Intercutting Between Higher and Low Speed Stocks



I have a shoot coming up soon and at times I want a more organic daylight look instead of an obviously "lit" for daylight environment. I plan on using the Fuji Reala 8692 500 D stock for these INT. scenes. My EXT. daylight scenes will be shot using the Fuji F-64 D stock. My main concern is that some scenes we have characters looking out windows (shot OTS/dirty). In these cases I will likely be swapping between stocks to get the exposure I want for my EXT environment. We don't have any big guns and most of INT. Daylight will be done with Kino's and Daylight corrected china balls. Do you think that using both these stocks in the same scene is going to give me a far to varied look? Has anyone intercut with these two stocks before? Should I use a 250 D stock instead? Suggestions please.

We're shooting mighty soon.

Thank you kindly,

Joshua Whitford
Cinematographer, Calgary AB


IMHO I would not intercut these stocks within the same scene just to "get the exposure" for the windows. These stocks are at opposite ends of the spectrum. The Fuji F-64D stock is a lovely fine grain stock and the 8692 500D is quite grainy but possibly perfect for your "organic daylight look." I assume you are shooting S16mm as you quote the 8692 so these grain characteristics will be quite pronounced. This should be no problem if the INT and EXT scenes are standalone and this look fits your narrative but if the INT and EXT scenes are to be intercut so the two locations are really one scene I would be wary. The 250D would be a safer bet but maybe the two looks might serve the story better? Read the script on an emotional and subtext level and discuss with your director. Sometimes it pays to make brave decisions and break the rules and sometimes it doesn't.

Tom Gleeson DOP

IMHO I would not intercut these stocks within the same scene just to "get the exposure" for the windows. These stocks are at opposite ends of the spectrum. Hmm...well, the windows will encompass most of the frame when we see outside so maybe I'll use the 64 D for one take and then use an ND6 or ND9 filter with my 500 Reala for the other. I am beginning to feel that the smoother 64D stock whilst looking out will serve better purpose to the story though as the bedroom INT. with the 500 is going to be in the mood of after a night of sexy partying.

Joshua Whitford

The question to ask is : why are you cutting to a completely different film stock for one shot in a scene? If the difference between stocks is going to be jolting, does that serve the story?

Are you trying to draw the viewers' attention to the outside world for that one shot, or are you just doing it because all your other exteriors will be shot with the 64D and you don't want to stop down a bunch and use lots of ND with the higher speed stock? The former has to do with serving the story; the latter is a technical choice that may or may not serve the story.

To exaggerate: If you were shooting indoors on black-and-white film, and the exteriors in colour, would it make sense to shoot the interior OTS shots looking out the window in colour, even if that was the only colour shot in a black-and-white scene? That makes a pretty strong statement. Is that the statement you want to make? Cutting between 500D and 64D will be almost as extreme, especially in 16mm. What are you saying by doing that?

It's always about the story. Always, always, always. What does the
story say to do?


Art Adams | dp

San José | CA | USA

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