Question regarding filmed ARs of NYPD BLUE, SIMPSONS, ect. Please Help...

Discussion in 'TV Shows' started by Robert Floto, Mar 18, 2004.

  1. Robert Floto

    Robert Floto Supporting Actor

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    I have a question regarding what aspect ratio certain television programs are shot in...

    I recently got a 16x9 monitor, but the Dish converter with an HD digital recorder is currently out of my price range. Therefore I currently watch "letterboxed" programs like E.R., STARGATE: SG-1, and STAR TREK: ENTERPRISE in the zoom mode to fill the width of my screen.

    I know that some of the other programs I watch are available in HD-Widescreen if I received an HD signal. Since I don't get that signal yet, I'm wondering if programs like NYPD BLUE, THE SIMPSONS, and MALCOM IN THE MIDDLE are cropped for standard broadcast, or if they are shown on regular television in a sort of "open matte" style format? Does anyone know how they are shot? On standard broadcasts is the top and bottom of the frame a "safe area" that I can safely zoom without destroying the composition?

    Any clarification would be greatly appreciated... Thanks!
     
  2. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    The only shows that you can ‘zoom’ without losing content are ones that you have mentioned that are shown in letterbox format. The West Wing and [/i]The Sopranos[/i] are two more examples of 16:9 shows that are packaged in SD telecasts in a letterbox format and which you can zoom and get a picture that is (pretty much) the same as the same telecast in HD.

    Although NYPD Blue (and most other HD shows) is cropped to a 4:3 frame, the cropping is done for the most part (and sometimes all) on the sides of the picture (sort of P&S applied to TV shows). If you now zoom the picture you will lose some of the top and bottom of the picture and not gain any of the cropped portion (as it does not exist in the signal). I don’t feel that there is any ‘safe’ area that can be eliminated, but you may feel differently.

    The Simpsons is a 4:3 format show, as are all of the Fox animated shows.
     
  3. Robert Floto

    Robert Floto Supporting Actor

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    Thanks, Lew! I was afraid that zooming might not be right for those programs. I was hoping the HD broadcast was just the top of the frame being matted, but I'm not going to participate in still MORE CROPPING. Oh, well...

    Incidentally, I could have sworn that at the beginning of The Simpsons there was a statement that said available in HD-Widescreen where available...or something like that... Am I wrong?
     
  4. Ike

    Ike Screenwriter

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    Sort of. They just have that D)))) logo, which I'm not sure what that stands for, since Lew is right: The Simpsons is 4x3.
     

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