(Fremont, CA--March 7, 2017) Blackmagic Design today announced that Amazon Prime's original 4K documentary, PRIME JAPAN, was shot with Blackmagic URSA Mini 4.6K. PRIME JAPAN is a documentary about Japan. It picks up a variety of topics regarding Japan from traditional culture such as sushi, sake and Japanese swords to more modern culture which represents today's Japan such as design, fashion and modern architecture.
The series takes great effort to capture the beauty of Japan with high quality 4K images, and one of its episodes, "WAGASHI (Japanese Sweets)," was shot entirely with URSA Mini 4.6K.
"This documentary is streamed via Amazon Prime, so we wanted to make a show which non Japanese people can also enjoy. The style of Japanese documentary is usually a director shoots with a compact camera for long hours and then picks up the best parts from enormous amount of footage. Of course, some documentaries from abroad could be created with the same style. However, I see a lot of documentaries from abroad which have both a great look and a strong message," said Takashi Chiba, DoP from Helmet Inc.
The documentary shot both on location and in the studio. For the production, Chiba brought Zeiss classic series for his URSA Mini 4.6K on set and switched lenses depends on what he tried to shoot. For studio shoots, he used Zeiss compact primes to shoot close up shots of Japanese sweets.
The piece was shot in 4K, so being able to capture 4K image was one of the first priorities to choose the camera. Chiba explained why he finally chose the URSA Mini 4.6K: "We traveled many places all over Japan to introduce Japanese sweets. The URSA Mini is great in mobility so it is perfect for this kind of shoot. It's lightweight and easy to use, and having an EF mount camera means I can move my camera very easily."
Also, the theme of this documentary is Japanese sweets, so it was very important to show them looking appetizing.
"People can be visually more sensitive to what they put in their mouth. We tried to keep the footage looking natural, rather than over graded to keep the sweets looking delicious. So we took advantage of the natural tone from the URSA Mini. The color of Japanese sweets is usually pale and less saturated, and the camera pulled the delicacy of the sweets well."
Chiba continued: "If you use some cameras which cannot capture high quality image, you have to rely on grading heavily to make the footage look decent. On the other hand, this camera does not need to cheat with grading."
Also, this episode contains many high speed shots, such as a scene which shows a confectioner making the sweets rhythmically with classical music in the background. "By showing such action with high speed shooting, we could give a more appetizing feeling as well as cinematic look."
"I used the URSA Mini for both on location and in the studio. This is truly multi purpose camera which works great in both places," Chiba concluded.
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Design Blackmagic Design creates the world's highest quality video editing products, digital film cameras, color correctors, video converters, video monitoring, routers, live production switchers, disk recorders, waveform monitors and real time film scanners for the feature film, post production and television broadcast industries. Blackmagic Design's DeckLink capture cards launched a revolution in quality and affordability in post production, while the company's Emmy award winning DaVinci color correction products have dominated the television and film industry since 1984. Blackmagic Design continues ground breaking innovations including 6G-SDI and 12G-SDI products and stereoscopic 3D and Ultra HD workflows. Founded by world leading post production editors and engineers, Blackmagic Design has offices in the USA, UK, Japan, Singapore and Australia. For more information, please go to www.blackmagicdesign.com.