Last updateSat, 25 May 2019 4pm


Introducing – Tools for Cinema Quality Assurance


Cinema Test Tools for the Non-Technical Manager 

Cinema Test Tools is a free resource for the cinema industry, tuned most particularly for the non-technical manager. The tools include several DCPs, all with interesting means of testing the sound and picture quality for the interested by lightly trained staff. The lessons on sound and light are written to provide a foundation to communicate with the technician who must respond quickly and well to the information that they discover.

The key is a free Online Managers Online Walk Through Checklist that correlates with the many DCPs. It helps bring an understanding of the many nuances of the auditorium's situation in a straightforward way. 

Lens Tangents | DCinema Acquisition

Capture – with lens or microphone, perhaps moving electrons around with a stylus, or perhaps conversion from an analogue form. Regardless, the beginning is acquisition.

RED Studios Hollywood Announced

RED Studios Hollywood LogoIn a surprise move, RED announced that they have purchased the property formally known as Ren-Mar Studios (Website History Page) and have (will?) renamed it as RED Studios Hollywood.

Jim Jannard says, "There are 5 stages at RED Studios Hollywood. RED will take one for demos, etc. and the others will remain as working stages for various productions." And to the question of, "Why RED Studios Hollywood. Why not just RED Studios. Are you suggestiong more acquisitions in the future?" he answers, "So as not to confuse with RED Ranch in Las Vegas."

The RED Ranch in Las Vegas was announced last year. Current news is that the site has yet to be built upon, but that doens't mean that work isn't being done on the design and permitting side.

Meanwhile, the famous lot that was at one time the DesiLu Studios at 846 N Cahuenga Blvd, and which has long been used for everything from movies to TV shows to music videos and band rehearsals, appears to be on its way to being a showcase for the new line of RED cameras, while generating income as a normal lot.

The Lake Forrest facility that now manufactures and repairs the RED cameras will also remain open.

Here is a link to the property map

7 classic Improvs

This had to be placed somewhere, so that it didn't get lost in the internet:

The Top Seven Classic Movie Moments You Didn't Know Were Improv

Separating Worlds through Color - StudentFilmmakers Magazine

David Zanit writes a nice piece in StudentFilmmakers Magazine which brings out points that one doesn't think of until they need to be handled.

"...I wanted the shot to start calm, and then, with no warning turn chaotic. The point was to illustrate how our characters had to live in a constant state of unease never knowing when the next attack would be. I suggested we try to cover the scene in one moving take. The shot started handheld high up on a crane looking down into the camp. After a moment, the explosions started. As the explosions moved through the camp, the crane lowered, and the camera stepped off the crane and moved quickly forward through the camp.

To achieve this, the grip department had to get a special “walk around” platform for our crane. I stood on the platform wearing a safety harness that was attached to the crane. Another grip went up in the crane with me to help safety me and help with the camera before we started rolling. When the crane lowered to the ground, several grips had to step onto the crane to make up for the lost counterweight when I stepped off (to make sure the crane arm did not shoot back up into the air). They also had to unfasten me from the crane. All of this had to happen very fast; it was absolutely crucial that I did not step off early.

Standing on the crane with a mask to protect me from the dust.

Once off the crane, I still had to run forward into the camp with our very skilled pyro technicians making sure I was always safe from the explosions. My team did a great job pulling off this very difficult shot.

Read the entire piece at:
Lighting Period War Film, Shades of Hope | 
Separating Worlds through Color


Transition Rounding Errors

Times of transition bring out the iconoclasts and entrenched white papers and no end of forum discussions. In his latest Digital Content Producer article, D.W. Leitner cuts through the arguments with a paraphrase from James Carville: It’s the audience, stupid. He's going to Park City with the partner he brought to production, long GOP MPEG2, and he's sticking to his decision.

He makes an end-around to discussions that started years ago and are still going on in the forums; compression, long gop, is/is not 'good enough'. And why not? As he points out, A) He did the tests at the time, with the technology available, and B) the technology has gotten him the product he needed at the budget he had in a manner he considered painless compared to a previous headache project. In the process he mentions that the technology performed without dropouts during the recording phase, a comment that is mirrored in technical papers (albeit a Sony Broadcast document), as well as many forum comments - the post production phase also is easier and has fewer dropouts while handling more data than H.264 variations.

So, who is to knock it? Use what works.

Except – that we are in a transition that has moved startling fast – 1080i was defensible until 1080p showed up in every home for less than a 1,000 moneyunits, as well as multi-processor computers and the NLE software to support them. The testing has to keep repeating as each technology ripens. For example, Phillip Bloom makes an astounding presentation which doesn't once attempt defense, instead showing all the same ideals of cost and quality for camera technology that wouldn't have been discussed by movie pros 3 years ago (and then, only to disqualify.)

The good news is that the horrors of the unresolvable video delivery and presentation format wars didn't allow a merely ‘good enough’ standard to inhibit innovation the way that 16-bit audio became.


The technology of acquisition explained; from cameras and lenses, to memory and local storage, from storyboarding and CGI...place or read it here.

Storage. It wasn't that long ago that trying to get a 9 Gig RAID working on a sophisticated LAN was monumental, if not impossible. 9 years perhaps?

Now, terabyte drives are here. Enough to go with holographic storage soon?

There is a thrust for acquisition to take on some of the aspects of post. We are way to conservative for something fancy like that. But, we'll let you modern people talk about it.

Camera, but virtual. 

Film has higher resolution, no matter what that means. It is important.

We are hoping that we won't be talking much about how many electrons in the full well capacity, but we might...never know. There is just so much new coming out, that cameras and their accessories need a whole category by themselves...and here it is.