Latest News Delivers Hybrid Cloud Playout Solution with AJA BRIDGE NDI 3G

Cloud playout is quickly gaining favor among broadcasters and content providers, making it easier to enhance the viewer experience by accelerating the launch of new channels and enabling more cost-efficient content delivery. However, going all in on the cloud is more challenging for media providers with legacy SDI infrastructure. To answer this demand, develops next-generation full and hybrid cloud playout solutions. Its team serves clients across the UK, Europe, Asia, and Brazil, including SES, Red Bee, and others. 

Leveraging the elasticity and redundancy of the cloud, its solutions are designed with microservices, containerized via the Docker platform, and deployed using Kubernetes. When a client recently expressed interest in a playout system with NDI and SDI inputs and outputs, the team combined its cloud-enabled playout solution coralPlay with AJA’s BRIDGE NDI 3G IP gateway device to deliver a solution. CEO Peter Hajittofi shared, “The customer’s video router was already in use by a legacy system, so we had to be extra careful during the implementation phase. The company was considering a transition to NDI for some workflows within their facility in the future, so that was a factor in our decision to utilize the AJA BRIDGE NDI 3G. This, paired with coralPlay, allowed us to provide both SDI and NDI inputs and outputs simultaneously for added flexibility.” 

CoralPlay is a new generation of playout software that provides an automation control interface and video pipelines capable of playing video and audio in various formats, including XDCAM, AVC Intra, IMX, MPEG-2, and MPEG-4. It also supports several wrappers such as MXF, MOV, and GXF, as well as SD, HD, and UltraHD resolutions, and boasts an internal graphics generator, keyer, master control switcher, DVE, up/down scaler, SCTE inserter/detector, subtitler, and loudness normalization. 

Output of DVB MPEG-2 transport streams or H264 with Dolby D, MPEG1, or AAC audio is also supported with the system, and NewTek NDI I/O and HLS can be used for preview. Optionally, using an AJA video card, SDI video can be output via coralPlay, and inputs can be NDI, H264, or MPEG-2 transport streams. The solution can scale from one to hundreds of channels, and channels can be launched within seconds and/or decommissioned easily after use, all in the software and without complex re-wiring. 

coralPlay customers can leverage the technology to manage the playout of their channels. They can import playlists manually, or the system can load them automatically. The technology is compatible with dynamic traffic interfaces and allows for last-minute changes to on-air playlists. When playlists are loaded, the system will automatically look for media that corresponds with the media IDs in the playlists. Media can be stored locally, held in deeper storage (either in the cloud via a solution like Amazon S3 or in an archive within a facility), or kept on nearline storage on a NAS or SAN. The system will automatically retrieve media, both primary and secondary, that is needed for playout from any deep storage location.

Commenting on the decision to use BRIDGE NDI 3G and his experience, Hajittofi concluded, “We were particularly drawn to BRIDGE NDI 3G’s live I/O preview and simultaneous source/ destination capabilities. Both features provide great insight and visibility into the current status of NDI streams and make configuration/control of the BRIDGE NDI 3G simple. Overall, we’ve been very happy with the BRIDGE NDI 3G and the support we’ve received from AJA.” 

Digital Cinema Society’s Post Expo is back on April 1st!

After a 3 year pause, the Digital Cinema Society’s 2023 Post Expo is coming back. Join them April 1st from 1 PM to 5 PM at Canon Burbank.  LAPPG will be there too, so be sure to swing by our table and say “hi!”

This fact filled afternoon of important post-production topics will include:

  • Reference Monitoring
  • HDR
  • Advanced Resolution
  • Storage
  • Standards Compliance
  • Camera 2 Cloud
  • Virtual Post Production

Join invited representatives from (in alphabetical order):

  • Adobe/
  • AJA
  • Avid
  • Blackmagic Design
  • Canon
  • Cinnafilm
  • Light Iron
  • Lumberjack
  • Netflix
  • OWC
  • PIX/X2X

There will be abundant time for Q&A and interaction with our representatives and special guests.

Special guests:
Assistant Editors Zekun Mao and Aashish D’Mello, members of the award winning editorial team from “Everything Everywhere All at Once”.

