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First 5D features emerge

21 July 2010
First 5D features emerge

Low budget British indie Love/Loss is among the first features to be entirely shot using a Digital SLR, writes Adrian Pennington, and has discovered that the camera can be tricky to use.

Love/Loss produced by Gadabout Productions is a drama starring BAFTA-winning actors Virginia McKenna and Keith Michell about a chance meeting that reunites childhood sweethearts sixty years on. Shot entirely on the Canon EOS 5D MkII by DoP Mark Moreve (pictured) and producer/director Guy Daniels, material was recorded to 4GB Compact Flash (CF) cards that each provided 13 minutes of 4:2:0 8bit H.264 video. The files were transcoded into ProRes and edited on Final Cut Pro by former Mill vfx artist Simon Holden. A grade was performed by Mick Vincent at The Mill.

“We wanted to be at the vanguard of change rather than following the crowd,” explained Daniels. “Yes there was a risk that the camera might not deliver what it promised but we did some tests and ultimately decided that there was merit in trying to prove that this technology can be used on a 90 minute feature.”

Moreve said: “There’s a perception that the camera is easy to use but it’s actually very difficult. Although there’s 9-10 stops of latitude the detail is not there especially in the blacks so you very quickly get to the limit of how much you can grade with. It has beautiful, stylistic depth of field and the format inspires me but you need to get exposure spot on.” 

Love/Loss has been submitted to the Raindance and New York International film festivals and is also seeking TV distribution.

US indie film, And They’re Off meanwhile has also just wrapped shooting on the Canon 5D and 7D. Shot by Ulf Soderqvist and directed by Rob Schiller, its acquisition was enhanced by the use of Light Illusion designed Gamma Curves.

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