Thread: Why don't we see BlackMagic cameras used in big festivals?

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  1. #21  
    I heard so many DP's I respect say that Blackmagic has a reliability issue. From there it appears they just don't want to take the risk. Many of these people own Red in their personal kit and shoot Alexa when production is funding the project. I don't think they lose a lot of sleep thinking about it. They keep their attention on the work.

    This reminds me a lot of the Rolling Stone Magazine's brilliant 'Perception/Reality' Print Campaign from about thirty years back. https://www.google.com/search?q=roll...w=1691&bih=925

    When I've showed them the menu from my Pocket camera they're blown away. So much of this is a foundational question of brand. It takes time for opinions to change.
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  2. #22  
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    Blackmagic menus have and always will be a thing of beauty.

    Since day 1 even with 3-4 simple pages.
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  3. #23  
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    Quote Originally Posted by stip View Post
    Blackmagic Design is a relatively new dog in the cinema camera niche, and the movie industry - and that includes the indie movie industry - likes to hang on to established brands and workflows. All that it needs for BMD to pop up more and more in film festivals is time.
    I do concur that for BMD to succeed with their brand and following, they need to pop up more and more in film festivals and the time is now. They need to have an aggressive marketing campaign because it doesn't matter whether they have the best color science or comes second to Arri. If people does not perceive that, they'll be always at the bottom of the ladder, if at all. Their success will be our success too, because if it becomes a legit brand clients and the indie movie industry looks for, you'll hear more Blackmagic being used.
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  4. #24  
    Senior Member jambredz's Avatar
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    I've always wondered why BMD dont give their cams to well known DP's to do promo stuff like Canon do. John Brawley alone can't fly the BMD banner. Plus people will perceive him to be biased based on this relationship with BMD( don't think he is but I know that's a perception).
    Darren Scott
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  5. #25  
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Brawley View Post
    You sound like someone that doesn't or hasn't owned a UMP ?

    "Not even close" sounds like you think the camera is a long long way...It's not at all.

    When day play crew on my unit ask me what a UMP is like I like to say it's 90% of an Alexa for 10% of the price.

    But it's more complicated than that. I actually think the image is much closer than 90%, but if you want I can post a bunch of shots from my shows and we'll see if you can pick which are Alexa and which are UMP. So far no one has done it when I challenge people in this way when I read these kinds of general comments.

    The show I'm on right now is more than 30% UMP in the edit.

    But thing is, I use the UMP to get shots I can't get with an Alexa. I use a lot of different cameras and have always done so. Alexa is the preferred choice on this show because of FEATURES it has, but l know I can get very close to an Alexa look with the work I do using a UMP to get a style of shooting I can't do with an Alexa. Many many scenes are ALL UMP.

    JB
    Quote Originally Posted by Marshall Harrington View Post
    I heard so many DP's I respect say that Blackmagic has a reliability issue. From there it appears they just don't want to take the risk.
    Yup.

    It's much more than just the image. Yes the image coming out of the UMP is, with work, matchable to Alexa or any other flagship camera, especially in a studio setting..and it's absolutely gorgeous..but that's not the point. Reliability, flexibility, interface..these are all things severely holding back the UMP from being a serious contender against cameras used by studios and even indie filmmakers, who want to avoid potential hurdles as much as anyone else regardless of the budget. Blackmagic cameras are great, especially for owner-operators not interested in renting out their gear; but when you have millions of dollars on the line, you really don't want to have to work around a camera, when a camera can work around the production.

    I have only ever seen blackmagic cameras used on a union set twice. One was a pocket attached to a boom pole getting crowd shots in a concert scene, the other was a UM4.6 as C cam on an extremely low budget youtube spinoff of a bigger show. A and B were Dragons.
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  6. #26  
    Senior Member jambredz's Avatar
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    While I cannot speak for anyone but me...my UMP has been pretty reliable since I got it last year June. And it's been in alot of different situations with Jamaican tropical heat and has been in pretty dusty conditions and never missed a beat. However Im quite aware of the many people who have had to go through multiple cams to get a good one. I had to go through 3 BMCC back in the day to get a good one. So far my Pocket 4k is also doing great also (knock on wood).
    Darren Scott
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  7. #27  
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    UMP gets used more often than you'd expect. When which cameras used gets reported as part of a Festival write-up on gear used, it's frequently about Sundance in particular. Sundance films are not really independent in the same way films that go to SxSW or other regular festivals are.