Zekun and Aashish will discuss the challenges of keeping assets organized for such a complex storyline, technical workflow, and share their personal career paths.

Experience the future of streamlined post-production workflows with Mistika Technology at NAB Show 2023

SGO, a leading provider of post-production solutions, is returning to NAB Show taking place from 16-19 April 2023 at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

Significant points to highlight at the show will be the latest developments of Mistika Technology relevant for trending industry topics such as virtual production, immersive storytelling, streamlined media and metadata management and VFX workflows. “We are very excited to be back at NAB taking the opportunity to connect with our customers and partners in person and showcase some incredible new technology,” said Geoff Mills, Managing Director at SGO.

Visitors to SGO’s private cabana W1068 in the West Hall will have the opportunity to discover a whole new world of possibilities to completely automate and optimize their media processing tasks and unlock next-gen post-production workflows. “We are taking a slightly different approach at NAB this year by offering one-to-one discussions in a relaxed environment, allowing visitors to have private conversations and connect with the team of Mistika experts,” shared Geoff Mills.

In addition, SGO will be previewing Mistika 11, a massive upgrade to Mistika Ultima and Boutique that will introduce a completely redesigned Gallery, significantly boosting the speed and efficiency of operations.
Join SGO at NAB Show 2023 to experience the future of media production and discover how Mistika Technology can revolutionize your post-production workflows. Register now with SGO Guest Pass Code LV27748* and be a part of this exciting event!
*Note: Guest Passes increase from $0 to $50 after 1 April 2023.

Top Gun: Maverick and Better Call Saul
Take Top Honors
59th CAS Awards Reveal Best in Sound Mixing for 2022

The sound mixing teams for Top Gun: Maverick, Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio, Moonage Daydream and Obi-Wan Kenobi were the big film winners, while Better Call Saul, Only Murders In The Building and Formula 1: Drive to Survive won the top television honors at the 59th Cinema Audio Society (CAS) Awards in Los Angeles on March 4.

The awards for outstanding sound mixing in film went to:

  • Motion Picture — Live Action: Top Gun: Maverick (Production Mixer: Mark Weingarten, Re-Recording Mixer: Chris Burdon, Re-Recording Mixer: Mark Taylor, Scoring Mixer: Al Clay, Scoring Mixer: Stephen Lipson, Foley Mixer: Blake Collins CAS)
  • Motion Picture — Animated: Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio (Original Dialogue Mixer: Carlos Sotolongo, Re-Recording Mixer: Jon Taylor CAS, Re-Recording Mixer: Frank Montaño, Scoring Mixer: Peter Cobbin, Scoring Mixer: Kirsty Whalley, Foley Mixer: Tavish Grade)
  • Motion Picture — Documentary: Moonage Daydream (Re-Recording Mixer: Paul Massey CAS, Re-Recording Mixer: David Giammarco CAS, ADR Mixer: Jens Rosenlund Petersen)
  • Non-Theatrical Motion Pictures or Limited Series: Obi-Wan Kenobi E6, Part 1 (Production Mixer: Julian Howarth CAS, Re-Recording Mixer: Bonnie Wild, Re-Recording Mixer: Danielle Dupre, Re-Recording Mixer: Scott R. Lewis, ADR Mixer: Doc Kane CAS, Foley Mixer: Jason Butler)

The awards for outstanding sound mixing in television went to:

  • Television Series — One Hour: Better Call Saul S6:E13, Saul Gone (Production Mixer: Phillip W. Palmer CAS, Re-Recording Mixer: Larry Benjamin CAS, Re-Recording Mixer: Kevin Valentine, ADR Mixer: Chris Navarro CAS, Foley Mixer: Stacey Michaels CAS)
  • Television Series — Half Hour: Only Murders In The Building S2:E5, The Tell (Production Mixer: Joseph White Jr. CAS, Re-Recording Mixer: Penny Harold CAS, Re-Recording Mixer: Andrew Garrett Lange CAS, Scoring Mixer: Alan Demoss, ADR Mixer: Chris Navarro CAS, Foley Mixer: Erika Koski)
    Television Series — Non-Fiction, Variety or Music/Series or Specials: Formula 1: Drive to Survive, S4:E9 Gloves Are Off (Re-Recording Mixer: Nick Fry, Re-Recording Mixer: Steve Speed)

The 59th Annual Cinema Audio Society Awards returned to InterContinental Los Angeles Downtown on Saturday, March 4, hosted by comedian/producer Ben Gleib (Ice Age: Continental Drift, The Mad King). He kicked off the event with a hilarious sendup geared toward the sound community, quipping, “Without sound … we would all be reading a book right now.”

