Spielberg's Aspect Ratios

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by TheoGB, Oct 14, 2001.

  1. TheoGB

    TheoGB Screenwriter

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    Just wondering. Does anyone know why Spielberg turned his back on 2.35:1? For a while now everything he's done appears to be in 1.85:1. Personally I much prefer 2.35:1 and don't see why he shouldn't use it. Or am I totally wrong and he still films in this ratio?
    Theo
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  2. Zack Scott

    Zack Scott Stunt Coordinator

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    simple...T.V. With 1.85:1 you don't lose as much of the picture than you do with 2.35:1. So J6P can watch Jurrasic Park in Full Frame and still see most of what the director intended on seeing without those annoying black bars on the top and bottom of the screen. [​IMG]
     
  3. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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    A lot of directors like open matte and Super-35 filming because of a lot of things...
    The main reason is that you can get a better picture and it's not as hard to focus.
    Believe me, if I had to shoot a movie, I would shoot in a non-anamorphic format (prefferably 2:10:1 70mm )
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  4. Rob Gillespie

    Rob Gillespie Producer

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    With JP he wanted to show the height of the dinosaurs in comparison to the people.
     
  5. Inspector Hammer!

    Inspector Hammer! Executive Producer

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    I believe I heard that he chooses to shoot in 1.85:1 these days because he feels that that ratio is closer in proportion to human sight.
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  6. Scott H

    Scott H Supporting Actor

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    quote: A lot of directors like open matte and Super-35 filming because of a lot of things...[/quote]
    Of course, open matte is no more properly attributed to Super35 than any other method of filming, and probably less so in practice than regular 35.
    quote: I believe I heard that he chooses to shoot in 1.85:1 these days because he feels that that ratio is closer in proportion to human sight.[/quote]
    Forum mythology. For aspect ratios to be relevant in analogies to human sight viewers must stare at the center of the screen at all times, taking in most of the action with their peripheral vision.
    Maybe he just prefers to compose for and tell stories with that AR for the projects he has done of late. And of course 2.40:1 is not better an AR than 1.33:1, just as paintings are typically not appreciated based on their dimensions.
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    [Edited last by Scott H on October 14, 2001 at 08:25 PM]
     
  7. TomRS4

    TomRS4 Stunt Coordinator

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  8. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Executive Producer

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  9. Scott H

    Scott H Supporting Actor

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    TomRS4, in thirteen years of professional theatrical and commercial film production, plus film school, I have never known a single person, including notable directors and cinematographers engaged in such discussions to state that any one aspect ratio is better than another. Fortunately I have known many, including myself, to definitely state that they believe a particular aspect ratio is better for a particular project than another. I have also never known anyone on this forum to post that any aspect ratio was better than another in seriousness, only that they have a preference for one over another. Hence my inclusion of the words "of course" in that statement. In teaching or discussion or application, I have and will state the same thing.
    This is an opinion, as you state, but I do think it's illogical to state that there are any AR's inherently superior to another. I can't figure how such a thing could be possible. You are the first person I have ever known to disagree with that, and so I completely disagree with your opinion [​IMG]
    I'm not sure what you mean to convey in regards to ARs on your TV. But I must point out that you erroneously identify the AR of a 16:9 display, it is 1.78:1. Thus, in consideration of typical overscan, it is expected that precisely framed 1.85:1 material will fill a 1.78:1 TV screen.
    Submitted respectfully.
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  10. Scott H

    Scott H Supporting Actor

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    TomRS4, I apologize if my above response was overwrought, but it was a somewhat significant moment to have someone make that comment [​IMG]
    Had you not called 1.33:1 the worst AR for movies, I would have thought we likely had an issue of semantics...
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    [Edited last by Scott H on October 14, 2001 at 10:41 PM]
     
  11. Peter Apruzzese

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  12. Matthew Chmiel

    Matthew Chmiel Cinematographer

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  13. Sam Davatchi

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    He is saving it for Indy 4 of course! [​IMG]
     
  14. TheoGB

    TheoGB Screenwriter

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    Jeez. That would be awful if Indy 4 was in 1.85:1. Well except it's almost certain to suck. [​IMG]
    Interesting about the reel-change marks. The fake one in Fight Club is oval from what I remember but that's a Super35 movie framed to 2.35:1. I guess they were going for maximum authenticity. [​IMG]
     
  15. Peter Apruzzese

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  16. Chad R

    Chad R Cinematographer

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    Spielberg chooses an aspect ratio in regard to the project. He has alternated between the two modern formats throughout his career, and I think each time it's been the correct choice.
     
  17. TomRS4

    TomRS4 Stunt Coordinator

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    Scott H,
    Before I go on let me say that I enjoyed your posts regarding my earlier posts, except for your pointing out my error in the AR of 16:9 TVs. I don't know what I was thinking. Don't I feel like an idiot.
     
  18. TheoGB

    TheoGB Screenwriter

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    I would agree that 4:3 is not a good ratio for anything. In fact the golden rectangle would be a better one which is closer to 5:3 as it is considered the most pleasing rectangular aspect. [​IMG]
    However, I definitely prefer wideness as it gives a greater scope for framing things for damatic purposes.
     
  19. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Executive Producer

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  20. Dan Brecher

    Dan Brecher Producer

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