by the actual production of these 4k cameras. Rather than being natural progressions of the
three charged-coupled device (3CCD) cameras that high end consumers use, the cameras are purpose built to replicate the ways in which 35mm film cameras are built. For example, the publicity for the Dalsa Origin camera makes sure that at every turn it references itself back to 35mm film devices; stating that its sensor provides all the exposure latitude of the best film stocks; that it uses genuine 35mm cinematography lenses; it even has an optical reflex viewfinder, a bizarre concept as it negates one of digitals beneficial specifications; the ability to easily relay a digital image. The objective of Dalsas marketing team is obvious, to attempt to annul the cries that digitals image quality and general aesthetic is not to the same standard of film. And indeed Dalsa are right, the digital image is now (at least on a technical level) to the same kind of resolution and colours that film can produce, but I am very wary of digital continuing to exist and develop on films terms. I would argue that by all means camera manufacturers should emulate the success that the 35mm cameras have experienced, but should do so without feeling the need to replicate the film image. As Newton Thomas Sigel has said; the digital image is a different image (Kirsner, The Big Pixel, 26). The film aesthetic is one that independent filmmakers have tried to replicate since digital cinematography became the primary tool of their trade4, in pre 16 x 9 (widescreen) digital days, masks were applied in post to achieve that film look that they craved so bad. Many cameras have included the film grain feature in an attempt to degrade the clean digital image significantly to appear as film. With 4k digital cameras emulating 35mm film cameras in several ways, from a technical stand point digital cinematography is becoming a convincing competitor for 35mm film, a medium whose quality has been unrivalled for decades. It is perplexing that despiteThis is not claiming that independent filmmakers no longer use 8mm, 16mm, 35mm or any other format of film. However more and more independent films are being produced digitally now than ever before.4
this technology being available (albeit at a primitive stage) that no full length feature has been produced in full 4k; one speculates this is mainly due to problems with its distribution. Despite this, digital cinematography now has an opportunity to create an aesthetic of its own rather than simply replicating the aesthetic of film. In order for digital cinematography to continue to develop it must lose its obsession with attempting to replicate that filmic look. The reality is, this is the direction that image making is going according in Sigel and Im initially inclined to agree. Once the digital image becomes accepted by some key filmmakers then the decision to shoot on digital will become more acceptable; much in the same way as with digital stills technology. Within the still imagery sector, it was the consumer market who originally embraced the digital technology as their old 35mm film roll cameras were cheap to replace and the ease of sharing pictures was of paramount importance. The professional side of the still images sector were slower to embrace the digital camera until its technology had developed substantially. Eventually professionals were won over by the ease of digital stills and now digital virtually owns the market. Will the sentiments of the digital stills revolution be echoed by those of the moving image market? I would say that it is more than likely. At present the consumer section of moving image technology is completely dominated by digital formats such as miniDV and miniDVD with film a forgotten and distant memory. We are currently in the limbo that faced stills photography, when the entirety of the consumer sector was fully digital, whilst the professional division dragged its feet. Perhaps we will see a direct reaffirmation of the events that happened with the transitions of digital stills images in the actions of digital cinematography.
