AJA HELO powers Big Red live streams

AJA HELO powers Big Red live streams

Cornell University Athletics’ multimedia and production arm found a solution to its regular streaming of matches, many times simultaneous: it uses AJA HELO H.264 streaming and recording devices.

For Cornell University Athletics’ multimedia and production arm, downtime is unusual. Between streaming regular matches for 16 sports to ESPN+ and the international Ivy League Network on Stretch Internet, as well as ancillary content to its social media channels, the department keeps a packed schedule. To manage the workload and bring Big Red fans high quality video coverage of their favorite sports, it uses AJA HELO H.264 streaming and recording devices in a range of streaming configurations, including direct RTMP streaming to ESPN+ and Stretch Internet.

The HELOs support nearly every live sports production at Cornell, from basketball to gymnastics, with two units located in a central control room on campus and the third reserved for a flypack. Camera feeds at each sports venue are connected to a flypack that travels to each game and can receive up to eight feeds. The signals are transmitted via NDI across the network to the control room, and dependent upon the number of productions and timing, are fed through a video production system or a laptop running Wirecast, switched and distributed to HELO for delivery to ESPN+ for national viewers and to live sports streaming provider Stretch Internet for audiences outside the U.S.

AJA HELO powers Big Red live streams

Feed matches ESPN+ standards

Most weekends, the team is juggling multiple simultaneous streams, in which case it will reserve its HELOs for standalone RTMP streaming to ESPN+. “HELO gives us a ton of flexibility in setting up live streams, so even on busy weekends, we know that we’re always covered, regardless of the number of streams we have to produce. Being able to offload streams to HELO also reduces the strain on our video production systems and streaming software,” shared John Lukach, assistant director of athletics for multimedia and production, Cornell University Athletics.

“Having the ability to stream RTMP – he adds –  is also huge and it’s crazy that such a little device can produce a feed that matches ESPN+ standards. It’s also incredibly easy to use; just call into transmission, as you would with a normal production, to get the RTMP address, type it into the HELO web UI, push a button, and you’re streaming; it’s that simple.”

AJA HELO powers Big Red live streams

Other uses for the AJA HELO

As Lukach uses the device, he continues to find new applications. “I’ve also found the HELOs useful when talent needs to see a live feed of the game on site; we can easily loop it out via the cable straight to the monitor, or if coaches want a recording post-game for reviewing plays, I can just record the feed and hand them an SD card with the recording right after the match,” he added. “We continue to invest in HELOs because they’re versatile, portable and easy to use, and look forward to adding more to our arsenal of gear.”

AJA’s HELO allows users to simultaneously stream video signals to Web Content Delivery Networks while encoding and recording H.264 files to SD cards, USB storage or network-based storage with the push of a button. Supporting a range of professional workflows, the H.264 streaming, recording and encoding device includes 3G-SDI and HDMI inputs and outputs and the power to handle up to 1080p recording formats among other features.

Autodesk software used by 2020 VFX and Animation Academy Award nominees

Autodesk software used by 2020 VFX & Animation Academy Award nominees

Studios around the world power BAFTA, Golden Globe, Annie and VES nominated films with Autodesk M&E software, to create the most unique VFX and animated films. A story repeated in 2020.

There is a common link between anything from galactic space adventures, to photoreal wildlife and African savannahs, to heroic battles: many of them are created using Autodesk 3ds Max, Arnold, Flame, Lustre, Maya and Shotgun, Autodesk’s Media & Entertainment Collection of tools that have helped teams across the globe collaborate and create standout visuals for this year’s top VFX and animated films nominated for Oscars, BAFTAs, Golden Globes, Annies and VES Awards.

“For over 25 years, Autodesk tools have helped artists create the most spectacular worlds, characters, and effects, and bring dazzling cinematic masterpieces to life for global audiences,” said Jocelyn Moffatt, Entertainment Industry Marketing Manager, Autodesk. “We are committed to providing creative teams with the most innovative VFX, animation, and collaboration tools, so they can tackle any creative challenge that comes through their door.”

