The American Society of Cinematographers

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December 2008
Cinec Presents Awards
The 7th annual Cinec International Trade Fair for Motion Picture Technology welcomed manufacturers, vendors, filmmakers and other guests to Munich in September. 
MovieJib from MovieTech
Offering minimal setup time and high adaptability, MovieTech has added the MovieJib to its line of camera cranes.
Aspheric Wide Converter for EX1, EX3
Providing a 25-percent greater angle of view for Sony’s PMW-EX1 and EX3 camcorders — while maintaining full zoom capability — 16x9 Inc. has introduced the EX 0.75 Aspheric Wide Converter.
Denz Updates Bogie
Denz has redesigned its Bogie Dutch-angle camera support. 
Clear View with Cavision
Cavision now offers the MHE52 LCD viewfinder, designed specifically for use with the Sony HDR-TG1 portable HD camcorder and compatible with other camcorders featuring LCD screens measuring 3" or smaller. The viewfinder can also be used with digital still-photography cameras.
Focus Enhancements Teams with Canon
Focus Enhancements has partnered with Canon U.S.A. to develop the FS-CV Direct to Edit (DTE) Recorder for Canon’s XL and XH series of professional HDV cameras. 
Focus Enhancements and JVC Introduce Recorder
Focus Enhancements and JVC have introduced the MR-HD100 media recorder, designed to interface specifically with JVC’s GY-HD200E/201E and GY-HD251E series of ProHD  camcorders. 
Red One Shipping with /i Pins
Cooke Optics Ltd. and Red Digital Cinema have announced that all Red One cameras shipping since Sept. 12 include fully functional /i pins. Cooke’s /i “Intelligent” Technology enables film and digital cameras with /i-equipped PL-mount lenses to automatically record key lens and camera data for every film frame; the information can then be provided digitally to postproduction teams. 
Boris Expands Continuum with Flare
Boris FX has introduced Lens Flare, a new unit of the Boris Continuum family of visual-effects plug-ins. The unit includes both Lens Flare and Lens Flare Advanced; Lens Flare is streamlined for simple effects while Advanced provides more options for controlling the effect. 
Escape from New York
London-based training institute Escape Studios has established a New York office, offering its new online learning to U.S. students interested in pursuing professional computer-graphics production careers, as well as to veterans looking to add to their skill set.
EUE Screen Gems Builds Dream Stage
On Sept. 25, EUE Screen Gems Studios in Wilmington, N.C., broke ground on the third-largest indoor production stage in the U.S. The “Dream Stage,” as it was dubbed by Chris Cooney, COO and president of EUE Screen Gems Ltd., will be a column-free, 37,500-square-foot expanse with a grid height of 45' and floor dimensions of 150'x250'.
Russian World Studios Hosts Cinematography Conference
Russian World Studios, one of Russia’s leading entertainment companies, recently hosted the All-Russian Conference on Cinematography at its brand-new, full-scale production facility located in St. Petersburg.
TechCity Film Studios
Kingston, New York-based TechCity Film Studios has been granted certification as a qualified film studio by the New York State Governor’s Office of Motion Picture and Television Development, allowing film productions to use facilities at TechCity to meet the requirements set forth by the recent NYS Film Credit.

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Cinec Presents Awards

The 7th annual Cinec International Trade Fair for Motion Picture Technology welcomed manufacturers, vendors, filmmakers and other guests to Munich in September. At the close of the first day, the Bavarian Society for the Advancement of Film Technology presented this year’s CinecAward. Presented in six different categories, the award — comprising a certificate and a statue — congratulates innovative and trendsetting products and developments in motion-picture technology.

The CinecAward for camera technology was presented to Arri for the Arriflex D-21 digital camera in connection with the M-scope system. Through the M-scope system, the full sensor resolution can be used to achieve different aspect ratios, even up to CinemaScope.

Vantage Film GmbH took the award for optics for its Hawk V-Lite series of anamorphic lenses. The series incorporates cylindrical lenses with an extremely small radius to minimize the aerial distance between elements and allow them to be packed tightly into a small, short and lightweight housing.

The camera support/grip award went to RTS Rail & Tracking Systems GmbH for the company’s TrackRunner ENT. Accommodating any remote head and camera combination, the TrackRunner enables tracking shots at high speed over long distances.

Cmotion GmbH earned the camera-equipment award for its Cdisplay II video and data display. The ergonomically designed display significantly aids focus pullers by offering lens data and video on a single screen.