Reception Theory and Distribution
Ultimately, it is the reception of the motion pictures that is the most important part of the filmmaking process. If a motion picture is successfully received by the film going public then the economical side of things will naturally become a triumph also. As I have already mentioned, most motion pictures are distributed in film for projection in cinemas worldwide with a tiny percentage of cinemas having the capabilities to project digitally. However with breakthroughs in telecommunications (the internet) and satellite technology, perhaps worldwide distribution could happen at the touch of a button, rather than countless courier and distribution contracts worldwide. In this section I will analyse the plausibility of such a scheme of distribution. I will also scrutinise the changing ways that motion pictures are received. I intend to do this mainly by looking at mobile technologies as platforms for viewing video projects; I will investigate the plausibility of this becoming the next way that we all watch motion pictures. As I have already mentioned, there have been arguments whether the technical differences that exist between 4k digital and 2k digital are visible to an average film goers eye. I would argue that side by side the difference would be clearly noticeable (see Plate 1), although if one was to look at the images separately, Id argue they would be very similar and almost discernable to an average viewer. So why is there an emphasis on the 4k image when the 2k image already exists? An image that is a lot more accessible and useable than its bigger brother. Presumably the rationale behind the longing for 4k is simply to future proof the content, or perhaps to prove once and for all that digital is comparable to 35mm film in the quality stakes. However, if the difference to an audience member between 2k and 4k is minimal, then what is the underlying principle behind the creation of the 4k format; surely the logical step would be to create a format with a noticeably larger resolution from that
of the 2k digital image. Perhaps this argument is less important as the vast majority of motion pictures are distributed on a film reel, meaning that both the 2k and 4k images have to be printed to film for distribution. With a meagre 5% of cinemas choosing to project digitally (Rdlein), there is little call for the motion pictures to be distributed via digital methods, even though one can speculate that this would be cheaper in the long run as motion pictures could be distributed via fibre optic links or by satellites. Society is also growing more attached to an on-demand style service of watching videos on the move rather than in front of a big screen, thus negating the need for 4k video. Despite this, with the announcement of 4k (QuadHD) television sets, the lines between professional cinemas and home cinemas have been blurred, as one could have a full uncompressed 4k image in ones lounge. This could however act as a deterrent for those with a vested interest in theatrical distribution, as a lack of distribution to cinemas could result in a loss of custom and revenue. I will discuss this change in reception theory in greater depth later in this chapter. David Fincher notes how disappointing it is that motion pictures must be printed to film for distribution, questioning the integrity of film as a method for archival purposes. Henning Rdlein at ARRI claims that film is integral to an archival process as its lifespan is estimated to be in the region of five hundred years; Fincher defies this referring to Lawrence of Arabia (1962) as the case that proves his rule; challenging someone to find him a decent copy of the motion picture now, less than 50 years later. It is difficult to argue with Fincher on this subject as the amount of digitally re-mastered DVD releases at the moment could imply that secretly studios are concerned about the degradation of their archival reels. Warner Brothers have begun archiving to 4k as well as to film as a way of attempting to counter this degradation. As Fincher says, the beauty of digital distribution is the ease of
multiplication as opposed to the copying process that film must perform. As well as anything else, this copying process loses some quality from the original print, hence why Fincher says one would struggle to find a print of Lawrence of Arabia that was in good condition. I must argue however that I question whether a regular film goer could notice the subtle nuances and differences between digital and filmic projection; some people may claim this debate to be redundant as a result. However it is further evidence to show that aesthetically digital and film are becoming directly comparable. Carolyn Giardina believes that this digital distribution via satellites etc. could pave the way for further developments in the way we watch motion pictures. Giardina believes that satellite links into cinemas could allow 3D motion pictures to become a reality in full digital resolution as the satellites would be able to allow several high quality inputs to be projected/displayed simultaneously. Although theoretically Giardina is right, one might argue that digital needs to be careful not to run before it can walk and must concentrate on standardising a digital delivery format that is reliable, practical and economically viable before it even begins to consider the worldwide induction of 3D cinema. Shawn Carnahan believes that the digitalisation of motion picture production and more specifically the digitalisation of distribution could be a unique chance to standardise formats worldwide. Carnahan states that video tape formats were always/are a nightmare and an editor could use miniDV, DV cam, DigiBeta etc. types of video tape for a single programme for television. Carnahan believes that a transition to digital data could be the chance to standardise digital data. Carnahan however remains pessimistic citing the possibility that an evenings output on an average television station could range from PAL 16x9 to SECAM 4x3 and now even to mobile phone content. Through use of Discrete Cosine Transformation (DCT) data
