30th March, 2009

The Day Of The Triffids shoots with F35

The BBC is currently filming a new adaptation of the 1950s science-fiction classic, The Day of the Triffids. The two-part drama is shooting with the new F35 digital cinema camera, which provides a 35mm digital image, giving the drama a fantastic filmic quality. Leading camera hire company Take 2 Films has supplied the production with the F35.


The Day of the Triffids is a co-production between production company Power and Canadian producer Prodigy Pictures for BBC One. Due for transmission later this year, the drama is based on John Wyndham's best-selling post-apocalyptic novel, The Day of the Triffids, published in 1951. The production stars Dougray Scott, Joely Richardson, Brian Cox, Vanessa Redgrave, Eddie Izzard and Jason Priestley. The writer is Patrick Harbinson (ER, Law & Order).


In the not too distant future, man's search for an alternative fuel supply leads him to uncover the ominous Triffid, a crop now cultivated for its fuel that seems to have a life of its own. But when spectators gather worldwide for a much anticipated solar storm, billions are left blinded and the few sighted survivors watch as society collapses into chaos. The Triffids, meanwhile, find their way out of captivity. Free to roam the planet with a fatal sting, and a retributive taste for human flesh, the Triffids begin rapid breeding.


Justin Bodle, executive producer, Power, says: “We are enormously excited to have secured this stellar cast for The Day of the Triffids. Together with its amazing effects and iconic locations, it will deliver the drama mini-series event of 2009.”


Alex Golding is digital technician on The Day of the Triffids. He says one of the key advantages of the camera is the ability to use Look-Up Tables (LUTs) on the camera. A standard monitor cannot replicate the wide range of colours and tones recorded, so it is often useful to apply a LUT to the output for monitoring. LUTs are becoming more commonly used and integrated into the whole post production process. They are effectively a set of colour values which can be applied to an image purely for monitoring, leaving a clean image for grading.


“Using our monitor on set, we can apply the LUTs created by post production and Ben (Smithard) for on set monitoring, it’s a great tool for visualisation,” says Golding. “No on set monitoring is completely accurate, but the added look to the S-Log picture assists everyone to visualise the end result.”


Once the day’s shooting has been completed, the HDCAM SR master tape arrives at On Sight’s HD LAB. “We receive dailies from production as HDCAM SR 4:4:4 log recordings accompanied with the audio as WAV files,” comments Tony Maher, facility manager at On Sight. “A dub is made from the HDCAM SR tapes to Digibeta and we apply the LUT to correct the log curve. Finally, we sync the audio and insert to the Digibeta for the offline and make DVDs for the executives to watch.”


Taken from the Sony Biz website