Four prizes were awarded in the lighting-engineering category: Arri won for the LED Pack Shot Kit, which displays an enormous color gamut; Bebob GmbH/Cineparts won for the Lux-LED, an onboard camera light; and Rosco won for both the Lite Pad — a low-cost, robust and multi-purpose fixture — and the View System — a two-part polarizing system that balances indoor and outdoor exposures without the need to constantly swap ND filters.

Finally, J.L. Fisher Inc. received a special award for its articulated skateboard wheels, which enable smooth and silent transitions from straight to curved track.

contact info:  
www.cinec.de
www.arri.de
www.vantagefilm.com
www.r-t-s.org
www.cmotion.eu
www.16x9inc.com
www.rosco.com
www.jlfisher.com
MovieJib from MovieTech

Offering minimal setup time and high adaptability, MovieTech has added the MovieJib to its line of camera cranes.

Based on the ABC-Light Crane 120, the MovieJib features a self-locking crank drive for easy balancing with counterweights, comfortable hand grips, and horizontal and vertical brakes. The MovieJib can be used in environments with limited space, and it can be mounted on a tripod or on a
MovieTech dolly.

With the crane head fully extended (measuring 7.05' from the pivoting axle to the crane head), it can support up to 66.14 pounds, and with it fully retracted (measuring 5.41'), it can support up to 88.19 pounds. When mounted on the tripod packaged with the MovieJib, the crane arm can reach a maximum height of 9.19'.

contact info:  
www.movietech.de
Aspheric Wide Converter for EX1, EX3

Providing a 25-percent greater angle of view for Sony’s PMW-EX1 and EX3 camcorders — while maintaining full zoom capability — 16x9 Inc. has introduced the EX 0.75 Aspheric Wide Converter.

The EX 0.75’s innovative, advanced technical design employs a state-of-the-art aspheric lens element to more effectively reduce geometric distortion and chromatic aberrations and improve off-axis wide-angle performance. Utilization of the aspheric lens surface allows the other elements of the converter to be smaller and lighter, making the unit especially well suited to handheld work. With a total of four multi-coated optical glass elements — including the aspheric lens — the EX 0.75 yields clean and vivid high-definition images.

The EX 0.75 attaches securely to the front of the EX1 or EX3 via a bayonet mount; installation and removal is quick and easy. For professional shading and light control, the Aspheric Wide Converter is fully compatible with the HU-104 Rubber Lens Shade, and it also interfaces with popular mattebox and sunshade systems, such as those from Chrosziel.

The suggested price of the EX 0.75 Aspheric Wide Converter is $1,335.

contact info:  
www.16x9inc.com
Denz Updates Bogie

Denz has redesigned its Bogie Dutch-angle camera support. 

Denz has redesigned its Bogie Dutch-angle camera support. Enabling precise, +/- 45-degree shots around the optical axis, the Bogie can be adjusted by a detachable handle or with a handwheel, and the new gearbox offers three speed reductions (1:1, 2.5:1 and 5:1). The Bogie also features a balancing system and a touch-and-go plate for mounting a camera.


contact info:  
www.denz-deniz.com
Clear View with Cavision

Cavision now offers the MHE52 LCD viewfinder, designed specifically for use with the Sony HDR-TG1 portable HD camcorder and compatible with other camcorders featuring LCD screens measuring 3" or smaller. The viewfinder can also be used with digital still-photography cameras.

While the compact size and light weight of many camcorders make them ideal for handheld location shooting, composition and focus are often difficult to check with the camcorders’ LCD screens, particularly in bright-light conditions. To address this limitation and make the camcorders more suitable to professional applications, the MHE52 features 6x optical magnification, greatly enhancing detail and permitting more accurate control over focus.

The MHE52 includes a neck strap and elastic fastening band. The neck strap is particularly beneficial when the viewfinder is used only intermittently; the user can quickly lift the viewfinder to his or her eye while shooting, holding it in place simply with pressure from the camera. This allows for quick access to the buttons on the LCD screen, or for the LCD screen to be closed between setups. Alternatively, the elastic fastening band can be used to keep the viewfinder attached to the LCD for longer periods of time.

contact info:  
www.cavision.com
Focus Enhancements Teams with Canon

Focus Enhancements has partnered with Canon U.S.A. to develop the FS-CV Direct to Edit (DTE) Recorder for Canon’s XL and XH series of professional HDV cameras. 

The ultra-portable FS-CV offers 100GB of hard drive video storage, enabling videographers to record edit-ready HDV or DV streams directly to disk. The recorder also gives Canon XL and XH users the ability to tag media with custom metadata while shooting, ensuring easy identification and management of media through all phases of production and post.