From 1917 to The Lion King

Autodesk M&E software are in use by world-leading VFX facilities who worked on all five Academy Award nominees in the VFX category, including 1917, Avengers: Endgame, The Irishman, The Lion King and Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, as well as many of the nominees in the Animation category, with films including How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World, Klaus, Missing Link and Toy Story 4. Across the 2020 awards season, Autodesk M&E customers have been recognized for outstanding achievement in VFX and animation, including a best animated film Golden Globe win for LAIKA’s, Missing Link, among other for BAFTA, Annie and VES nominees.

The craft and precision involved in making Missing Link is remarkable; the team at LAIKA pioneered a unique CGI-to-3D printing workflow to bring its signature handcrafted stop-motion look to the screen. “For Missing Link, characters’ facial performances were rigged and animated in Maya, and each facial expression was exported as an OBJ, voxelized, sliced for print using Cuttlefish from Fraunhofer IGD to ensure color accuracy and detail, and then sent to a Stratasys color 3D printer. Over 106,000 unique faces were printed for the production of the film,” explained Brian McLean, director of Rapid Prototyping at LAIKA. “Sometimes 24 unique faces were needed for one second of film—Lionel alone had more than 39,000 and Link had 27,000.”

Autodesk software used by 2020 VFX & Animation Academy Award nominees
Missing Link from LAIKA

Congratulations to the nominees

All of these assets had to be meticulously managed and tracked, “All shot assignments, schedules, plate information, and reference materials were published to and organized using Shotgun Software which we’ve used at LAIKA on all of our productions since ParaNorman,” concluded Steve Emerson, visual effects supervisor at LAIKA.

Now the company congratulates all of the Autodesk M&E customers whose work has been recognized among these nominees and winners including: Animal Logic, Cinesite, Company 3, Digital Domain, DreamWorks Animation, Framestore, ILM, LAIKA, Method Studios, MPC, Sony Pictures Imageworks, SPA Studios, Walt Disney Animation Studios and Weta Digital.

The Autodesk Media & Entertainment Collection includes Maya (includes the Bifrost Graph Editor, plus 15 entitlements to Bifrost engines, to run simulations on a compute farm), 3ds Max and Arnold 5-license pack. The collection also includes performance capture, reality capture, digital sculpting, and other specialty software. The entire collection is available for $2,145 per year, single-user access.  For more information visit Autodesk’s website and the area dedicated to the Autodesk M&E software.

The Best Filmmaking Deals of the Week (2.06.20)

Headlining our Deals of the Week, save $200 on the Sony a7 III mirrorless camera.

This week in filmmaking deals: There are a bunch of deals on lenses right now. You can save 33% on the Tamron SP 45mm f/1.8 Di VC USD lens, as well as 37% on the Samyang 35mm f/1.4 Auto Focus Lens for Sony E-mount. If you’re in the market for a mirrorless camera, this Sony a7 III kit, which includes an FE 28-70mm lens, will save you $200. Also, the SanDisk 256GB Extreme PRO memory card is currently $70.99, down from $99.95. Finally, Adorama is running a special on the JVC GY-HM250 4K camcorder, bringing down the price to just $1699.

Tamron SP 45mm f/1.8 Di VC USD Lens

[deal id=”116771″]

If you’re looking for fast glass, you might want to take a look at the Tamron SP 45mm f/1.8 Di VC USD lens. It features an f/1.8 aperture, close-focusing abilities (MOD of 11.4″), Vibration Compensation (VC) system, as well as High-speed AF with USD. This beast usually retails for $599, but you can get it now for $399.

SanDisk 256GB Extreme PRO Memory Card

[deal id=”116776″]

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Sundance 2020: Spotlight on Katelin Arizmendi, DP of “Charm City Kings”

Charm City Kings,  directed by Angel Manuel Soto, took home the U.S Dramatic Special Jury Award for Ensemble Cast this past Saturday at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival. From Executive Producers Jada Pinkett Smith, Will Smith, and James Lassiter, comes the story of a young man named Mouse, who hopes to take his place in the Midnight Clique, a notorious group of  dirt-bike riders in Baltimore, among whom who his late brother had ridden to glory and tragedy. To learn how the incredible performances of this award-winning cast went from set to screen, read our interview with the film’s cinematographer Katelin Arizmendi below. 