can be reduced with little or no negative affect to the quality of the video (within reason). DCT may become a bigger player in motion picture distribution as reception methods change to a more mobile approach as is the growing trend with iPods and mobile phone devices. Shawn Carnahan speaks of the potential need to repurpose footage to be suitable for displaying on these devices. For example, downsizing a file with 4k resolution onto a display that is 176x144 pixels is going to be problematic especially when visual effects are brought into the equation (Carnahan, 10). Should watching motion pictures in a mobile way become popular, we may see a change in the way that the cinematography of the original productions is used. For example, I would surmise that productions would feature more close ups etc. to display better on a smaller screen. This being said, it would be possible to change the image during post-production instead using pan and scan technology. For instance and image could be cropped from a medium shot to a close up in post as the downsizing will mean that there are plenty of pixels to go around. Despite this, the high resolution afforded to cinematographers means that full resolution images are being filled with more and more information, and one would be inclined to say that when the delivery platform begins to compromise the motion pictures production, then technology is overriding the aesthetic of the motion picture. The fact remains that motion pictures shot in high resolution are intended to be viewed in high resolution. I do believe however that feature motion pictures do maintain a degree of separation from the mobile revolution and may manage to stay in the cinema; however as home entertainment systems become larger perhaps cinema productions will become more popular in the home. In my opinion this is an invitation for digital cinematography to come to the fore as a format. With the speeds of internet connections growing ever faster and with the possible introduction of fibre optic
broadband to houses in the foreseeable future, it is entirely possible for a set top box to have an internet connection and stream movies in full 2 or 4k resolution to ones home cinema system. As I have already mentioned Star Wars Episode II, Once Upon a Time in Mexico and Collateral have all been considered successful experiments without ever really pushing the envelope of digital cinematography. Click, Superman Returns and Miami Vice have made digital cinematography more prominent but again without ever really excelling creatively or financially. I predict that Zodiac however may silence a few of digital cinematographys critics due to the naturalism it successfully portrays. Zodiacs lack of a science fiction plot and its setting being a real place it surpasses the manipulation that many digital projects embrace. As I have already mentioned, the vast majority of digital projects receive so much work in post production from visual effects departments that the original content is academic; Zodiac however surpasses this, showing us a clear attempt to depict reality as viewed by the human eye. Although Zodiac may never become a rousing success with its box office takings, it will prove to filmmakers that making motion pictures naturalistically in digital can be a successful process. Due to the ever expanding capabilities of the internet, motion pictures will be able to be distributed worldwide virtually rather than physically. The plus side of renting bits over selling the atom is that ultimately motion pictures become more accessible; and also cheaper for the studios to distribute. I say this with relative confidence as there is no coincidence why large scale studios and distributors own several telecommunications and internet service providing companies. The issue of accessibility could be invaluable in a world where on demand and mobile services are highly sought after, as clients could download content directly onto their portable
devices. In the same breath, this means of distribution could also result in home cinema systems having the capabilities of downloading uncompressed high quality motion pictures directly to their screens. As well as being a practical means of distribution, Im sure it could turn out as a lucrative one for the respective distribution studios, especially when once considers that most motion pictures are distributed online illegally by use of torrent programmes and the like. One can only hazard a guess that if these movies were distributed and controlled by Digital Rights Management (DRM) then the problem of illegal file sharing would diminish. This illegality is perhaps is where Hollywoods supposed deep rooted loathing of data distribution is born. The ability to copy and transfer digital data affords productive opportunities, but also increases the ease with which these bits can be illegally copied. The problem facing digital technology on this distributional front is that only a small amount of cinemas have digital projection capabilities, severely hindering the possibilities that digital affords distribution. However, as Henning Rdlein has said, changes tend to be generational, we can construe from this that perhaps in a decade or so these celluloid projectors will be phased out and replaced by their digital counterparts; then digital distribution will become a pragmatic prospect for major motion picture studios.