Video professionals can connect a browser-capable mobile device or laptop to the FS-CV via a wired or wireless connection (using an optional USB Wi-Fi dongle) and assign custom metadata. During post, users can easily transfer clips from the FS-CV to their NLE system; all information assigned during the shoot is transferred with the clip, saving users significant logging time.

The FS-CV also offers 25-percent weight reduction and 60-percent size reduction compared to the earlier FS-C recorder. The new recorder also features an ultra-rugged, shock-resistant 1.8" internal disk drive, along with a new fanless design for quiet operation. The newly designed user interface and menu system improve usability with an easy-to-navigate scroll wheel and 320x240 color backlit LCD display.

Increased DTE Technology support offered by the FS-CV includes QuickTime HDV 1080i50/60/24F/25F and 30F for Final Cut Pro, and MXF HDV 720p30 and 1080i50/60 for Avid NLE systems. New support for UDF disk formatting lets users record up to 1.5 hours in a single DV/HDV file.

contact info:  
www.focusinfo.com
Focus Enhancements and JVC Introduce Recorder

Focus Enhancements and JVC have introduced the MR-HD100 media recorder, designed to interface specifically with JVC’s GY-HD200E/201E and GY-HD251E series of ProHD  camcorders. The recorder seamlessly integrates native file recording technology, extended record times and the ability to wirelessly log custom metadata in the field while shooting.

With a wireless or wired mobile device or laptop, video professionals can access the MR-HD100 via a web browser, define metadata and assign it to the video while recording. Focus Enhancements’ Universal Metadata Engine (UME) ensures that metadata is compatible with Final Cut Pro and the Focus ProxSys Media Asset Management product line.

Other features and capabilities of the MR-HD100 include QuickTime HDV 720p24/25/30/50/60 support as well as MXF HDV 720p30 and 1080i50/60 support; a 1.8" internal disk drive in a rugged, portable and shock-resistant design; fanless operation; a removable Li-Ion battery pack for three hours of record time; a newly designed user interface; and a USB 2.0 interface for fast computer mounting. The recorder weighs only 12 ounces and can be mounted directly to the camera via an Anton/Bauer or IDX accessory bracket and the included mount cage. The unit also comes standard with a USB 802.11g Wi-Fi dongle.

contact info:  
www.focusinfo.com
Red One Shipping with /i Pins

Cooke Optics Ltd. and Red Digital Cinema have announced that all Red One cameras shipping since Sept. 12 include fully functional /i pins. Cooke’s /i “Intelligent” Technology enables film and digital cameras with /i-equipped PL-mount lenses to automatically record key lens and camera data for every film frame; the information can then be provided digitally to postproduction teams. 

The technology streamlines both production and post, saving significant time and costs while eliminating guesswork. Les Zellan, chairman of Cooke Optics, notes, “We are delighted that /i Technology is now live on the Red One. With schedules tighter than ever and demands for higher image quality, the need for production and post to work closely together has never been more important.”
  

 or www.red
.com.

contact info:  
www.cookeoptics.com
www.red.com
Boris Expands Continuum with Flare

Boris FX has introduced Lens Flare, a new unit of the Boris Continuum family of visual-effects plug-ins. The unit includes both Lens Flare and Lens Flare Advanced; Lens Flare is streamlined for simple effects while Advanced provides more options for controlling the effect. 

In addition to simulating flares in static shots, Boris Continuum Lens Flare can track a camera pan in the source footage to produce a more natural flare animation that matches the original in-camera effect. The Open GL-accelerated Lens Flare filters draw their real-time performance from the computer’s graphics card. The unit features a wide range of preset lens flares for quick application or as a starting point for a custom effect.

Lens Flare is the latest addition to the line of Boris Continuum plug-in units; previous releases include Chroma Key, Pan and Zoom, UpRez, and Motion Key. All Continuum units support Adobe After Effects, Adobe Premiere Pro, Apple Final Cut Pro and Apple Motion. For Avid systems, the Lens Flare filters are included as part of Boris Continuum Complete AVX.

Boris Continuum Lens Flare is immediately available for a recommended price of $99. Customers who purchase Lens Flare or any other individual Boris Continuum unit may credit the price toward the full Boris Continuum plug-in suite. For more information, visit www.borisfx.com.

contact info:  
www.borisfx.com
Escape from New York

London-based training institute Escape Studios has established a New York office, offering its new online learning to U.S. students interested in pursuing professional computer-graphics production careers, as well as to veterans looking to add to their skill set. The New York office will house a reselling division and a recruitment department; the latter is designed to help graduates find work in the industry with the assistance of Escape’s team of professionals. 

Escape has inaugurated its online learning platform with the launch of Maya Core, a bundle of six courses that take students from an introduction of Autodesk Maya through the fundamentals of animation, modeling, texturing and lighting. Developed and taught by world-class professionals, Maya Core includes 600 video tutorials.