Jahi appears in Charm City Kings by Angel Manuel Soto, Sundance Film Festival. Courtesy of Sundance Institute

Name: Katelin Arizmendi
Film: Charm City Kings (dir. Angel Manuel Soto)
Competition Category: US Dramatic Competition
Camera Body: Alexa XT and Alexa Mini
Glass: Panavision Ultra Speed Mark II + Detuned Ultra Speeds

cinema5D:  So you went the university route. How has that influenced the trajectory of your career?

KA: I studied my undergrad at UC Santa Cruz which was essentially all film theory and a few experimental film classes. I shot on a 1 chip camera where I wrote, directed, acted in, and edit- ed a few weird experimental films. Needless to say, I had no idea what I was doing when I graduated and needed to continue my film studies in a more hands-on collaborative setting. The one thing I took away from my undergrad, however, was the mentality of my film teachers : “Screw Hollywood. You need to be different and experiment. Break the rules.” I think that’s carried with me through the years.

I decided to study my MFA at Academy of Art University in San Francisco, mostly being lured by the chance to shoot 16mm and 35mm. Truthfully, I learned technicality of working with film cameras, but the lighting department lacked there and the way the school was structured, I ended up doing a lot of my own projects, hardly collaborating with other students.

cinema5D: So grad school forced you to be really self-sufficient. 

KA: Only one director asked me to shoot his thesis project, so I had to come up with ideas for the other 4 thesis films I was required to shoot. Because of this, I continued to make experimental fashion films and music videos after school to build a more interesting reel than the work that came to me from the tech-world in the bay area. Building that reel on my own led me to shoot more creative commercials and music videos at the beginning of my career.

Katelin Arizmendi on the set of Charm City Kings.

cinema5D: Can you pinpoint a particular movie or filmmaker that nudged you toward cinematography?

KA: I was (and still am) hugely influenced by Buffalo 66. There’s something about that film quality, the stock they used, the way they held on shots, the things you don’t see, the way faces are cropped, the unintentional romance of the characters, use of slow-motion, bizarre but brilliant coverage of the scene at his parents kitchen table…I still feel all kinds of ways when I watch it today.

Films like Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Diving Bell and the Butterfly, and Being John Malkovich influenced me because I felt they used experimental cinematography in a really effective way for the story, pushing the boundaries but not distracting from the narrative. You actually feel something deep and emotive from the subjective camerawork.

cinema5D: Fast-forward to now, how do you like to run your camera department?

KA: I like my camera and G&E departments to feel like a family. I hate egos and like to believe I don’t act above anyone on set. I’m only as good as my crew. Having like-minded people that are respectful of everyone on set, who are passionate about the project, and who bring a good attitude every day is super important to me.

cinema5D: What’s your advice to directors on how to optimize their relationships with their DPs?

KA: I would say I’ve worked with a various level and style of directors. Some are incredibly
prepared and know exactly what they want, actually leaving little input for me. Then there’s the opposite where you feel all the weight is on your shoulders. Most I’ve worked with are some- where in between, where both of us bring ideas to the table and are willing to be challenged on why something should be shot a certain way. Having those discussions in prep, or even on set will make sure you’re always favoring the story, but still doing it in the most creative way you can.

Katelin discusses a shot with director Angel Manuel Soto.

cinema5D: How did you come to work on Charm City Kings?

KA: Angel, who I didn’t know before, told me that when he went into his initial meetings with the studio, they asked who he wanted to shoot it and he said me. They offered up some other more experienced DPs for him to consider but his gut always came back to me. We only skyped for about 20 minutes about how we wanted to approach the movie but I think it was an instant click for us. We were on the same page from the beginning. We had the absolute best time to- gether in Baltimore.

cinema5D: How did you feel about making a narrative retelling of an established documentary?

KA: This was an authentic portrayal of Baltimore, ending with a positive message. I really loved the doc, but I was very cautious about making a film about such amazing subject matter…this special bike life community that could easily become a Hollywood flashy interpretation of it. I had no desire to do that. After speaking to Angel and seeing his first feature, which was incredibly raw and powerful, I knew authenticity was his number one priority. That even came down to using almost all real  Baltimore riders in the film.

cinema5D: What influenced your choices in assembling the camera package?