Upon receiving the CAS Filmmaker Award, director Alejandro González Iñárritu cherished the crucial work of sound mixers in his acceptance speech, saying, “There is a reason why cinema is called an audio-visual medium. Audio is first, before visuals. Sound hits our bodies sensorially. Without intellectualization, we are just hit primally and it strikes our imagination and it’s boundless and it’s first.” Guillermo del Toro (Pinocchio, The Shape of Water, Pan’s Labyrinth), José Antonio García (Roma, Iron Man 3, Nope) and Jon Taylor (The Revenant) presented the award.

Honored with the CAS Career Achievement Award, production sound mixer Peter J. Devlin CAS (Wakanda Forever, Star Trek: Picard) gave a heartfelt acceptance speech about the importance of sound, saying, “Because ours is, quite simply, the most collaborative, creative endeavor anywhere. It doesn’t simply take a village; it takes a whole city to create a film or TV show.” Noted director Patty Jenkins (Wonder Woman, Monster) and supervising dialogue editor Teri E. Dorman (Pirates Of The Caribbean, Da Vinci Code) presented the award.

Outgoing CAS President Karol Urban described the event as a smashing success and summarized, “There is magic in this organization created by sound mixers for sound mixers. Mentorship, community and kindness are critical keystones to our success. Tonight, our membership stands at just over 1,000, providing a greater diversity of experience and covering the globe in a larger international footprint than ever before. Together, we thrive through volunteerism, honoring our legends and ensuring a legacy for the future of our craft.”

During the evening’s festivities, CAS members and celebrity presenters also announced the Student Recognition Award.

Timo Nelson from The University of Texas at Austin won the Student Recognition Award, receiving a check for $5,000. The other four student finalists each took home $1,000 from the CAS, along with $10,000 in products and gear to help launch their careers in sound, thanks to the support of these generous companies: Acon Digital, Avid, Deity Microphones, DTS, Halter Technical, IZotope, JBL Professional by Harman, K-Tek, Krotos Audio, Lectrosonics, Inc., McDSP, ShotDeck, Sounddogs, Sound Particles and Todd-AO / Absentia DX.

Distinguished guests at the awards ceremony included: Guillermo del Toro (Pinocchio, Shape Of Water), Nancy Cartwright (The Simpsons), Sara Dosa (Fire Of Love), Kiowa Gordon (Dark Winds), Ernie Hudson (Grace And Frankie, Ghostbusters), Patty Jenkins (Wonder Woman, Monster), Olivia Liang (Kung Fu), Baz Luhrmann (Elvis, Moulin Rouge), Elizabeth Mitchell (Outer Banks, Lost), Cheyenne Isabel Wells and Marisa Davila (Grease: Rise Of The Pink Ladies).

The newly elected CAS board of directors took their first official group photo at the event and will be announced this week.

The Cinema Audio Society thanks the 59th CAS Awards sponsors and partners:

Cocktail Reception Sponsor: Dolby

Diamond: Formosa Group, HBO Max, NBC Universal, Netflix, Paramount Pictures, Walt Disney Company

Platinum: Amazon Prime Studios, IATSE Local 695

Gold: Warner Bros. Pictures

Double Silver: Walt Disney Company

Silver: Fox, IATSE Local 700, Lectrosonics

Media Partners: Backstage, Below The Line, Filmmaker Magazine, The Hollywood Reporter, PostPerspective, Shoot and Variety.

Industry Partners: American Cinema Editors (ACE), Entertainment Industry Professionals Mentoring Alliance (EIPMA), Hollywood Professional Association (HPA), Los Angeles Post Production Group, Motion Picture Sound Editors (MPSE) and Soundworks Collection.

Warner Bros. Post Production Creative Services Worldwide donated the attendee gift bags, filled with valuable gifts from Dr. Bronners, Eargasm, Film Movement, Gaffer Power, Lectrosonics, Inc. and Halter Technical.