“This has been a long-standing ambition of ours,” says Dominic Davenport, founder and CEO of Escape. “We are delighted to be able to offer our CG expertise across America.”

For more information and a free trial of Maya Core, visit www.escapestudios.com/mayacore.

contact info:  
www.escapestudios.com
EUE Screen Gems Builds Dream Stage

On Sept. 25, EUE Screen Gems Studios in Wilmington, N.C., broke ground on the third-largest indoor production stage in the U.S. The “Dream Stage,” as it was dubbed by Chris Cooney, COO and president of EUE Screen Gems Ltd., will be a column-free, 37,500-square-foot expanse with a grid height of 45' and floor dimensions of 150'x250'. The stage will also include a 60'x60' indoor tank with a depth of 10.5', one of the largest and deepest indoor production tanks in North America. 

EUE Screen Gems’ existing nine stages range in size from 7,200 square feet to 20,000 square feet; Stage 4 includes a tank measuring 25'x39'x4'. The 50-acre studio lot features spacious production suites with a bullpen, art rooms, a kitchen, offices with furnishings, digital phone service, high-speed Internet access, a commissary, and a screening theater with 35mm and HD projection. The studio also contains mill, metal, plaster and paint shops, prop and set-decoration warehouses, and wardrobe facilities with laundry. Bill Vassar, EUE Screen Gems Studios’ executive vice president, adds, “The studio lot has a company-managed, full-service lighting, grip and power business.”        

According to the North Carolina Film Office, film, television and commercial production companies spent over $160 million in North Carolina in 2007. “This new stage will attract larger and more technologically advanced productions to North Carolina,” says Vassar, who joined Cooney and over 200 guests for the groundbreaking ceremony. The Dream Stage is expected to be completed by early spring 2009.
    For more information, visit .

contact info:  
www.screengemsstudios.com
Russian World Studios Hosts Cinematography Conference

Russian World Studios, one of Russia’s leading entertainment companies, recently hosted the All-Russian Conference on Cinematography at its brand-new, full-scale production facility located in St. Petersburg.

The facility, which is the first dedicated production studio built in Russia in the past 60 years, celebrated its launch in conjunction with the 10th anniversary of RWS. “We are excited to celebrate our 10th anniversary with the beginning of production at this outstanding facility,” says Yuri Sapronov, co-founder of RWS. “The St. Petersburg location will provide the same premium quality and cutting-edge production services for which we are known, and allow us to expand our film and television slate.”

Features of the St. Petersburg studio include over 118,000 square feet, six sound stages, soundproof elephant doors that can withstand external sound levels up to 120 dBA, electric top-lift hoist systems (designed by Arri exclusively for RWS), a real-time ingest server for audio and video digitizing, a rental house with an extensive offering of production equipment, and a full range of production and post services. The next planned phase of construction for the facility will include a 21,500-square-foot stage, a special-effects studio, a film-processing lab and much more. 

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir V. Putin participated in the All-Russian Conference on Cinematography, which included demonstrations by Sony, Arri and MovieBird. Participants were also privy to a motion-capture demonstration, a look at various production trucks and trailers, and a behind-the-scenes look into the production of television series for Sistema Mass Media’s Hunting and Fishing channel. The event continued the celebration of 100 years of Russian cinema, following the opening of the first-ever Russian pavilion at the International Village at this year’s Cannes Film Festival.

RWS is a subsidiary of Russian media giant JSFC Sistema.

contact info:  
www.rwstudio.com
TechCity Film Studios

Kingston, New York-based TechCity Film Studios has been granted certification as a qualified film studio by the New York State Governor’s Office of Motion Picture and Television Development, allowing film productions to use facilities at TechCity to meet the requirements set forth by the recent NYS Film Credit.

“It’s a monumental development,” says Hudson Valley Film Commissioner Laurent Rejto. “This will allow film productions to shoot locally and qualify for the film credit without having to relocate outside of the Hudson Valley. The lack of a qualified site has always been the missing link in getting films to commit to the region.”

NYS Film Credit regulations state that productions must use a soundstage measuring at least 7,000 square feet in order to comply. TechCity is a 27-building campus located in the heart of New York State’s emerging technology corridor. The site previously served as the world headquarters for IBM, and available spaces measure from 7,000 square feet to over 200,000. (Smaller soundstages in the area, including several at the Seven21 Media Center in Kingston, do not meet the size requirements, though they do offer excellent resources.)
    For more information, visit www.techcityny.com.

contact info:  
www.techcityny.com