KA: I’ve always been a fan of Panavision glass and had fallen in love with the Ultra and Super Speeds from previous short films. There’s different characteristics in each lens – even the few overly warm coated focal lengths in the set have their place and use. I also knew Panavi- sion would be able to customize and work with us on some specialty lenses. We added a few detuned Ultra Speeds to increase the bloom and flares for some of the riding at night – adding to the magic of being on a bike.

cinema5D:  Were there any special considerations regarding shooting the dirt-bikes? 

KA: Well—first and foremost, we needed to experience being on a bike hitting twelve. That was the first thing we wanted to do when we got into prep: experience a real ride, how people interact with the bikes and riders, feel how low-key or high energy the crowd really is, whether it’s a family type event, and so on. The Sunday Ride scene in the movie needed to be as real as possible.

We had Wheelie Wayne, basically the ringleader of all bike life in Baltimore, bring us to a few rides. The energy was insane. I was smiling the whole time—feeling the thrill that just comes from the sound of those bikes alone and watching these incredibly talented riders make it look effortless. I needed to feel it firsthand, so no one better to trust when hopping on the back of an ATV (doing a wheelie) than Wheelie Wayne. It was both the most invigorating and most terrifying thing I’ve ever felt.

Behind the scenes of Charm City Kings. Cinematographer Katelin Arizmendi pictured kneeling back center.

cinema5D: Did you and Angel watch any movies together beforehand?

KA:  When it came down to Angel and I pulling references and coming up with shot ideas, he really wanted the camera to move as much as possible for a good portion of the movie, referencing impressive oners from movies like Soy Cuba. We also watched A Prophet for the very naturalistic subjective camerawork. Angel made a huge list of films for me to watch, but when I admitted to him a few weeks into shooting that I only watched A Prophet and the rest of the nights I watched Sex in the City, he was so disappointed. But I only admitted that to him after I knew he was happy with my work on our film! I need my guilty-pleasure time you know! Ha. But truthfully, I like to have fresh ideas and fresh eyes. I don’t like overdoing the film references, or you get caught up trying to replicate someone else’s work.

cinema5D:  How about during principle photography?  What was your collaboration like?

KA:  Angel and I vibed from the very beginning: from being able to bounce ideas off each other all day at the office, to hanging out outside work constantly, getting tattoos together…He has an incredible knowledge of every department on set. He made me a better DP. I didn’t have a ton of experience with long choreographed oners, so many of those ideas started with him and I would add to them, favoring angles I thought would be more cinematic. I tried things like panning off Mouse when he goes down the stairs in his house and then turning the camera into his POV. You only hear him off screen, and then it pans back around to the front of him and leads him outside. I love disconnecting the visuals and audio, so I often brought ideas like that into our shot list.

Katelin Arizmendi and Angel Manuel Soto on the set of Charm City Kings

cinema5D: Any new tech or tools on this shoot?

KA: We used a giraffe crane where our steadicam operator, Stew Cantrell, had a long steadicam shot and in the end stepped onto the crane, rising up into a high angle. It would have worked amazingly, if we weren’t running out of light and only had 2 chances at it. The street lamps started to come on and at that point it wouldn’t cut with the rest of the day scene. I wasn’t available to do the reshoots, which included much more of the chase scene, so DP Shelly Johnson (ASC) shot them. In prep, we had discussed shooting some of that scene with a remote head attached to a motorcycle, but we didn’t end up doing it in principal photography. They did use that for the reshoots, and it looks incredible. The bike can get through the narrow overgrown alleys that a russian arm could never get through.

cinema5D:  What was the lighting strategy? Any location more challenging than others?

KA: If you’ve ever seen Baltimore at night, it’s incredibly cinematic with a perfect mix of sodium and mercury vapor. The “Highway to Nowhere,” where Mouse escapes on his bike toward the end was already lit like that, with the perfect color separation. In other locations, where I didn’t want the sodium vapor to be the only tone, I brought in other colors like greens, blues, or white light.

