Interesting opinion on digital cinema from director Alex Cox (Sid and Nancy)

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Guy Martin, May 31, 2002.

  1. Guy Martin

    Guy Martin Second Unit

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    Folks-
    Here's an interesting opinion on digital filmmaking from Alex Cox, director of Repo Man and Sid & Nancy. What's most interesting is that while he's anti-digital, unlike most other such crusaders (Ebert comes to mind) he's not a luddite. He actually took the time to experiment with the Sony/Panavision 24P camera before deciding to speak out against it. Worth a read (and with a slight warning about some foul language):
    http://film.guardian.co.uk/features/...723114,00.html
    Any thoughts?
    - Guy
     
  2. Ken_McAlinden

    Ken_McAlinden Producer
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    Cox makes some valid points, but I don't necessarily go along with the argument of "If cinema owners do get rid of 35mm, what becomes of all the 35mm prints? And what happens to the work of third-world, or independent, filmmakers who prefer film on economic or aesthetic grounds?" Film can be scanned to digital and distributed that way.

    His point about the global compatibility of 35mm film and the probable desire of studios to leverage the technology to restrict distribution is an interesting one, though. That's truly where the small scale and foreign language film producers could get the shaft.

    Regards,
     
  3. Luc D

    Luc D Second Unit

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  4. Andy_S

    Andy_S Second Unit

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    Here is an interesting quote from Spielberg from Wired Magazine:

    Now the thing I'm most saddened by is the constant talk about the photochemical process becoming a thing of Thomas Edison's past. There's a magic about chemistry and film. Sure, a digital shot is steady. It doesn't have to ride through the gate of a projector. And, sure, it's as clean as the OR in a major hospital. That's exactly what's wrong with it. Film has a molecular structure called grain; even a still of just a flower in a vase has life because of the grain, because of the molecules in the film. Especially if you sit in the first five rows of any movie theater, you know what I'm talking about. The screen is alive. The screen is always alive with chaos and excitement, and that will certainly be gone when we convert to a digital camera and a digital projector. I was one of the first people to use digital technology to enhance my films, but I'm going to be the last person to use digital technology to shoot my movies.
     
  5. Paul Jenkins

    Paul Jenkins Supporting Actor

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    I think the 'grain' that he speaks of is what makes movies seem "fake". HDTV at 1080p, for example, is like looking out a window, like you are really there. And it isn't the resolution of film. If you had 4320p or higher, the image quality would rival what your eyes can actually see/distinquish, and the sense of being there would be *too* close. Films must take you to another place, and when you have such startling realism that digital can provide, without 'grain', you lose that. I think that is what Spielberg is arguing about. Does that make sense?
     
  6. Ricardo C

    Ricardo C Producer

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    If film grain makes the screen "alive," I'd like a dead one, thank you anyway, Steven.
     

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