Filmmaker overcomes distortion by employing Fujinon wide-angle lens

Filmmaker Marek Poray-Heywowski recently traveled to Switzerland to shoot “The Interrogation of Harry Wind” for Sunvision Filmatelier with Fujinon’s XS8x4AS-XB8 wide-angle lens mounted on a Sony PMW-EX3 camcorder. The spy thriller recently wrapped principal photography and is scheduled for release in early 2010.

Set in Zurich in the 1950s and based on a true story, the movie follows special agent Rappold (actor Klaus Maria Brandauer), who, shortly before retirement, has to bring down influential Swiss businessman Harry Wind (actor Sebastian Koch), who is accused of spying.

Principal photography was shot with a pair of Panavision cameras. The film’s second unit was outfitted with the more lightweight Sony PMW-EX3 camcorder to shoot a sequence from a vintage ’50s era helicopter. According to Poray-Heywowski, the wide-angle adapter for the original lens caused distortions. The XS8x4AS-XB8 wide-angle Fujinon lens was selected based on a recommendation found within the camera’s instruction manual.

With the Fujinon lens, Poray-Heywowski also was able to shoot in an elevator shaft on location in Switzerland, avoiding the time and expense of employing a set designer to create one. “We were able to create a beautiful shot in a very small space without any fisheye effect. The lens created a perfect recta-linear image without bow lines that wide-angle lenses tend to create,” Poray said.