Many  of the interior scenes at Mouse’s house had to be lit cleverly, so the camera could roam through the space. My gaffer Russel Wicks would stick lite tile on the ceiling, tuck away litemats into the ceiling windows, and push our daylight from 18Ks through the front windows of the house. The more “general” lighting style was due to wanting to cover most scenes in one shot.

The bike shop where Meek works was a bit more difficult. We had so many scenes in there. I didn’t want to be stuck with one day and one night look, so we heavily relied on Scott Dugan, our production designer, to help us with practicals. We mixed neons, fluorescents above work benches, and supplemented quasar tubes in places that would look like flourescents but would be controllable. In general, we never wanted to stray away from the colors that would be in Baltimore and didn’t bring in any unmotivated colors to any scenes.

cinema5D:  Any new tech or tools on this shoot?

KA: We used a giraffe crane where our steadicam operator, Stew Cantrell, had a long steadicam shot and in the end stepped onto the crane, rising up into a high angle. It would have worked amazingly if we weren’t running out of light and only had 2 chances at it. The street lamps started to come on and at that point it wouldn’t cut with the rest of the day scene. I wasn’t available to do the reshoots which included much more of the chase scene so DP Shelly John- son ASC shot them. In prep we had discussed shooting some of that scene with a remote head attached to a motorcycle but we didn’t end up doing it in principal photography. They did use that for the reshoots and it looks incredible. The bike can get through the narrow overgrown al- leys that a russian arm could never get through.

cinema5D:  What about the script really made you want to work on it? 

KA: Of course, I was drawn in by the bikes:  the excitement and freedom one feels of doing something so dangerous, yet so liberating…and how we could evoke that same feeling through the camerawork. The bottom line is I was drawn to the coming of age story of this well-rounded character, who was portrayed in a 3-dimensional way, which is not always seen in stories like this.

Sony Classic Pictures is set to release Charm City Kings  on April 10th, 2020.  In the meantime, if you’d like to see the documentary the film is based on, you can stream 12 O’Clock Boys on Kanopy for free, if you have a valid library card or university ID.  It can also be rented on YouTube. You can read more interviews with Sundance filmmakers here

The post Sundance 2020: Spotlight on Katelin Arizmendi, DP of “Charm City Kings” appeared first on cinema5D.

Rotolight’s Titan X2 is Now Shipping

The Rotolight Titan X2, the brand’s first step into the cinema and rental houses world, is now shipping! This bright 2×1 LED panel with RGBWW technology features the SmartSoft technology that allows you to directly dial in the amount of diffusion you want on the fixture. Let’s take a closer look!

Rotolight Titan X2 – 2×1 Soft LED Light Panel. Source: Rotolight

Rotolight Titan X2 Features

If you are not familiar with the Titan X2, Rotolight’s latest flagship fixture, here is a quick summary of all the features of this 2×1 RGBWW LED panel:

  • It’s bright, with a light output of around 2300Lux at 3 meters with 50% diffusion, which is close to being twice as bright as an ARRI S60.
  • You can dim it from 0 to 100%, and it is flicker-free. It has a color temperature range of 2800K up to 10,000K. Also, the Titan X2 is an RGBWW panel, so it offers you the choice of over 16.7 million colors, all accessible across five lighting modes: CCT, HSI, RGBW, XY, and Filter mode.
  • CRI values are above 95, with a TLCI of 98.
  • The most incredible feature is the SmartSoft Technology that allows you to adjust the light’s diffusion, focus electronically, and spread.
  • You can control it with buttons and the built-in LCD, or via DMX wired and wireless, wirelessly via Bluetooth (for app control), with integrated LumenRadio compatibility, or via an RJ45 port. For photographers, it features an Elinchrom Skyport flash receiver.

You can take a look at the hands-on review we did during IBC 2019 below or check the article for more information.

Pricing and Availability

The Rotolight Titan X2 is shipping now. According to Rotolight, they received “incredible pre-order demand from leading rental houses, broadcasters, and cinematographers around the world.”

