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Proceedings Paper

"Zea"-Because It's There
Author(s): Eric Chamberlain
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Paper Abstract

The Subject is a long standing symbiotic relationship between Zea and the movies. As usual the impossible was required - to attain cinema release quality films with dramatic interpretation - at the same time using Hy-speed macro photographic techniques. The subject was not to be recognizable until the end of the film - some four minutes long. Zea is explosive, it reacts to heat and is extremely difficult to predict when it will explode, which left little time for the focus, stop down and shooting. Using a Hy-cam at 5,000 pictures per second - a 400 ft. roll of 7247 raw stock, left but a brief three seconds for synchronization. To add to the confusion, two co-directors, a cameraman, plus equipment, were jammed into a 2 x 2m space. To achieve reasonable resolution for theatrical showing, 400,000 foot/candles of light were needed. This was achieved. The film was edited and music from Vaughan Williams' "Fantasia" recorded at St. Martins-in-the-Fields, London was added. The result was sent to the Cannes Film Festival, where it was given the Jury Award.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 March 1983
PDF: 2 pages
Proc. SPIE 0348, 15th Intl Congress on High Speed Photography and Photonics, (1 March 1983); doi: 10.1117/12.967708
Show Author Affiliations
Eric Chamberlain, National Film Board of Canada (Canada)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 0348:
15th Intl Congress on High Speed Photography and Photonics
Lincoln L. Endelman, Editor(s)

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