Talent transportation is provided by KLS Worldwide.

ZEISS Cinematography Returns to SXSW Creative Industries Expo
Exclusive Conversation Rob McLachlan, ASC, CSC 

Rob McLachlan, ASC, CSC shoots with ZEISS

Austin, Texas, March 12-15: ZEISS is back this March to showcase the latest in cine lens and visual effects technology at the South by Southwest Creative Industries Expo. The distinguished lens maker will exhibit modern cinema optics, as well as presenting a conversation with esteemed cinematographer Rob McLachlan, ASC, CSC.

Attendees can try out ZEISS cine lenses on display at booth #1335, including Supreme Prime, Supreme Prime Radiance, CZ.2 Zoom, CP.3, and more. The team will also hold live demos of the CinCraft Mapper metadata application. CinCraft Mapper provides frame-accurate lens distortion and shading data, enabling VFX artists to achieve a cinematic result that is realistic and precise, without relying on a lens grid.

Sunday, March 12, 4:00-5:00p CT, visitors are invited to sit in as ZEISS’ Senior Marketing Manager of Photo and Cinema, Tony Wisniewski, leads a candid conversation with one of today’s top Directors of Photography. Rob McLachlan, ASC, CSC, of Game of Thrones fame, will discuss his cinematic process and working with Supreme Prime and Supreme Prime Radiance lenses on prestigious shows American Gigolo, Shining Girls and Lovecraft Country.

ZEISS Snr Marketing Manager, Photo & Cinema, Tony Wisniewski

The SXSW Film Awards presentation is on Tuesday, March 14, at The Paramount Theater. At the event, ZEISS will sponsor the fifth annual ZEISS Cinematography Award, once again honoring exemplary cinematography. The winning filmmaker is chosen from among all the contenders in the 2023 Film Festival.

Join ZEISS at Creative Industries Expo Booth #1335:
Follow the ZEISS Conversation with Rob MacLachlan, ASC, CSC – Austin Convention Center, Room 17AB:

Time in Pixels’ Nobe OmniScope and AJA I/O Technology Advance Video Analysis 

Access to accurate information about the color and exposure of source footage is crucial to the color workflow on any production, making video scopes essential to modern grading suites and digital imaging technician (DIT) carts. Recognizing a need to address persistent information gaps, Time in Pixels Founder Tomasz (Tom) Huczek developed Nobe OmniScope, a software-based suite of scopes that help creative professionals analyze a broad range of video sources and imagery with standard post production tools. An AJA Developer Partner, Time in Pixels worked closely with AJA to deliver Nobe OmniScope support for AJA desktop and mobile products like KONA 4 and Io XT, in addition to AJA U-TAP and T-TAP Pro. KONA 5 and Io X3 integrations are planned to support future customer demand. 

Specializing in building tools for filmmakers, colorists, and post professionals who work on high-profile cinematic, commercial, and episodic projects, and, increasingly, photographers, Time in Pixels launched Nobe OmniScope in 2021. Huczek and team initially designed the software – which supports industry-standard post applications like Adobe Premiere Pro, After Effects, LightRoom and Photoshop, Apple Final Cut Pro, and Assimilate Scratch, among others – with colorists in mind. Upon launch, demand quickly rolled in from other creative disciplines, including DITs, as well as live and virtual production professionals and monitor calibration specialists. Color scientists have also leveraged the technology to verify some of their theories or to experiment with formulas.

“All the customer feedback we receive is invaluable, and we do our best to accommodate it. This includes requests for support for popular audio and video I/O technology from AJA Video Systems,” Huczek shared. “Requesting a Developer unit from AJA was a smooth process, and the SDK was easy to follow, which made the integration seamless. It’s been a pleasure collaborating with AJA on the integration.”

A typical Nobe OmniScope setup in a facility or on a DIT cart includes a color grading workstation equipped with a computer, a high-quality monitor, and a color grading panel; the software; and an audio and video I/O card or box. Although the software supports a range of I/O tools, Time in Pixels regularly recommends AJA’s I/O devices to customers. “AJA gear is easy to use and install, and it’s durable,” noted Huczek. “We’re confident that it’s going to work as promised for our customers, with high color accuracy and low latency, so we know they’ll be happy with it.” 

