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Are Two Better Than One? Multiple Camera “Single Camera” Production. Peter Kiwitt. Topics. Why? How?. Historical Film Production. Productions carried two cameras One camera for production One camera as a spare Productions used two or more cameras for . . .

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Are Two Better Than One? Multiple Camera “Single Camera” Production

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Are Two Better Than One? Multiple Camera “Single Camera” Production

Peter Kiwitt


Topics

  • Why?

  • How?


Historical Film Production

  • Productions carried two cameras

    • One camera for production

    • One camera as a spare

  • Productions used two or more cameras for . . .

    • Stunts and “big” scenes (typically)

    • Saving time or performances (rarer)


Why Not Use Two Cameras?

  • Costs more money

  • Takes more time

  • Compromises eyelines

  • Compromises lighting


What Changed?

  • 1992 Lost in YonkersDigital editing


What Changed?

  • 1992 Lost in YonkersDigital editing

  • 1996 Kodak VisionFilm stock improvements


What Changed?

  • 1992 Lost in YonkersDigital editing

  • 1996 Kodak VisionFilm stock improvements

  • 1996 Average studio feature $60m


What Changed?

  • 1992 Lost in YonkersDigital editing

  • 1996 Kodak VisionFilm stock improvements

  • 1996 Average studio feature $60m

  • 1997 NBC “It’s new to you”Television ratings decline


What Changed?

  • 2000 Star Wars Episode II—Attack of the Clones Digital production


What Changed?

  • 2000 Star Wars Episode II—Attack of the Clones Digital production

  • 2000 O, Brother Where Art Thou?Digital color correction


What Changed?

  • 2000 Star Wars Episode II—Attack of the Clones Digital production

  • 2000 O, Brother Where Art Thou?Digital color correction

  • 2001 Practice!


Film Production Now

  • Movies & series:

    • Two cameras (or more!)

    • More coverage

  • Series:

    • Directing producers

    • Rotating DPs


What Hasn’t Changed

  • One shot on screen


What Hasn’t Changed

  • One shot on screen

  • Same visualization


What Hasn’t Changed

  • One shot on screen

  • Same visualization

  • Screenline & eyeline rules remain


Still Single Camera

  • Some wide angle shots


Still Single Camera

  • Some wide angle shots

  • Some moving shots


Still Single Camera

  • Some wide angle shots

  • Some moving shots

  • Shots separated by 90°+


Two Camera Issues

  • Lighting

  • Sound

  • Performance


Two Camera Guidelines

  • Lighting – closer angles

  • Sound – closer sizes

  • Performance – alternate takes


Two Camera Techniques

  • Closer size from closer angle

  • B camera for long lens

  • B camera pickup inserts

  • Two cameras on one dolly track or even dolly


Recommendation

  • All programs that teach directors should have at least one workshop or exercise in shooting with two cameras.


Are Two Better Than One? Multiple Camera “Single Camera” Production

Peter Kiwitt


Notes


Notable Productions

  • 1980 Hill Street Blues

  • 1981 MTV

  • 1984 Amadeus – cross-angles

  • 1988 Rain Man – cross-angles

  • 1989 Dead Poets Society – multiple coverage


Evolution of Style

  • Primitive (1893)

    • Tableau

  • Transitional (1908)

    • Tableau

    • Cut-in

    • Tableau

  • Classical (1917)

    • Master

    • Shot

    • Reverse-shot

  • Modern (1961)

    • Master

    • MS1

    • MS2

    • CU1

    • CU2

  • Contemporary (2001)

    • Master

    • MS1-A

    • MS2-A

    • CU1-B

    • CU2-B


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