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Film Halation (2 replies and 2 comments)

Ryan Jackson
2 months ago
Ryan Jackson 2 months ago

Hi Roger,

Not sure if this has been asked before but I'm interested to know what your thoughts are on the red halation you get around highlights when shooting on negative film. Do you consider it an 'imperfection' of film or simply another aspect of the 'look' that film can give you alongside things like grain? Is it something you miss when shooting digitally or is it something that you are glad to not have to worry about anymore? Thanks

Roger Deakins
2 months ago
Roger Deakins 2 months ago

That is an interesting question. Sometimes I miss those film effects like halation while at other times I am glad that a highlight is clean. I sometimes feel the lack of grain but that usually passes! Digital capture is its own thing and has its good and bad. Just as with film capture, you don't get the good without the bad.

Ryan Jackson
2 months ago

Thank you for your insight Roger

Mitchell P
2 months ago
Mitchell P 2 months ago

Steve Yedlin has a process for creating halation for digital footage. It's quite visible in Knives Out when the characters have a bright light source behind them. It's done so well that it looks like real film halation, even though the movie was shot on an Alexa. 

Ryan Jackson
2 months ago

I have seen the display prep demo he did on his website and it is quite amazing how indistinguishable he makes digital look from film

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