O’Leary recalls, “The yacht was high on a platform, which didn’t give us much overhead space to work with, so we decided to basically lay in a blanket of Image 80s as high as we could get them and then stretch Full Grid Cloth beneath that. That rendered a broad, soft toplight. From there, we created sun for backlight using two 50K SoftSuns gelled with 1⁄2 CTO, one on a scissor lift and one on a Condor. Fortunately, the yacht was designed to have a structure over the top of the middle of the deck, and that enabled us to separate the light from the SoftSun on the Condor. That gave us a hard, distinct sunlight that we could use as a three-quarter backlight. We controlled many units with a DMX board so we could switch certain bulbs on or off.”
Another notable aspect of the shoot was the second unit’s work capturing aerial plates using a prototype of the Canon C500. Prieto tested the camera for more extensive use, but because it was still in the prototype stage and there were multiple Alexas available, he decided it was unnecessary. However, Legato found it ideal for the aerial work because of its small size and light weight; his team was able to rig it onto the nose of a remote-controlled Octocopter and fly it over beachfront property on Long Island. (Local rules prohibited the use of a full-sized helicopter in the area.) “The C500 weighs about 7 pounds, and the image quality was excellent, even with a prototype,” Legato says. “Using the Octocopter allowed us to get shots we couldn’t have with a normal helicopter.”
Throughout the shoot, Deluxe Laboratories processed the production’s negative and created dailies, scanning the negative at 2K and using Colorfront’s On Set Dailies for the timing, which was done in P3 log for Avid DNX115 dailies. Dailies colorist Steve Bodner applied viewing LUTs created by EFilm to the Alexa material that emulated Kodak Vision 2383 print stock. To communicate his creative intent to Bodner during the shoot, Prieto recalls that he “did basic CDLs on set for the Alexa footage using a viewing LUT from EFilm, and sent written notes for the scenes shot on film negative.” The cinematographer usually watched Blu-ray dailies at home on a calibrated monitor provided by Deluxe.
At press time, Prieto was preparing to commence the final grade at EFilm in Hollywood with colorist Yvan Lucas. EFilm New York did a 6K scan of the negative for this work, and EFilm Hollywood was set to do a 4K filmout.
Although Prieto had previously worked on somewhat similar terrain when he shot Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps for Oliver Stone (AC Oct. ’10), Scorsese’s project and methods were totally new experiences for him. “I learned a lot from him,” says Prieto. “I remember when [1st AD] Adam Somner and I first sat down with him and went through his shot list. Just listening to him explain why he wanted to use a static camera in a particular place, a mobile camera in a different scene, a big crane move, or whatever, was incredible. I felt like I was at some kind of an amazing seminar with a great professor. It was a great joy to build on his ideas and be a creative partner to such a brilliant mind.”