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Will Lucas revert back to film?

Discussion in 'Lucasfilm Ltd. In-Depth Discussion' started by Jedi knight Pozzi, Nov 22, 2002.

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  1. Jedi knight Pozzi

    Jedi knight Pozzi Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Apr 2, 2000
    Sorry if this is the wrong forum for this. :)

    [link=]The link.[/link]

    Kodak Introduces Digital Film Stock
    Fri, Nov 22, 02 12:15:43 AM EST

    Reuters reports on a new technology emerging in the technical sector of cinematography. A mention of Lucas is made in light of the fact that he is so pro-digital. Here's a clip:
    Many movie directors like Steven Spielberg (news) swear by film, arguing that it provides better quality images for audiences, Others like George Lucas (news) say digital tape offers just as good quality when shot on high-end "24P" cameras and more choices to enhance special effects and other details in editing.
    Vision2 should help meet both needs, explained Morelli.

    The high-speed film stock captures more details of a picture, whether in bright light or darkness, and because it captures more data, editors and cinematographers can do more to manipulate images once converted to digital files for editing.

    The same enhancements are available in low-budget and independent movie arena using 16mm film, where the young Spielbergs and Lucas's generally get started on their careers.

    Those filmmakers, who have rapidly adopted digital video because of the lower cost for tapes and the ease of editing, might be persuaded to move back to 16mm film.

    "This film stock, for 16mm, is a pretty big breakthrough," Morelli said. "I think today most (low-budget) filmmakers want to shoot film, but it comes down to price. And I think you will start to see those filmmakers make a decision to use film, because of this stock."
  2. Darth_Scarlet

    Darth_Scarlet Jedi Youngling star 1

    May 20, 2002
    I'm no huge techie but, I think that in 10 years it will all be digital.
  3. malducin

    malducin Jedi Padawan star 4

    Oct 23, 2001
    Will George go back to film? No. Never.

    Will it all be digital in 10 years? I highly doubt it. HD is still inferior to film in many respects, even Fred Meyer at ILM explained about year and a half ago at SIGGRAPH. My opinion is that it's good enough that it can be comparable to film. With rapid advances in 10 years the gap will be much less and more pervalent but I don't think it will have replaced film. The cameras are a bit cumbersome still and I guess we need more of those plus the all important Panavision lenses.

    The other problem which might be bigger is the distribution problem. Theatres don't want to spend huge amounts of money to scrap their projectors and use new digital ones. As it is, many movie theatres are barely surviving. Studios don't want to pay for them or subsidize them. If they were smart they would subsidize them for theatres, after all they are gonna save tons in printing costs. That investement could probably pay itself over very quickly, but leave it to studios to make bonehead decisions.

    Their is also the questions of standards and media survivability. 35mm is standard all over the world, you can develop a piece of film anywhere in the world. Original movies and prints from the turn of the century still have survived (although they have deteriorated but the problem is that few are interested in preserving and restoration). On the other hand how long are HD standards gonna last (for projectors there are competing ones). Heck burned CDs only last a decade reliably, tapes and discs might last a bit more, but are nowhere near what film can last.

    Interesting times.
  4. Vonn

    Vonn Jedi Padawan star 4

    Jun 3, 2000

    Standard HD (1920x1080) may be inferior to film.

    But, the next generation of digital camera from Sony will sport a 10 megapixel resolution (the general megapixel equivalent for 35mm is 6 megapixel), which gives higher quality in addition to more flexibility in editing. Episode 3 will be shot on this newer camera.

    As for Vision2, it sounds remarkable similar to what some other film guy was trying to do (get filmmakers to capture at 48 frames per second instead of 24). A quicker shudder speed like that typically results in a sharper image. However, a quicker shudder speed does not make up for more color information (which is what the newer digital cameras with higher resolutions will have).

    In other words, no. George will not go back to film. AOTC has convinced him that his films look better in the 100% digital arena. Having seen AOTC projected digitally and seeing the DVD on an HDTV with progressive scan player, I agree with him.
  5. malducin

    malducin Jedi Padawan star 4

    Oct 23, 2001
    Well I read some stuff on comparing film to the HD cameras and supposdely, depending on stock and speed, you would need to have a 30 megapixel HD camera to at least be comparable to stocks used in the film indutry. And that's only resolution wise, though that is not completely correct you are actually comparing power or resolution via how many line pairs per milimeter can be resolved. And this doesn't take into account dynamic range.

