Blackmagic Design announced today that Deadline Hollywood, the preeminent site for the most up to date breaking news stories in the entertainment industry, recently upgraded their video production unit to Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Cameras 4K for all of their entertainment video interviews and reporting.
With a major presence at every prominent film festival and event, the team behind Deadline’s production needed a more robust solution, and one that was equally portable.
“Because Deadline is primarily breaking news, many of the videos we do have to be turned around in only a few days, and sometimes even a few hours or minutes,” said David Janove, Video Producer for Deadline and parent company PMC. “We need equipment that will work in any environment regardless of lighting, and be able to set up as soon as possible.”
The unit travels across the world, with an active presence at festivals such as Sundance, Tribeca, Cannes, Toronto and SXSW. Older equipment simply couldn’t adapt to the ever changing conditions. Between poor lighting, constant travel and fast turnarounds, the team found the Pocket Cinema Camera 4K a refreshing change.
“Our previous equipment wasn’t doing the trick in low lighting environments,” said Janove. “The dynamic range of the new cameras provided a more professional look, with greater range when color correcting and grading. Having a portable unit like the Pocket 4K makes going through security a breeze. We never lose equipment now because we’re able to carry everything on!”
And when the shoot is done, the smaller package helps them move to the next event quickly. “Sometimes we cover events like red carpets and junkets with other film crews. The portability of the Pocket 4K means that, after the event, while they’re still breaking down their external monitors, we’re already in the parking lot.”
An added bonus has been the 5 inch touch screen on the back of the camera. “That kind of screen is unheard of in cameras this size,” said Janove. “And while it helps provide a large monitor solution, aiding in easier focus, the screen comes with its own challenges, mostly from those in the room watching over the camera operators’ shoulders.”
While the flexibility and size of the system is a key ingredient to the team’s productivity, the quality of the image was equally important, particularly at major events such as Sundance, where they produce more than 80 videos in 4 days, and interview top professionals from around the world. “We’ve had everyone from Twin Peaks cinematographer Peter Deming to director Luca Guadagnino (Suspiria) ask about the equipment we use,” said Janove. “Image quality is important to them as well, and they seem intrigued such a small camera can create such a great picture.”