Comparison in Filmmaking

Film

When shooting moving pictures Film is a highly difficult task:

  • Film celluloid does not record audio and one needs a separate recording device. Focus is very complex and there is an additional person that operates that side of the camera.
  • Film needs to be developed and can’t be seen immediately unless it is also recorded on a digital device.
  • Lighting can be a lot more difficult than digital because film is highly sensitive.
  • Reels need to be changed often in a highly difficult process involving unloading and reloading in the dark, with out the use of visual sight!
  • Film material and the process of filmmaking is offensively expensive. It does not allow filmmakers to take a lot of takes and that creates more room for mistakes.
  • High Cost of raw material makes it harder to acquire the desired practice, hone it and penetrate the film industry.
  • Large crews are needed for a shoot.
  • Big studios have absolute control of what is filmed and what is not. That means they control the amount of films made, talents and the content.

Digital

Digital camera revolution made shooting pictures easier:

  • Audio is recorded on the same strip as the film, using multiple channels.
  • Digital Cameras are user friendly and viewing the materials is possible Immediately, after a shot is taken.
  • Materials are cheaper and allow plenty of takes. DV cassettes cost few dollars and allow at least 45 minutes of straight recording.
  • Reloading a tape is simple and no “blind” practice is needed.
  • Digital format is not as sensitive to light as film. Although it reduces some of the contrast and color range, it also reduces the amount of light needed.

These digital format advantages allowed a huge change in media. Documentaries are popping out in great numbers. All one needs is a $2,000, 3 chip camera and a desire to tell a story. The home computer may be a good enough solution to edit the film and compose the sound track.

The Internet is full of Websites introducing amateur work. These amateurs have the chance to make films in industry format and get discovered as talent.

Independent filmmakers are making feature films and do not need to answer to the big studios. Freedom of speech wins!

Even well known directors are shooting in high definition digital format. George Lucas made the first three ‘Star Wars’ digitally.