Prices range from $4699.00/€4230.00 for the Swan Neck version, all the way up to $4999.00/€4530.00 for the standard yoke or pole yoke versions. At this price point, it is not a light primarily made for owner-operators, but more for rental houses. But, I guess it will be a massive success due to the apparent quality and versatility of the Rotolight X2. We’ll try to fit it into our reviews schedule as soon as possible and take a closer look!

What do you think of the Rotolight X2? Do you think of renting one for your next production? Let us know in the comments below!

The post Rotolight’s Titan X2 is Now Shipping appeared first on cinema5D.

Core SWX V-Mount and Gold Mount Battery Plates for Sony FX9

Core SWX released V-mount and Gold mount (3-stud) battery plates for the Sony FX9. They provide steady 19.5V DC output with LED power indicator. Additionally, there are two D-taps on top and XLR input on the side. They mount directly on the FX9 body with two points of contact. The battery plates can be pre-ordered now for around $499 and they should start shipping in February.

Core SWX battery plates for Sony FX9. Image credit: cinema5D

In December 2019 I wrote about the new Core SWX battery plates for Sony FX9 full-frame cinema camera (my article can be found here). At the BSC Expo 2020 show in London, Nino met up with Ross from Core SWX to hear more about these new battery plates. What did we learn about them?

Core SWX Battery Plates for Sony FX9

The plates are all-aluminium CNC machined products. They come in both V-Mount and Gold Mount versions and are designed to seamlessly integrate with the camera. They leverage two points of contact with the camera, to provide a sturdy connection. There are two screws on top and a rail guide, which provides another point of contact and prevents any kind of torque.

Core SWX battery plates for Sony FX9. Image credit: cinema5D

The plates have two D-taps on the front and XLR input on the side. This XLR input can provide hot-swap function for the batteries.

LED Power Indicator

As Ross told us, the unique feature of the Core SWX battery plates, is the LED power indicator on the side. Sony FX9 requires a steady 19.5V voltage to run properly from a DC input connector. Core SWX has a boost converter in the battery plate to keep the 19.5V steady regardless of the level of the battery pack.

Core SWX battery plates for Sony FX9. Image credit: cinema5D

The LED indicator starts blinking red once the battery pack gets below 10% capacity (or below 13V if it is not a smart battery pack). That is a useful signal for the camera operator or assistant to change the battery pack so that the camera does not shut down in the middle of a take.

Price and Availability

Core SWX battery plates for the Sony FX9 are priced at $499. They can be pre-ordered now already. Ross told us they should be able to start shipping enough battery plates during February 2020.

What do you think about these battery plates from Core SWX? Do you use the Sony FX9 for your work or do you plan to invest in it? Let us know in the comments underneath the article.

The post Core SWX V-Mount and Gold Mount Battery Plates for Sony FX9 appeared first on cinema5D.

Sundance 2020: The Whole Fest in a Flash

The Sundance Film Festival has stood the test of time as one of the most vital exhibitions of boundary-breaking storytellers and their work.  To be in Park City for those 10 days is to experience artists from all walks supporting and celebrating one another, usually in the bitter cold of a Utah winter. If it was not in your schedule or budget to make it to Park City, fear not!  Below you’ll find the links to the daily recaps of the festival, which are played the day after the events they encapsulate, right before every public  showing of the films in competition.  Hopefully, you’ll get a little kick of inspiration from these brief glimpses into what it’s like to be at the Sundance Film Festival.  (Each recap is around 1 minute.)

Producer, Director, and Actor Radha Blank wins the Directing Award: U.S. Dramatic for The 40-Year-Old Version by Radha Blank at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival. | photo by Jemal Countess.

Day 1

Day one of the festival opened with a documentary that would take home the Audience Award for U.S. Docs 8 days later: Crip Camp. Among other opening day films was the documentary about Taylor Swift:  Lana Wilson’s Miss Americana, which you can already catch on Netflix.

Day 2

Boys State,  made by Sundance sophomores Jesse Moss and Amanda McBaine was the talk of Day 2.  This documentary won the most coveted prize for American non-fiction filmmakers: the U.S Grand Jury Prize for Documentary.  Ron Howard kicked off the Cinema Cafe panels for 2020.  You can catch that full conversation here.

