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WEVA Members Shooting In Widescreen Super 8
February 23, 2006

Burbank, CA - Pro8mm of Burbank, California continues its’ 35 year tradition of pushing the tiny Super 8 frame to its maximum potential with its introduction of MAX-8, a 16 x 9 widescreen Super 8mm format.

The MAX-8 format begins with a widecreen modification to Pro8mm’s popular Classic 8 Professional Camera. The custom modification expands the frame size on the super 8 film master. The viewfinder on the camera has the 16 x 9 frame marked for better framing during production. This gives filmmakers the ability to work in a ratio which is more compatible with high definition & enhanced for eidescreen DVD mastering. The new expanded frame gives a 20% increase in usable picture when framing for HD.

MAX-8 is compatible with all existing Pro8mm & Super 8mm film stocks. The modification to the camera does not interfere with the ability to shoot a traditional 4 x 3 frame. In the MAX-8 format more of the film frame is being used as it passes through the camera gate. MAX-8 will use a frame that is 1.58 (a ratio of 1 high by 1.58 wide), whereas traditional Super 8 or Pro8mm film stocks use a frame of film that is 1.33 (a ratio of 1 high by 1.33 wide.)

MAX-8 must be transferred to a digital platform using a special telecine process modified for the MAX-8 frame. The Rank Cintel gate at Pro8mm has been custom modified so that the highest quality widescreen format transfer can be achieved. The transfer can be done to any digital format, including DigiBeta, Beta SP, DVCAM, Mini-DV, NTSC or PAL, matted or enhanced for widescreen.

The Classic Super 8’s resume is quickly growing, having recently been used in feature film work such as “The Lords of Dogtown”; commercials, including Truth in Advertisings “Welcome to Crazy World”, and LG Phones; television series such as Everybody Loves Raymond; movies of the week such as CBS’s Helter Skelter, and behind the scenes projects for Jennifer Lopez, Paris Hilton and Hilary Duff; countless music video’s, short subject and archival recreates.

The newest version of the Classic 8 camera with the MAX-8 modification is available in a sleek hammered steel powder coat finish. The discounted package price is $2995.00 and includes in-camera crystal sync modification, 8-64mm lens, 2400 mAh rechargeable battery pack and a waterproof carrying case. The camera is also available for rent, and the company offers special discounts for multi camera shoots and packages of film, processing and transfer.

Happy Day Video and Super 8's Margaret Blair

WEVA Videographer Margaret Blair of Happy Day Video and Super 8 specializes in combining Super 8 footage with broadcast quality 3-chip video to create a chaptered, edited DVD of a couples wedding day. A graduate from USC’s School of Cinema and Television, Margaret incorporates film to help tell an emotionally tentative story.

“My company, Happy Day Video and Super 8, primarily uses PRO8/17 200 ASA color negative and PRO 8/48 100ASA to capture the weddings we shoot," says Blair. "Capturing all of the dynamic events at a wedding require a fast style of documentary type shooting that these stocks deliver. They work great, providing a wide latitude for quickly changing and low light situations. PRO 8/45 Color Negative 50 ASA is my favorite stock with the super saturated color and its similarity in appearance to classic Kodachrome, although lighting situations rarely allow me to use that stock."

Somehow the old adage of something old, something new seems to apply equally well to wedding videos as it does to wedding attire. The idea of using film as a visual flavoring for modern wedding videos has been gaining in popularity. Maybe nostalgia is the driving force in this new twist or maybe Pro8mm is playing a major part by having available a huge repertoire of film stocks that offer greater latitude, and expanded ASA’s. This makes it possible for film to use available light in any indoor, outdoor or weather environment (full sun to cloud cover).

Super 8 film is an amazing tool for engaging people emotionally, allowing me to capture the real feelings and movement of their wedding day. As one bride told me when she saw her wedding: “Super 8 is the way you want a memory to look.” When I show others this bride’s wedding in the rain, they often confess to me that they cried through it and they don’t even know her. So, it is the inimitable visual quality that is unique to film that makes it look and feel a certain way. It gives brides a warm fuzzy-nostalgic feeling. While Using Super 8 for weddings is not something new, it is innovative for these times. It requires me to mesh old and new technologies as an artist, as well as a technician, to best capture the emotions of the day. I look forward to working with the new film stocks Pro 8mm is developing”.

Bliss Video Productions' Kristin

Another company making a niche for itself in the Wedding Market is Bliss Video Productions of San Francisco and Los Angeles, who says they want to convey a “different type of story telling that is more avant guard.” Kristin is the owner and artist behind Bliss Video Productions. Her passion for filming weddings began over six years ago when she began working for a Bay Area video company. Dismayed by the tasteless video effects and impersonal attitude she saw in larger companies, she relocated to Los Angeles with an unrelenting passion to start her own wedding video company. Kristen is a graduate of the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. One of Kristen’s artistic specialties is matching shots when the bride and groom have super 8 wedding footage of their parents. She created one such special vignette for a bride who got married in her mother's wedding gown. Kristen matched the 1964 footage of the bride’s parents in a scene by scene, side by side comparison.

For more information about MAX-8 go to:

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WEVA News is a service of the Wedding & Event Videographers Association International (WEVA). The world's largest trade association for professional wedding and event videographers, WEVA International is dedicated to advancing the professional interests of videographers worldwide through continuing education, technical support, group benefits, advocacy committees and professional development training. For more information regarding professional videography and WEVA International activities and membership, including Wedding & Event Video Expo 2006 (August 2006) contact the association office at 941-923-5334 or email: info@weva.com

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