Alternative film and video cameras with big sensors may not be anything new. But at every twist and turn of this evolving category, some new product tempts us with its fantastical sensory promise and too-good-to-be-true price. Like the beguiling little bottle labeled “Drink Me” in Alice in Wonderland— Kool-Aid jokes aside—they demand to be used. So have you tried one of the latest DSLR cameras yet? Ever since the first video tests and short films shot with these cameras became public last year, cameras like the Canon EOS 5D Mark II have emerged not just as alternative options but as the focal points in many budget-conscious filmmakers’ kits. And who isn’t budget conscious these days? There’s certainly been an uptick in content produced with DSLR cameras, which we’ve seen first-hand at our own Dailyfilm.tv
and in independent features, music videos, industrials, show opens and segments of TV shows. Contributor Jem Schofield has spent the past several months shooting with the Canon 5DMKII and sampling the other models and has formed some very definite opinions about what DSLRs can and can’t bring to your next project (amazing images, terrible audio and no timecode, for example). In this issue, he compares models from Canon, Nikon and Panasonic. He’s also put together an amazing hit list of support gear, with direct links to his favorite stuff, should you decide to chug-a-lug from that DSLR bottle and build out a kit worthy of any camcorder or film camera.
Speaking of big-sensor shooting for an alternative concept: have your heard about the upcoming Bannen’s Way
, which will premiere in January on Crackle.com, Sony’s next-gen video entertainment network? This Web-only, film-style series was shot on the RED ONE as a feature but was designed to be cut into 14 distinct episodes. In our next live Webinar on November 18, “Go Viral II: The Art of Making and Spreading Original Content Online,” the show’s creators Jesse Warren and Mark Gantt (also its star) will explain how they secured their deal with Sony Pictures Television based on a single trailer. Sign up here
to join in the discussion.