Conclusion I think one would find that even the most stalwart film aficionado would concede that films replacement by digital is perhaps inevitable and is perhaps more of a case of when rather than if. Having analysed several aspects of the debate regarding digital and celluloid film, I believe that many conclusions can be drawn from these various areas. In this section, I will try to condense these deductions and
construe what significant events need to happen in order for this transition to become complete. Returning to the economical issue, the fact remains that Hollywood is a multibillion dollar industry and is run as such with cunning investments and carefully calculated business risks. Many may argue that Hollywood is still an artists haven and superficially I would agree, however the finance for these artists vision is heavily regulated by businessmen who carefully track their investments and subsequently have (perhaps an unhealthy) control over the artistic integrity of the production. Regardless of compromises on artistic vision etc. the reason that Hollywood continues to develop and lead the worldwide film industry is due mainly to this massive interest in investments rather than Martinis ideals of driving narratives etc. So long as this huge overbearing financial force dominates the way that the film industries are run, then I believe that digital filmmaking may struggle to break through and become a popular choice amongst investors. This is due primarily to the reluctance of investing in an unproven medium when an established one already exists. I believe when considering mainstream movies, the savings made by the removal of film stock from the process is so minimal that it will never act as an incentive to attract investors to a digital motion picture project. However, studio investors do seemingly have an issue with digital on an archival level; according to David Fincher. Fincher stated that the opposition from studios regarding his tapeless workflow led to several disputes. Fincher claimed that changing industry culture is the most difficult part of revolutionising the ways that motion pictures are made. Evidence can be seen of this reluctance to change in Finchers experiences with Sony Pictures, who deterred him from using a digital process for a motion picture, even though their mother company were the producers of the camera. We can perhaps conclude from this that Henning
Rdlein of ARRI is correct when he says that changes on this scale tend to be generational, as people (especially in the motion picture industry) are too resolute to change especially when large amounts of money are at stake. How can this resolve within the industry be overcome? Does digital simply need to bide its time for the current generation of celluloid loyalists to expire; or is there another way? I would suggest that from a purely financial perspective, digital needs an epiphany on the scale of The Blair Witch Project with astronomical returns from a tiny investment. This could be enough to persuade an investor that digital cinematography is the new wave of filmmaking that could see them earn massive amounts of money for a comparatively small investment. Assuming that this epiphany occurs, what other problems face this digital revolution? Naturally its the artists themselves. As I also discussed the directors of Hollywood are split with their opinions on digital, some embracing its qualities, others snubbing its existence. If directors (ala Spielberg and Tarantino) cannot be convinced to embrace the digital filmmaking process then the entire digital versus film debate is entirely academic. Many of these directors claim that their aversion to digital isnt through some deep pathological hatred or fear of change, it is due to the impractical nature of the cumbersome digital cameras that are currently available. The weight and design of these cameras is compounded further by their attachment to another cumbersome device of a RAID device (or similar). This however can be seen as a short term problem as increased storage space in physically smaller drives is developing rapidly. Although at present, as we ascertained earlier, this is not problematic for shoots that are filmed for the most part in a studio situation, however it is challenging when on location shooting is a must for a feature. Are there any obvious ways to overcome the short comings regarding the size and usability of these
