Question by Mario F: Independent Filmmaking using Canon HV20?
I’m into filmmaking and i’m looking to shoot my first independent movie next year. I was looking at different HD video cameras to use that could give me that same smooth picture quality that we see in the movies. But I figured out that that’s just not possible using video. At least not for now and with a low budget. So I came up with the Canon HV20, much less expensive that other HD cameras, so I was thinking in getting that one, attach a 35mm lens and adapter and shoot. Maybe I can get that picture look kind of Collateral or Miami Vice. They don’t have that smooth looking definition like other films, but it’s a unique style that characterize them. So, maybe I could get that same looking style on my movie using the HV20.
What you guys think? Sould I go ahead and do that?
Any real filmmaker that can give some advice?
Answer by shagsbd
The HV20 is a great camera, especially given it’s 24p capabilities. When combined with a high quality 35mm adapter, like a Letus Extreme (LEX), you can really get phenomenal results, all at a fairly decent price.
I use a Sony HVR-V1U for my work, along with the LEX, and I love the way my films end up looking. However, to get that type of ‘look’ that are in films such as those that Michael Mann does, it’s also imperative to know how to Colour Correct. If you don’t already have it, I highly recommend picking up the book ‘The DV Rebel’s Guide’ and checking out sites such as prolost dot com and creativecow dot net, as they are sources of immense knowledge and can greatly improve your workflow and understanding of all aspects of digital filmmaking.
Colour Correcting is such a huge part of getting your films to look the way you want them too, and getting good at it takes some serious practice, but will definitely pay off big in the end. On one of my films, a friend of mine commented that one of my actresses must have been wearing a black wig, but that it had to be a very expensive one as it looked so good. After I showed her the raw footage in which you could plainly see the girl had brown hair, she was shocked. Her silky brown hair was easily changed to lethal black locks through some very simple colour work.
In my Colour Correcting, I use Apple’s Color, Magic Bullet Colorista and Magic Bullet Looks to achieve the looks that I want, and I highly recommend these programs.
I hope this stuff helps, and good luck with your film!
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