With the continued rise in demand for HDR production and post in recent years, Time in Pixels has received several customer inquiries about best practices for monitoring HDR content. “When it comes to a question of HDR with Nobe OmniScope, we often recommend AJA KONA 4 for I/O because it’s well-suited for this application and is future-proof,” Huczek added. “It works well for HDR and virtual production environments.”

As the industry continues to rapidly evolve, Huczek and team remain optimistic and are prepared to address emerging technology developments. “I think we’ll continue to see new and interesting advancements in XR, virtual production, HDR, and more, and we’re tailoring our roadmap accordingly. AJA also has a track record of releasing products that address emerging market needs, so I’m confident there will be more AJA tools to come that bring interesting new opportunities for both AJA and Time in Pixels,” Huczek concluded. 

6P Color’s Full Color Range™ System Premiering at HPA
Revealing Colors Between the Colors

This year’s HPA Tech Retreat saw 6P Color Inc’s debut in the iZone, where visitors were invited to experience the latest advancements in color processing and display technology. For the first time, demonstrations were held of 6P Color’s Full Color Range (FCR™) system, designed to offer an unprecedented viewing experience by providing nearly full spectrum color to displays including monitors, LED walls, and digital projectors.

FCR is an end-to-end color system starting with captured or generated scene data from a camera or CG render. The system processes and transports all captured or created colors to displays using established tools, formats, and standards. Much of the color information processed and transported by the FCR system is beyond the boundaries of traditional RGB color gamuts. To show these colors, displays are being exhibited with primaries beyond RGB. The result is an ultra-wide color gamut offering a new frontier of aesthetic and creative possibility, with applications spanning filmmaking, live production, gaming, and medical imaging.

While standard RGB P3 displays reproduce just 45 percent of visible colors, 6P Color’s 81” demonstration display shows over 75 percent. 6P invites HPA’s discerning attendees to ask questions and offer feedback on these innovations. Attendees will experience content captured by standard cameras and processed via the proprietary FCR Yxy pipeline with the application of an additional Cyan primary. Other color primaries are in lab development.

FCR is already at work. It is currently being used by select colorists in Hollywood with a full creative DaVinci Resolve System employing today’s most accepted workflow and standards. According to top Colorist, Cullen Kelly, “FCR is a game-changer for filmmakers. It provides the ability to reproduce more original scene colors than previously possible, while at the same time offering wider creative possibility in the color grade. Adoption of this system is inevitable: the only question is how well creatives will utilize this exciting new tool.”

Following HPA, a series of screenings, Enabling Digital Color Without Limits will demonstrate this new advance. Contact Rachel Jobin at for information about demos, and other details.

For more information visit

Cinematographer Zach Kuperstein Shoots with ZEISS for Barbarian

Cinematographer Zach Kuperstein was tapped by Boulderlight Pictures to lens the 2022 hit horror-thriller Barbarian, directed by Zach Cregger. The film follows the sinister happenings at and under 476 Barbary Street in a downtrodden neighborhood in the outskirts of Detroit. The genre-twisting narrative opens as Tess Marshall (Georgina Campbell) arrives to find a suspicious stranger (Bill Skarsgård as Keith Toshko) staying in her Air BNB. There’s more than poor management afoot and after unearthing a hidden underground tunnel, things go from bad to worse.

Cinematographer Zach Kuperstein behind the scenes of 20th Century Studios’ BARBARIAN, exclusively on Hulu. Photo by Elena Nenkova. © 2022 20th Century Studios. All Rights Reserved.

Just as it seems Tess will disappear without a trace, AJ Gilbride (Justin Long), a ne’er-do-well Hollywood celebrity, arrives on the scene to take stock of his Michigan properties, including the house on Barbary.

It was no small undertaking to re-create the burned-out suburbs of Detroit in Bulgaria, where the film was set to shoot. “I had never been to Detroit,” says Kuperstein. “Looking at the reference photos, I was shocked. I didn’t know that there was an area that existed like that.” Production Designer Rossitsa Bakeva dived enthusiastically into bringing the desolated setting of the film to life. Abandoned run-down houses crowd to either side of the hero house, which is jarringly well-maintained. “Finally, a few months later we ended up going to Detroit. Driving around the streets, I was relieved to see that we had actually kind of nailed it.”