digital filmmaking devices? The RED One perhaps is the closest thing that the film industry has to an accessible 4k digital camera at the moment, it remains to be seen whether its flash memory device will completely overcome the need for the camera to be attached to a RAID device. With a cost of under twenty thousand pounds (20,000) for the cameras body and lens, it is also a cost effective way to create digital motion pictures with the equivalent quality of the industry standard of 35mm film. Perhaps this small price tag will enable a low budget production to give weight to the digital motion picture argument. It is perhaps from an aesthetic standpoint that digital is lagging. As its image quality is so noticeably different (note: different not worse) from that of 35mm film that many despise it with a passion. However, it is refreshing to note that Directors of Photography like Newton Thomas Sigel have begun to embrace digitals different image. I believe that at present it is digital cinematographers striving for that filmic look that is ironically plotting digital cinematographys own downfall. With several high scale productions, as well as independent low budget productions undergoing a filtering process to create this grainy film look, digital cinematography is sealing its own fate by existing purely on 35mm films terms. This longing for the film look has also spread to the production of these high resolution 4k cameras, with Dalsa celebrating that its features are all directly comparable to that of 35mm film cameras, thus ensuring that the image created by these cameras are constantly living in the 35mm images shadow. How can this problem be overcome? Quite simply, more Directors of Photography need to adopt Sigels view that the digital image is not something to attempt to mask. If the digital image were to become the normal style of image for motion pictures; one could perhaps take the pessimistic view that film studios are deliberately maintaining this filmic look in order to remain on higher
ground from low budget digital productions as software (such as the Magic Bullet Suite) that apply these film grain looks are very expensive and results may not always be great or what the cinematographer is looking for. The bottom line being that digital needs to wear its digitality [sic] on its sleeve and be proud of its image in order to step out of the 35mm film images conventions. It was through this self consciousness of ones own cinematography that heavily contributed to the success of The Blair Witch Project. This was something that Fincher has been keen to express and accomplish with Zodiacs digitality [sic]. In reference to the practicalities of digital motion picture production, the controls that can be administered over the image in-camera leaves the 35mm film camera dead in its tracks. The seamless way that the digital image can also be manipulated for visual effects also leaves film treading water for survival. However where film has a severe advantage over digital is in its standardised workflow, from pre production right through to post and distribution. The result of this lack of a standardised workflow means that post houses, film schools and the like are reluctant to invest and upgrade their equipment to digital facilities unless they are certain that the infrastructure which they buy is future proofed to the nth degree; especially as the initial overheads will be significant sum of money. I would argue that once/if a standardised form of a digital workflow is established that we will see a boom in the amount of digital productions, however if digital motion pictures follow in the tracks of video productions for television, this could become problematic as companies copyright their own formats in an attempt to kill off their competition5. However, I would argue that film may avoid this unfortunate event that has cursed television as the film industry is not prepared to accept (read: embrace) a non standard format. Out
Note: Thompson Grass Valleys complaints regarding Japanese companies high definition cameras.
of necessity, perhaps digital motion picture camera producers will be forced into cooperation in order to successfully infiltrate the film industry. As I mentioned in my last chapter on the distribution of film, this subject is vastly debated and arguably is the main factor behind the slow development of digital motion pictures. As over 95% of cinema projectors still project film reels, even entire digital productions must be transferred to film for distributional purposes. This could become a large problem in digitals quest for industry dominance as that reliance on celluloid will always exist and will always undermine digitals credibility. Although I believe in Henning Rdleins theory that these changes are generational and celluloid projectors will be slowly phased out and will be replaced by digital if they become in dire need of repair etc. Also, as I previously mentioned, the continuous exorbitant leaps in telecommunicational [sic] technologies may make bit transfers a plausible means of distribution as opposed to the physical couriering of film reels. Although I believe that this is a severe impediment in the creation of the ultimate digital workflow, I believe that it is also a problem that will organically correct itself with time. However as I have already mentioned, I predict that Hollywoods digitalisation could become escalated with the creation of a digital project that would significantly enhance digital cinematographys profile. The concern with this approach is that a swift digitalisation of Hollywood may cause more damage than good as the format could be considered a quirky intermediate format that will rear its head occasionally as film buffs nod approvingly at the new technology that is at its disposal. A more lasting approach would be a slower more organic transition. With film slowly, yet gracefully taking its final bow after its epic contribution to the film industry.