    Vimeo hosts tons of the very best films that go to Festivals and there's always good films shot on UMP there. Here's one that stands out as particularly impressive to me: https://vimeo.com/234498586

    An Alexa gets chosen more often than not because it's made for crews and can survive a nuclear apocalypse. Image wise, there's not a huge benefit if any at all to shooting Alexa over a UMP or other cameras for that matter, it's literally down to taste and sometimes there's a certain feature which can benefit a production, low light / super high resolution or whatever. In a general sense though, it's getting laughably hard to justify one camera over another because of image alone. They all look so good now, it's a down to what features you need in what form factor. I'm an Alexa / UMP owner among other cameras and the only thing I care about now is if it'll play nice for whatever I'm shooting.

    Hearsay is a powerful thing and most people just run with it as if it was their own experience. Nearly every damn time I hear someone describe why they don't want to shoot on the URSA they haven't actually experienced ANY of the issues they're talking about, it's just this convoluted mish mash of things they've read and heard and they can't help but repeat it as their own opinion.
    Test footage Vimeo page: https://vimeo.com/romanalaivi
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  8. #28  
    Senior Member DPStewart's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roman View Post
    UMP gets used more often than you'd expect. When which cameras used gets reported as part of a Festival write-up on gear used, it's frequently about Sundance in particular. Sundance films are not really independent in the same way films that go to SxSW or other regular festivals are.

    Vimeo hosts tons of the very best films that go to Festivals and there's always good films shot on UMP there. Here's one that stands out as particularly impressive to me: https://vimeo.com/234498586

    An Alexa gets chosen more often than not because it's made for crews and can survive a nuclear apocalypse. Image wise, there's not a huge benefit if any at all to shooting Alexa over a UMP or other cameras for that matter, it's literally down to taste and sometimes there's a certain feature which can benefit a production, low light / super high resolution or whatever. In a general sense though, it's getting laughably hard to justify one camera over another because of image alone. They all look so good now, it's a down to what features you need in what form factor. I'm an Alexa / UMP owner among other cameras and the only thing I care about now is if it'll play nice for whatever I'm shooting.

    Hearsay is a powerful thing and most people just run with it as if it was their own experience. Nearly every damn time I hear someone describe why they don't want to shoot on the URSA they haven't actually experienced ANY of the issues they're talking about, it's just this convoluted mish mash of things they've read and heard and they can't help but repeat it as their own opinion.
    You've summed it all up very well here, Roman.

    And the 7-minute short film you've linked is SUPERB! One of the best I've seen.
    Thanks for that.
    Cameras: Blackmagic Cinema Camera, Blackmagic Pocket Camera (x2), Panasonic GH2 (x2), Sony RX100 ii, Canon 6D, Canon T2i,
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  9. #29  
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    As an owner of multiple BMD cameras who uses it to shoot indie narratives, I am very interested in seeking it touted as one of the premier cameras for any size budget. I just get so tired explaining why it is just as good as a RED dragon, a C200, or a Sony FS7. Arri may be a league above all else and I can deal with that. But until such time, I end up just having to rent a RED, a Canon, a Sony, and a couple of times an Arri from ShareGrid or other rental house. The budget could afford it and the director or producer would rather we use something else other than the BMD cameras that I own and does not even have added cost. I do like the BMD a lot, but to just spend money on a BMD camera that does not have a return on investment, or just for personal play, I always have to ask myself now why not just get the Pocket 4K and ditch the UMP or anything that cost more than a couple of grand? Just rent a Canon, Sony, or RED for the weekend shoots.
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  10. #30  
    The Mini Pro is a great camera. Very reliable, great picture. Had Dragons, Mini Pro sleighed them. End of story.
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