LG Electronics, HD Vision Studios and 16x9 Productions Shoot Pioneering HD Content
Spectators at a Drag Race in Tucson, AZ, rubbernecked and queried each other in amazement as an unusual looking vehicle crossed their paths over and over again throughout the day. It wasn’t a Top Fuel Funny Car or even a Jet. It was an all-terrain vehicle with a portable HD VTR, a 9-inch HDTV monitor, a tripod, a ton of batteries and a motley high-definition (HD) crew piled on.
Such attention isn’t unusual for HD pioneers Kristen Cox and Randall Dark, who’ve done their share of shooting with the latest HD technologies manufacturers have to offer. When hired by digital television leader LG Electronics to capture HD demonstration content in 1080p at 4:2:2, the adventure was on. Equipped with Sony F-900 Cine Alta cameras owned by HD Vision Studios, Cox decided to rent the SR-1 VTR and cart the machine and monitor around.
The HD production team, whose members varied from location to location, shot five separate demo programs for LG. “Nature” was shot on location at the LA Zoo; three music videos, “Legacy,” “One Day” and “Like an Ocean,” by artists Dennis Lamar and Angie Paris, were shot on location in Waco, TX, and the aforementioned drag race, “Speed,” was shot on location in Arizona.
Arizona was the location where ATVs were utilized. In Los Angeles and Waco, Cox and her team traveled on a rolling cart and a Mag Liner. Shooters Randall Dark, Allan Westbrook and Dave Nash were tethered by coaxial cable to the cart or ATV where DIT, Sean Fairburn managed the images being recorded directly to the SR. Kristen Cox directed from the vantage point of the 9-inch HD monitor. The cart carried the VTR, monitor batteries and small sundries. The Mag Liner was loaded with lenses, additional batteries, chargers, etc.
“Each location presented its own set of challenges. The one common thread was that we went through batteries very quickly and all but one of our setups were outdoor locations where power was not available. We had to get pretty creative when it came to finding a place to charge batteries. In Waco, we used Baylor University’s campus and had to be prepared to shoot between classes or else deal with a herd of college students passing through. The Drag Race presented us with a very large venue to cover and some tricky camera angles—oh yeah, and there was the catastrophic bodily harm risk as well,” said Kristen Cox, Director.
The content is destined for use in retail stores nationwide, showing off the capabilities of LG’s 2007 flat-panel digital HDTVs, which will include more than a dozen “Full HD” plasma and liquid crystal display (LCD) models with 1080p display capability. LG Electronics is the world’s largest maker of TV flat panels and longtime leader in HDTV technologies, meaning that LG is well positioned to bring the latest high-definition technologies like progressive-scan 1920 x 1080 screens to market.
“Kristen Cox and Randall Dark are pioneers in HD program production, true experts in their field, always pushing the envelope of creativity and HD production techniques,” said John Taylor, vice president, public affairs, LG Electronics, USA. “So it made perfect sense for LG to reach out to HD Vision Studios and 16x9 Productions to produce unique and compelling 1080p programming for our newest Full HD flat-screen HDTVs.”
With post production complete and the demo programs in their finished form, customers will marvel at the clarity and resolution a lion’s golden, yellow eyes. They’ll see flesh tones accurately represented as Dennis Lamar walks across on a sunlit suspension bridge or as Angie Paris stands among a garden of roses. And they’ll be blown away by the contrast of a jet engine at night that suddenly lights up white-hot when flames blast at ignition.