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class="style16"> Matching 35mm & Cinegyro HD Footage

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I have a 35mm TV commercial shoot coming up that has a few helicopter aerials in it. Due to logistics and locations and specific shots we are looking at using a Cinegyro Cineflex V14 HD camera mount on the helicopter. With the HDC F950 camera. This is recording HDcamSR to an SRW1 deck. (with the option of going 4:2:2 or 4:4:4 to the deck).


How is this likely to match with the 35mm stuff ?


Both will be telecined to digital betacam for a standard definition television broadcast. So I am thinking we can grade the HDcamSR footage to try to match the 35mm.


I saw a demo reel a while ago with this combination intercut and I couldn't really spot the HD stuff. Any experiences regarding the integration of these two formats ? Will be shooting 25p for the aerials (normal framerate in New Zealand is 25fps).
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MATHEW KNIGHT - Director of Photography
Wellington,
New Zealand
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>>I have a 35mm TV commercial shoot coming up that has a few helicopter aerials in it. Due to logistics >>and locations and specific shots we are looking at using a Cinegyro Cineflex V14 HD camera mount on >>the helicopter. With the HDC F950 camera


Matthew,


This was done with great success in the film "Mission Impossible 3" shot by my friend David Nowell, ASC, where he shot the aerials with a stabilized Sony 950 and the primary photography was done with film.


Bill Bennett, ASC
Cinematographer
Los Angeles, CA USA



Bill Bennett wrote :


>>This was done with great success in the film "Mission Impossible 3" shot by my friend David Nowell, >>ASC


There are two aerial sequences in the film (if memory serves me) - one in a wind turbine field and the second over Shanghai. Was this method used for both sequences or just the latter (I seem to remember something about difficulty over permissions with the Chinese authorities in the ASC mag' article)?


Both sequences took place at night which must help some...


Tom Townend,
Cinematographer/London



The turbine field was outside of Palm Springs CA. We shot the night plate sequence from an A-Star helicopter with 6 Arri 435 cameras synced together. That would be film, you know. There were 2 out the left side and 2 out the right side and 2 on a Tyler super nose mount on the front. Worked quite well. I don’t know about the China part, as it is extremely difficult to shoot aerials there, as I am finding out. I am due to shoot aerials in Hong Kong next month and we are getting more and more restrictions every day, had to cut some of our shots.


Wayne Baker
LA AC/Tech
Currently in London shooting a Bat



Wayne Baker wrote :


>>I don’t know about the?China?part, as it is extremely difficult to shoot aerials there, as I am finding out.? I >>am due to shoot aerials in? Hong Kong? Next month and we are getting more and more restrictions every >>day, had to cut some of our shots.


I shot a feature in western China last year and due to Chinese government restrictions no civilians were allowed to go in any helicopters. Therefore I was forced to do my helicopter shots with a miniature remote helicopter. This of course brings with it all of the problems that I find with these things- stability, quality of image due to restrictions on lens weight, pilot ability, etc. Let's just say that post had a lot of stabilizing and reframing to do, which only? Exacerbated?the image quality issue due to needing to shoot wider and zoom in.

Roberto Schaefer, asc



>>Pictorvision has the entire Wescam rental inventory including a few of the older 36" video systems. >>These have no restricted components


Which is a bit ironic, since the original Wescam concept was developed by Knox Levitt at Westinghouse Canada for the U.S. military as a stabilized remote controlled helicopter machine gun platform during the Vietnam war era (late'60's).


Bob Kertesz
BlueScreen LLC
Hollywood, California



Bob Kertesz wrote :


>>Which is a bit ironic, since the original Wescam concept was developed by Knox Levitt at Westinghouse >>Canada for the U.S. military as a stabilized remote controlled helicopter machine gun platform during the >>Vietnam war era


I think you have the Wescam stuff and the 2 axis gyro/ servo stabilized mount Mark Weingartner refers to flopped.


Having dealt with some ancient wescams , I'd say the recoil from any military weapon would wreck a Wescam mechanism. The manuals I read at the time were original Wescam manuals supplied to the US Navy. Manuals indicated that the camera mounts were designed for photography of re- entering space capsules from a ship. I saw photos in the manuals of and Arri S with a very long lens mounted or of a 35 mm still photo camera, again with a telephoto lens.


Meanwhile the "winged vision" mount referred to by Mark Weingartner was a "FLIR " mount from a AC 130 gunship re- purposed for television use and was quite good. The fellow who had the mount did quite a lot of blimp work with the longest television zooms available.


Wescam were X-Y-Z stabilized to a point and the winged vision mount was only X-Y AFAIK.


Mark Smith
DP NYC



>>Which is a bit ironic, since the original Wescam concept was developed by Knox Levitt at Westinghouse >>Canada for the U.S. military as a stabilized remote controlled helicopter machine gun platform during the >>Vietnam war era"

"I think you have the Wescam stuff and the 2 axis gyro/ servo stabilized mount Mark Weingartner refers to flopped...the camera mounts were designed for photography of re- entering space capsules from a ship"
There are a lot of stories (in the Naked City), apparently. I've had another email saying the Wescam ball was designed as a gun sight for tanks.


The Vietnam story was told to me by Knox Levitt himself while he was training me on setup and use of the Wescam ball in the early seventies.


Perhaps it's a matter of "I could tell you what the original design was for, but then I'd have to kill you." I was the engineer who went with it and set it up for Evel Knievel's Snake River Canyon "jump" in late '74. Hands down the craziest shoot I've ever done.


Bob Kertesz
BlueScreen LLC
Hollywood, California



Mark Smith wrote :


>>Having dealt with some ancient wescams , I'd say the recoil from any military weapon would wreck a >>Wescam mechanism.


Some versions of Puff had a 105mm howitzer installed which seriously affected the airframe. Until the airframes were re-enforced, the recoil from the 105 wrecked more than the sighting mechanisms on C-47s.
Attempts at installing a 155mm were not successful. The successor version using a C-130 airframe, currently in use, was more robust.


Some friends of mine tried mounting .50 caliber Brownings in a Huey. They said the recoil shook the rivets out of the door frame. They then tried it on inner tubes and the recoil nearly shook the gunner out of what was left of the door frame.


Brian Heller
IA 600 DP



Bob Kertesz stated :


>>the original Wescam concept was developed by Knox Levitt at Westinghouse Canada for the U.S. >>military as a stabilized remote controlled helicopter machine gun platform"


This is a new one on me. While I know the development was military in nature, all of the early applications I'm familiar with involved surveillance such as a mast mounted stills camera as well as a camera platform for a periscopter (tethered helicopter). I have also heard that the gyros first used by Knox were developed for an ICBM. The 36" video Wescam I mentioned isn't nearly that old. It was however old enough that Wescam had managed to find suitable alternatives to the restricted items.


These older systems are all mass gyro technology (passive stabilization) based on Knox's original design.


Stephen Pizzo
Element Technica
Los Angeles, CA



Brian Heller wrote :


>>Some friends of mine tried mounting? .50 caliber Brownings in a Huey.? They said the recoil shook the >>rivets out of the door frame.? They then tried it on inner tubes and the recoil nearly shook the gunner out of >>what was left of the door frame.


Then your friends invented the disclaimer " kids don't try this at home"


Mark Smith
DP NYC



You may certainly mix the footage and successfully grade it - look at Planet Earth, 16,35,HD.


Phil Savoie
DP Montana
www.philsavoie.com