Day 3

Nanette Burstein’s documentary Hillary premiered on day three. Secretary Clinton was at the premiere. You can catch this four-part docu-series on Hulu on March 6th. Also on day 3 – Lin Manuel Miranda and Kerry Washington headed up a “Power of Story Panel” that you can watch HERE.

Day 4

The first Sunday of the festival, Hillary Clinton dropped by to speak to an intimate crowd in the Filmmaker’s Lodge. Palm Springs debuted to rave reviews and landed a record breaking sale.  Max Barbakow’s romcom was picked up by Neon and Hulu for $17, 500,000.69 USD.

Day 5

Edson Oda’s first feature film Nine Days starring Winston Duke premiered on day 5. This visionary debut took home the Waldo Salt screenwriting award.

Day 6

It has long been a festival tradition that Wednesday is volunteer appreciation day. Volunteers wearing orange, like the ones you see in the recap below, help festival-goers get to the shuttles, scan tickets and just about anything else you can imagine to keep the festival running. There are over 2,000 volunteers every year in Park City to help out.

Day 7

In this second installment of “power of story“, the theme was the people speak. At the Egyptian Theatre, poet Staceyanne Chin, actress Sian Clifford, Ethan Hawk, Celisse Henderson, Viggo Mortensen, Ntare Mbaho Guma Mwine, and Meshell Ndegeo Cello with guitarist Christopher Bruce performed pieces inspired by the work of historian Howard Zinn.

Day 8

The University of Utah hosted a panel at filmmaker lodge on Destigmatize Mental Illness Through Storytelling Science and Philanthropy. There was also a panel on the new aesthetics of disability featuring sound artist Nick Ryan, who spoke about his work on the Reason I Jump.

Day 9

Day 9, also known as the 2nd Saturday of the festival, ended in a much anticipated award show which you can also watch below.

The Awards Show

Perhaps the most exciting announcement on February 1st, was the passing of the Festival director baton to Tabitha Jackson, who has served the Sundance Institute as the Director of the Documentary Film Program since 2013.  As John Cooper passed that baton, he said, “As my final festival as director comes to a close, it has been the honor of a lifetime to stand with these artists and to see their work meet audiences for the first time.”

The big winner of the night was Minaritaking home  both the U.S Grand Jury Prize and the U.S. Dramatic Audience Award. Edson Oda won the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award for his feature Nine Days. If you don’t feel like watching 2 hours of an award show, the full list of winners can be found here.

Day 10

Day 10 saw John Cooper’s last day presiding over the Sundance Film Festival, after an eleven year career as festival director the independent film community owes him a debt of gratitude.

Have you ever been to Sundance? What do you think about indie film festivals in general in times of the big streaming services seemingly taking over everything? Let us know in the comments below. 

The post Sundance 2020: The Whole Fest in a Flash appeared first on cinema5D.

Sigma Expected to Announce Unique New Full Frame Camera Later This Month

Sigma Expected to Announce Unique New Full Frame Camera Later This Month

Sigma has always made niche cameras with special sensors that were beloved by the devoted few who used them, but in the last year or so, they have started to venture into more mainstream territory. Now, the company seems set to release a rather unique camera that combines both their old and new philosophies.

[ Read More ]

Stunning Macro Footage of ‘Miniature Planets’ Made of Paint, Oil, Ink, and Soap

Using an 8K RED camera and two macro lenses, video artist Thomas Blanchard recently captured an entire solar system’s worth of “mini planets” made of paint, oil, ink and soap in excruciating detail. The resulting footage is absolutely stunning.

Admittedly, the word “stunning” is overused, but in this case it applies. The dreamlike video that Blanchard created in collaboration with Greenlight Films is just the latest in a series of colorful and experimental imagery that he’s captured in the past, but it’s probably the cleanest and most detailed piece of visual art we’ve seen from him yet.

To achieve this level of detail he shot the whole thing in 8K on a $25,000 RED Helium camera using a Canon 100mm f/2.8L Macro and a Canon MP-E 65mm f/2.8 1-5X Macro, and then edited the final product down to 4K resolution. The results speak for themselves. Watch the full video above, and then head over to Blanchard’s website to see some high-res stills from the production.

(via Laughing Squid)