|Fujinon HD Lenses Capture New 'Star Wars' Episode
March 11, 2005
Marin County, CA - When Lucasfilm Ltd.'s "Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith" comes to theaters on May 19, audiences will see the first "Star Wars" movie exclusively shot using Fujinon E Series digital cinema-style lenses, which brought new levels of efficiency and flexibility to filmmaker George Lucas and his crew.
The HAe3x5 (5-15 mm) and HAe10x10 (10-100mm) E Series zooms were used to capture Revenge of the Sith, the final installment of the "Star Wars" saga, along with E Series prime lenses (with nine fixed focal length lenses on the set) and C Series HAc13x4.5B-10 (4.5-59mm) lenses.
"Star Wars: Episode III" marked the first time Fujinon lenses were used on the entire production of the film - including principal live-action photography - which continues Lucas's groundbreaking work in the digital production of motion pictures.
Previously, Fujinon's "Cine Super C" series HA10x5B-10 (5-50 mm) zooms were used for the visual effects cinematography on 2002's "Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones," which was the first major live-action production shot entirely by digital methods. On "Attack of the Clones," Fujinon lenses were used for motion control, miniatures, green screen and pick-up shots.
The development of the HAe3x5 (5-15 mm) and HA310x10 (10-100mm) zooms used for production of "Revenge of the Sith" incorporated direct customer feedback, including reactions from Lucasfilm's engineers and producers.
"We needed significant focal length range and quality and the wide end of the zoom to bring George's vision to life for 'Revenge of the Sith,' and before these two lenses nothing was available to meet our needs," said the movie's producer, Rick McCallum. "The flexibility of the lenses was exactly what we needed, and the image quality on the wide end of the lenses is exceptional. We reduced lens changes by more than 50 percent, which made the production tremendously more efficient."
Burbank-based rental house Plus8digital worked closely with Lucasfilm and Industrial Light and Magic to provide exactly the right lenses for this high-profile shoot. Three Fujinon HAe3x5, three HAe10x10 zooms, and three sets of Fujinon's ESC control and metadata-capable system were rented to Lucasfilm for principal photography of "Revenge of the Sith." The ESC System, co-developed by Lucasfilm and Fujinon, includes an automatic backfocus function, digital rehearsal set marks, focus confirmation with depth-of-field display, lens metadata communications, a laptop/PDA interface, and compatibility with existing film-style accessories for production and postproduction efficient operations.
Automated black focus calibration adds to the time-saving features of the Fujinon lenses, increasing the speed of the often time-consuming focus-check process.
A Sony HDC-F950 HDCAM camera and Sony SRW-5000 4:4:4 HD recording system used on "Star Wars: Episode III" required superior quality lenses to capture the increased data rate accurately. The SRW-5000 captures the full detail of the Common Image Format 1920(H) x 1080(V) sampling structure in either the 4:4:4 RGB mode or the 4:2:2 component set without pre-filtering or sub-sampling. The HDC-F950 camera captures a full 1920(H) x 1080(V) sampled image and outputs uncompressed digital HD 4:4:4 RGB.
The HAe3x5 (5-15mm), HAe10x10 (10-100mm) zooms, HAe prime lenses, and HAc13x4.5 lenses (4.5 - 59mm) are especially designed for 2/3" CCD high-definition digital video cameras to provide precise, aberration-free images for a variety of applications. In addition to the large screen motion picture release market (including digital projection and film-print theater distribution), Fujinon's "Cine Series E" lenses are a natural choice for HD commercial, sitcom and episodic production and many other quality-dependent applications.
The new HAe3x5 is a 3X zoom ratio zoom lens that features 5-15mm focal lengths in a portable, compact design weighing 11 pounds. The HAe10x10 has a 10X zoom ratio that offers 10-100mm focal lengths and weighs 12 pounds. Both lenses employ large, 11-blade apertures that provide steady T1.8 performance throughout the zoom range. The new zoom lenses are scaled and color etched on both sides of the lens for easy reading of zoom, focus and iris settings. They are available with scales in feet or meters, and have 280 degree barrel rotation for accurate focusing.
Fujinon is a major manufacturer and distributor of optic assemblies and lenses for the broadcast television, digital cinema, and industrial markets. The company's lenses are used in virtually every segment of the broadcast industry, including electronic newsgathering, studio and field production, and high definition television.
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