    Anyway I think HD is good enough for a lot of work, hough not yet superior or even equal to film.
  6. Padme Bra

    Padme Bra Administrator Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Jul 2, 1999
    Lucas won't go back to film. The film supplier industry has a lot of power. It would be analogous to someone inventing a fusion powered car and the oil companies lobbying to supress it. That's why I think Spielberg makes the statements that he makes. Lucas however is somewhat anti-Hollywood and can finance his own films, which is part of what I admire him. He'll never win another Academy Award, but he won't play by Hollywood's rules.

    As for digital not being equal to film, they played AOTC on a multi-story screen at IMAX. Can you honestly say that the quality wasn't as good as film? If so then you're more observant than I am.
  7. Jedi knight Pozzi

    Jedi knight Pozzi Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Apr 2, 2000
    [link=]Just throwing this in for, well, no real good reason.[/link]
  8. malducin

    malducin Jedi Padawan star 4

    Oct 23, 2001
    I agree with you PadmeBra that that is one reason I admire Lucas, being outside the Hollywood establishment.

    As far as the film supplier industry I disagree somewhat. If movies studios suddenly shifted you betta companies like Panavision, Kodak, Arriflex and others would shift (some of them have done, Panavision with the lenses, and Kodak was a pioneer with Cineon). The studios have potentuially too much to win but there is too much inertia to just turn the cinema world to digital overnight.

    And as for digital not being equla to film, well bioth have advantages and disadvantages. From all I've seen, and the technical stuff I've read, film is still superior. Even on digital you could see some artifacts. In scenes that wer shot on real sets but were dark (inside the transport to Naboo or certain Coruscant apartment shots), you could see video noise on the very dark parts (it kinda looked like film grain). The dynamic range of HD is less than on film, there is no two ways about that, it's something that can be physically measured. Film has something like 11 or 13 stops of dynamic range. I believe the HD cameras used in ep. 2 had something like 9 stops (though I would really need to check specs or the SIGGRAPH course notes). In most situation it might be fine but in extreme lighting situations it might not be good as film. Seems the HD cameras show a little more artifacts in low light situations than regular film. Color depth is also greater in film than HD, the curve for film is larger than for the Cinealta cameras. Granted, electronics and tech advance very rapidly as opposed to traditional celuloid technology which is already pretty refined (after all there has been decades, heck over a century of use and refinements).

    The other issue is projectors, which have a slight less resolution than the cameras. Just looked how awful the credits looked projected digitally. While credits might not interest almost anyone it's an issue, imagine when you have to see on screen graphics. Anyway it'll also get better.

    All that said, yes, my jaw dropped seeing Ep. 2 in digital. I was kinda sceptic but openminded going in. I'm convinced digital is the way to go and we are at the dawn of a new era.

    Imax is a bit different as it's a 70mm format, even higher quality than 35mm. So if HD is not superior to regular film yet it probably wont compare straight to Imax. Besides the film grain might obsucure any artifacting caused \by the Imax enlargement process, so in the end it all balances out and looks good.
  9. WormieSaber

    WormieSaber Jedi Master star 5

    Oct 22, 2000
    Lucas will go digital all the way. I doubt he will ever wimp out on all that he has worked up about the digital revolution. I for one am pleased that it is faster and quicker (and less expensive) to shoot digitally, but then again, being a filmmaker myself, I've shot a lot of films on all kinds of formats. There is just something about film; you can manipulate the colors more, you can play with exposure...there are so many natural tricks you can do on film that I have never seen done digitally. Of course, you can mimick it on a computer...but I'm old-fashioned. Film is a spiritual artifact to the filmmaker. :)
  10. rumsmuggler

    rumsmuggler Force Ghost star 7

    Aug 31, 2000
    We shall see...
  11. Ardens_Furore

    Ardens_Furore Jedi Padawan star 4

    May 14, 2001
    I don't think he will go back to film. I recently got a digital still camera. It's not as good as a film camera but I will not use a film camera again because digital is much more convenient. I think Lucas is the same way. He can directly take the image into the computer and manipulate it without waiting. With film, you can't do that.
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