Barbarian was Kuperstein’s first time shooting with the Sony VENICE I. “I’d never used the VENICE but I’d heard rave reviews from other DPs. I needed it for low light, shooting at 2,500 ISO without concern. I also wanted fast lenses to pair with it, considering all the stuff in the tunnels, lit only with flashlights.” He decided on the ZEISS Supreme Primes and a CP.3 to accommodate the large format sensor and low-light requirements. “I wanted fast lenses, and I wanted it to be sharp and present and feel different from other work that I’ve done.”

The camera package came from Magic Shop Rentals in Bulgaria; however, the rental house did not have the 18mm or 21mm Supreme Primes. Because of the film’s many wide-wide angle shots and scenes, there was no way he could shoot the film without going wider than his Supreme Prime 25mm. After testing several other lenses, they offered Kuperstein the 15mm CP.3 ZEISS. “That hit the mark for a 15mm, and it turned out to be really helpful because we needed that lightweight lens to shoot with the gimbal later on.”

In the past, Kuperstein had often opted for vintage lenses or lenses with unusual characteristics, but on Barbarian the Supreme Primes were just what he wanted. “I think it’s all about the closeups and just the presence of the lens and sharpness and how clean it is. There’s nothing between the viewer and the image. In Barbarian I wanted it to be very direct and what you see is what you get. These lenses did a great job of that.” He elaborates, “It was really nice to have low distortion and the clean lines of the stairs going up.”

The two Zachs approached the look of the film by emphasizing the three distinct environments: upstairs, downstairs and the flashback. “The upstairs should feel like a David Fincher movie, and the downstairs should feel like a Sam Raimi movie. That meant upstairs had very controlled, deliberate camera movement, consistently building suspense. There’s a lot of tension in the air. But downstairs its fast-paced, almost ridiculous. The camera movement is over the top.” Then for the memorable flashback sequence, the filmmakers created stylized, extremely wide-angled shots, very distinct from the rest of the movie.

“For lighting, I often look at Roger Deakins’ work. Prisoners has a lot of good flashlight work in it. When Jake Gyllenhaal’s character goes into the basement with the priest, I love the way the flashlight is creating a silhouette, then highlighting something and revealing things.” Eerie flashlight lighting characterizes the horror of Barbarian’s underground tunnels. Fast lenses were key to his approach. “I was a little worried to bring the Supreme Primes to Zach [Cregger] because they don’t flare that much. But he said, ‘I don’t want any flares from the flashlight. That’s too much.’ With the Supremes, there’s minimal flaring, so it was nice to be able to have control of that and keep it very, very clean and pristine.”

The CP.3 15mm also came in handy in unanticipated ways. Kuperstein describes using the Rialto with it. “We did some of the stuff in the underground pit with the Rialto because it was pretty tight, and the handheld operating required fast moves.” Other notably tight spaces included the various car work, especially in the flashback sequence. “The Rialto is still kind of big and heavy, so balancing it with the Ronin RS 2 was a challenge. In one scene, we needed to pass the camera through a narrow car window.” His team improvised a way to hold the RS 2 sideways and coordinated a delicate handoff, where the camera started stationary on a set of apple boxes before being lifted by the operator and passed through the car window to Kuperstein inside. “Because the operator was cabled to the camera, he had to sit on the windowsill and the best boy grip held him against the car as it started to drive. I’m just very grateful that that lens was tiny and that it all balanced.”

Barbarian is an undeniable success, grossing $45 million at the box office against a $4.5 million budget. With a surprising script, filled with cinematic twists and turns, Kuperstein calls it, “a horror movie for people who don’t necessarily like horror movies.”

Barbarian is available to watch online with HBO Max.

