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    #11
    Director of Photography
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    Aspect ratio and digital acquisition were changes independent from each other. We started "protecting" for 16:9 as far back as 2000 or so, if memory serves. The first show I can remember working on that actually started airing in 16:9 was ER, somewhere around 2005. The last season of ER in 2009 they made the switch from 35mm to RED. To help confuse things further, various blu-rays and streaming remasters have emerged in 16:9 of shows that never aired that way during their initial run. It has been amusing to note the sudden appearance of apple boxes and light stands on the edges of frames here and there, as the framing protection wasn't taken very seriously for a few years. We used to joke that a good job for the future would be doing digital cleanup on all of that junk when the 16:9 versions were being mastered...I shouldn't be all that surprised that there seems to have been little of that done. It is interesting to see shots that I remember specifically trying to cram three or four people across into a tight 4:3 composition now emerge in a widescreen version with all that extra room on the sides!

    I think as far as the transition from 35mm to digital in TV episodic, that is a little hard to pin down but I would put it around 2013, give or take.
    Charles Papert


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    #12
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    I got an "HD Ready" TV in the fall of 2002 but didn't purchase an HD tuner for it until the Superbowl'04. That was in HD but very little else was. Most scripted shows rolled over for 2005-06 season, IIRC. In fact, I got a 27" "improved SD/480p" set in 2006 since most shows were still in 4:3. The World Cup that year was in HD on ABC OTA but only in SD on Univision and ESPN.

    Of course, in 2006, a 37" flat panel no-brand 720p TV was ~ $1,500 too.


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    #13
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    Then there was Danny Boyle, and Anthony Tod Mantle, that used up to 8 XL1 cameras to capture 28 Days Later. That was a great movie!

    Here is the article from ASC

    http://www.theasc.com/magazine/july03/sub/


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    #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by CharlesPapert View Post
    Aspect ratio and digital acquisition were changes independent from each other. We started "protecting" for 16:9 as far back as 2000 or so, if memory serves. The first show I can remember working on that actually started airing in 16:9 was ER, somewhere around 2005. The last season of ER in 2009 they made the switch from 35mm to RED. To help confuse things further, various blu-rays and streaming remasters have emerged in 16:9 of shows that never aired that way during their initial run. It has been amusing to note the sudden appearance of apple boxes and light stands on the edges of frames here and there, as the framing protection wasn't taken very seriously for a few years. We used to joke that a good job for the future would be doing digital cleanup on all of that junk when the 16:9 versions were being mastered...I shouldn't be all that surprised that there seems to have been little of that done. It is interesting to see shots that I remember specifically trying to cram three or four people across into a tight 4:3 composition now emerge in a widescreen version with all that extra room on the sides!

    I think as far as the transition from 35mm to digital in TV episodic, that is a little hard to pin down but I would put it around 2013, give or take.
    I remember in ~2003 we had begun shooting Sports Century in HD. Even if you had been shooting on the original SD show, you had to be "vetted" to shoot on the HD shows. This was more or less a "crown jewel" series for ESPN at the time and they put a lot into it. They rented F900's and HD support gear packages and flew them all over the country for us. There was a strict list of specs we were to adhere to when shooting, including one I hated: "shoot 4:3, protect 16:9". But what was even worse than that, the shows that they spent LOTS of money on to shoot and master in HD(remember, HD was still a big deal back then), ONLY AIRED IN 16:9 HD ONCE. Every subsequent airing of each individual episode, after its premier, was in SD 4:3. To this day, I don't think I've ever seen any of the interviews I shot(I've seen some come out of the vault because of historical content with subjects that have passed-away) in 16:9 and HD, except for the premiers.
    Last edited by Run&Gun; 04-12-2017 at 10:12 PM.


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