(Wayne, New Jersey--February 4, 2008) Director of Photography Marty Mullin deployed a pair of Fujinon HD lenses for the independent short, “This Man’s Life.”
Mullin equipped his Panasonic (HD) Varicam with a selection of Fujinon lenses, including the HAe5X6 (E series Cine Zoom 6-30mm) and the HAc15X7.3 (C Series Zoom 7.3-110mm). Produced by Orlando-based Stars North; the film stars actors Michael Rooker and Bill Cobbs. It is currently in post production, being readied for the international film festival circuit.
”This Man’s Life” tells the story of a doctor who is traveling home by train to claim his inheritance after his father’s death. Most of the film takes place from within a moving train. The film’s writer, Todd Thompson who also produced and directed the film, chose a unique narrative approach. The story’s flashback sequences never leave the interior of the train car.
This method of storytelling presented many production challenges. A small dolly barely fit down the aisle. With principle actors and 65 extras, plus crew and equipment, Mullin had to shoot in very cramped spaces and had to climb over people and seats to get the angle he wanted.
But, according to Mullin, lighting the tiny train car presented the most difficult challenge: “There were so few options for light placement. The luggage rack was too open to hide the lights, the roof of the train was not an option because of tunnels, and there just wasn’t any extra room anywhere. Thankfully, the Fujinon lenses were fast. They transmitted more light, which allowed me to put up fewer lights. Even when I went to the telephoto end of the zoom, I didn’t have the ramping problem you sometimes have with other lenses.”
“This Man’s Life” is the third in a series of four short films produced by Smithy Sipes and Todd Thompson of Stars North. Their first two films “Time and Again” and “Once not Far from Home” were both shot on 35mm film with Panavision Cameras and lenses. Budget constraints prevented them from using that equipment on this shoot. Of particular concern was maintaining the quality for this production in spite of the different equipment. As the Stars North team continues its post production work, they say they’re pleased with results so far and would consider using the same equipment configuration for future productions.
“It looks pristine,” explained Sipes. “And because these Fujinon lenses held up to the other films shot on 35mm, we know we have the speed and convenience to shoot HD with lenses that make it look like 35mm. It’s really leveled the playing field for independents.”
Sipes fellow producer, Todd Thompson agreed: “From what I’ve seen you really can’t tell the difference between what was shot on 35mm versus the HD footage. To know that it can look that beautiful and be done on a relatively non-existent budget, opens up a whole new comfort level.”
DP Mullin said not only did the Fujinon Cine Style lenses provide beautiful images, they satisfied some major “must-have” elements on the set. ““I knew going into this film that the E series has some of the best HD lenses you can get and the C series is also superior,” he said, “but even I was taken aback by how beautiful the images were when I first looked through them while we were prepping. The lenses provided good barrel rotation, let me lay proper focus marks, and we saved time because we didn’t have to change primes.”
Fujinon is a major manufacturer and distributor of optics and lens assemblies for the broadcast, digital cinema, and industrial markets. The company's line of television zoom lenses are used in virtually every segment of the broadcast industry, including electronic newsgathering, studio and field production, and high definition television. For more information about Fujinon broadcast and communications products, call 973-633-5600 or visit our web site at http://www.fujinon.com
About Stars North™
Stars North™ is an independent movie production company based in Orlando, Florida. The company produces commercially appealing, quality films with memorable characters, engaging plots and redeeming messages. Stars North™ is committed to developing and producing projects in Florida that employ local cast and crew for worldwide distribution. For more information, contact Stars North™ at (407) 363-5269, or visit the company’s Web site: http://www.starsnorth.com