Steve Yedlin, ASC, lenses Glass Onion: A Knives Out Story with ZEISS Supreme Primes

Yedlin, ASC on location for "Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery" (2022)

Long-time collaborators, cinematographer Steve Yedlin, ASC, and director Rian Johnson, have been pushing each other creatively since their late teens. Yedlin would go on to lens all of Johnson’s feature films, notably Looper and Star Wars: Episode VIII The Last Jedi. Their latest film, Glass Onion, is the follow-up to the 2019 blockbuster Knives Out. Featuring the return of Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig), the fun, fast-paced whodunnit follows the sleuth to a fictional Greek Island, where Blanc peels back the layers of intrigue surrounding narcissistic tech billionaire Miles Bron (Edward Norton).

By now Yedlin and Johnson have their own creative shorthand. “In prep, we don’t spend much time talking about references because we already know we agree on tastes,” Yedlin shares. “We use the prep time to really dive in and design the shots and scenes that we are doing.” To help plan moves and select focal lengths, they were outfitted with two director’s finders equipped with Cinema Zooms.

The team chose ARRI ALEXA Mini LF with ZEISS Supreme Primes and Cinema Zooms for the clean technical procession they needed. Glass Onion marked Yedlin’s first experience with these optics. “For me, it’s not the lens itself making a visual statement, it’s a tool for me to make my own visual style. I love the ZEISS lenses, but not because they imbue the movie with a specific character that another lens wouldn’t have,” he explains. “Their technical performance allows us to be creative in other ways. They free me to do whatever we want because they sort of have everything that I wish a lens would have. Now we can be much more daring.”

He points to lighting. “The Supreme’s flares are very contained. When you overload the lens with light, you still get the flare, but it’s confined to a local area around it, while other lenses would literally obliterate the image. Now we can do things like have an upstage light that’s in the shot actually lighting the scene, instead of using an upstage light that’s in shot that’s supposed to be lighting it, while another one, out of shot is really lighting it.”

Dynamic movement and controlled, deliberate cinematography shape the film. “The idea is always to tell the story in the best visual way possible, not distracting from it with show-offy camera movement,” he explains. “We love designed dolly moves as opposed to rambling with handheld or Steadicam, where you don’t know what’s going to happen.” Like in the climactic atrium scene: Blanc dramatically reveals what he’s deduced, as the camera dollies through the set’s precariously positioned glass sculptures, adding to the visual intrigue.

Although Yedlin and Johnson favor the dolly, other key shots necessitated dramatic changes in height. Yedlin’s trusted crew was meticulous about how they integrated a crane into their approach. “We had an absolutely fantastic dolly grip, Jax, who was able to do things that made it feel like a solid, confident dolly, even though the crane actually has a lot of loose axes,” he continues. “We love intentional, crafted, and exuberant camera movement that’s also meant to cut. The idea of how everything will edit together is always completely integral.”

The team made use of the ZEISS eXtended Data technology from viewing the monitor readout on set through post-production. With a keen grasp of technology, Yedlin credits “the hard work of the folks at FotoKem who wrote custom code to set up our unique pipeline.”

Yedlin likes to have post add custom levels of lens distortion/curvature to his films. Because there is only minor inherent distortion in ZEISS Supreme Primes and Cinema Zooms, adding idealized curvature to the final edit becomes relatively straightforward. FotoKem used the lens metadata to accelerate this process. “We don’t need to have a human pouring through camera reports to figure it all out. For visual effects, it’s better because the ZEISS lens isn’t funky and crazy. We can author exactly how much curvature we want…you get a clean image, and then you can add funkiness rather than being cornered into it,” he concludes.

Once again Yedlin and Johnson’s compelling cinematography and visual storytelling are a success. Today Glass Onion hits a 93 on the Rotten Tomatoes scale and tops the chart on Netflix’s 10 most-watched films.

Cinematographer Steve Yedlin, ASC, at ZEISS Demo Center

NFMLA’s February Film Festival InFocus: Black Cinema

NewFilmmakers Los Angeles is hosting its February Monthly Film Festival and celebrating Black History Month with their annual InFocus: Black Cinema Program, spotlighting Black stories and emerging Black talent in front of and behind the camera across two shorts programs and a spectrum of genres, along with director Stuart McClave’s debut feature documentary ‘On The Line: The Richard Williams Story.’ Featuring nuanced stories of loss and joy, the complex portrait of the father of Venus and Serena Williams, and a visually rich exploration of connection, community, and identity, this is a Festival you won’t want to miss! For more information on this February 18th event and to purchase tickets, visit

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