To conclude, I would like to outline digital filmmakings objectives for the coming years in order to become a realistic, established and successful device for filmmaking in Hollywood and elsewhere. Although I believe that film will be around and will be dominant for at least another decade, digital will eventually lead to films death once a coherent and standardised workflow is established. This standardisation will have a knock on effect that would encourage investment opportunities in the digital format. Any shortcomings of digital will then self-right themselves as technologies and needs continue to develop and evolve. Until this standardisation occurs however, film will be winning the battle however I predict that digital will very much be the winner of the war. Plates:
1: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Digital_cinema_formats.svg (09/05/07)
Works Cited: Carnahan, Shawn Format Wars Broadcast Engineering, vol. 48 number 12, December 01, 2006 Page 10 Enticknap, Leo Moving Image Technology: From Zoetrope to Digital New York : Wallflower, 2005
Giardina, Carolyn Film Reporter: 3-D Gets 3ality Check with New Production Digs Hollywood Reporter, vol. 398 March 22, 2007 Page 7 Giardina, Carolyn 4ks Number Up at NAB Hollywood Reporter, vol. 399 April 13, 2007 Giardina, Carolyn Oakley Unveils Big Red One Hollywood Reporter, vol. 399 April 16, 2007 Online edition: http://www.hollywoodreporter.com Goldman, Michael Going Tapeless Millimeter, vol. 34 number 7, August 01, 2006 9-12 Hayward, Philip & Wollen, Tana Future Visions: New Technologies of the Screen London: Digital Film Institute, 1993 Kirsner, Scott The Big Pixel Hollywood Reporter, vol. 394 June 13, 2006 26-27 Kirsner, Scott Studios Shift to Digital Movies, but not Without Resistance New York Times, July 24, 2006 page 7 Lunde, Arne Garbo Talks!: Scandinavians in Hollywood, the talkie revolution, and the crisis of foreign voice ed. Fullerton, John Screen Culture: History and Textuality London: John Libbey Publishing, 2004. 21-39 Martini, Richard Van Goghs Ear ed. Taylor, Thom & Hsu, Melinda Digital Cinema: The Hollywood Insiders Guide to the Evolution of Storytelling California: Michael Wiese Productions, 2003. ix-xiii McCann, Alan (ed.) Transitions: Voices on the Craft of Digital Editing Birmingham: Friends of ED DVision, 2002. Pennington, Adrian NAB Focus: Digital Acquisition 25 Digital Comes of Age Broadcast, April 13, 2007 27-28 Riley, Jenelle Rodriguez and Tarantino: BACK to BACK! http://www.ugo.com/ugo/html/article/?id=17103 09/05/07
Willis, Holly New Digital Cinema: Reinventing the Moving Image London: Wallflower Press, 2005 Winston, Brian Technologies of Seeing: Photography, Cinematography and Television London : British Film Institute, 1996
Motion Pictures cited: Boyle, Danny (dir.) 28 Days Later British Film Council, 2002 Coppola, Francis Ford (dir.) The Godfather Paramount Pictures, 1972 Coppola, Francis Ford (dir.) The Godfather: Part II Paramount Pictures, 1974 Coppola, Francis Ford (dir.) The Godfather: Part III Paramount Pictures, 1990 Coppola, Francis Ford (dir.) Youth without Youth American Zoetrope, 2007 Coraci, Frank (dir.) Click Columbia Pictures Corporation, 2006 Fincher, David (dir.) Zodiac Warner Brother, 2007 Gibson, Mel (dir.) Apocalypto Icon Entertainment International, 2006Myrick, Daniel & Snchez, Eduardo (dir.) The Blair Witch Project Haxan Films, 1999 Jackson, Peter (dir.) Crossing the Line RED Ltd., 2007 (Not released commercially) Lucas, George (dir.) Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones Lucasfilm, 2002 Lucas, George (dir.) Star Wars 20th Century Fox, 1977 Lucas, George (dir.) Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back Lucasfilm, 1980 Lucas, George (dir.) Star Wars: Episode VI Return of the Jedi Lucasfilm, 1983 Mann, Michael (dir.) Collateral DreamWorks SKG, 2004 Mann, Michael (dir.) Miami Vice Universal Pictures, 2006 Meadows, Shane (dir.) Dead Mans Shoes Warp Films, 2004
Rodriguez, Robert (dir.) Once Upon a Time in Mexico Columbia Pictures Corporation, 2003 Rodriquez, Robert & Miller, Frank (dir.) Sin City Dimension Films, 2005 Rodriguez, Robert & Tarantino (dir.) Grindhouse Dimension Films, 2007 Singer, Bryan (dir.) Superman Returns Red Sun Productions Pty. Ltd., 2006 Spielberg, Steven (dir.) E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial Amblin Entertainment, 1982 Spielberg, Steven (dir.) Jurassic Park Universal Picture, 1993 Winkler, Irwin (dir.) Home of the Brave MGM, 2006 (Not released in UK)
Television Programmes cited: Ambrose, Stephen (wtr.) Band of Brothers DreamWorks SKG, 2001 Davies, Andrew (wtr.) Bleak House BBC, 2005 Davies, Russell T. Doctor Who BBC Wales, 2005-07 Meadows, Shane The South Bank Show ITV, April 29, 2007-05-03
E-mail Correspondence cited: English, Stuart - RED Digital Cinema - Workflow Wizard Personal e-mail December 08, 2006 Louka, Renos - ARRI (GB) Managing Director Personal e-mail February 27, 2007 Rdlein, Henning - ARRI, Head of Digital Film Personal e-mail February 28, 2007