Tuesday, March 9, 2010
_Last weekend I worked as a 1st A.C. on a pilot for an episodic called, The Room. We shot on the 5D with a few different cannon zoom lenses. The setups were relatively simple because the premise of the show is that each character is locked in a room while being recorded by a video camera behind a pane of glass. There is also one other "security" camera shooting each character in their respective rooms. The camera that was supposedly shooting through a pane of glass was obviously relatively simple because it was just locked off on sticks. The only time I really needed to pull focus was if a character leaned in close to the camera to draw attention to a certain line or to "examine" the camera.
The "security" camera setup was really a challenge to pull focus. The operator was snapping the zoom in and out randomly as I was whipping the focus in and out at the same time in order to create a mechanical feel. We didn't want the focus or the moves to look organic and smooth, we wanted them to seem as if they were machine operated, like a security camera would be in real life. It was a challenge to return to the right point of focus after purposely making the image soft on either side of the focal plane but I think the footage came out great. I hit my marks when I needed to and I did a pretty good job of adapting to random movements from actors on the fly.
I think The Room has a lot of potential and if it is cut right, it has a good chance at getting picked up. The crew was small but everyone really seemed to gel and things went relatively smooth on set. I hope we all get a chance to work with each other again in the future. Good times.