Toyomichi Kurita: Zooms

From American Cinematographer, A Luminous Afterglow by Ron Magid (March 1998)

Of course, that task becomes even tougher when the lens of choice is invariably a zoom, but Kurita has actually learned to stop worrying and love the zoom:

"When I started assisting on films, most of the cameraman said to avoid using the zoom. But since then, the Cooke lenses have become very good. I developed an idea of how to use the zoom with Alan, and I started learning certain choreographed movements. The zoom can tell the story-- through maybe not conventionally-- by following the actors around. In the end, it can get into their faces very tightly and reveal their expressions and their eyes. Alan likes that, and I do as well."

- Toyomichi Kurita

"I warned the camera assistant, 'Listen, by the third day, you're going to have to get a new zoom motor.' When he asked why, I said, 'You'll see.' It's not even like you can see the zoom moving; we just put it on the low dial and it creeps. Finally, the inventor of the motor we were using came to visit, and he said to us, 'What is it with you guys?' He gave us some space-age model that he'd invented, the latest thing, and he couldn't believe it when we burned that out too. I said, 'Look, if I were Spielberg or someone people paid attention to, you might invent something to accommodate the way I shoot.' Instead, I just kept burning out zoom motors, which I always do."

- Toyomichi Kurita

While the zoom enabled Rudalph to create more sustained performances, the long takes made great demands on Kurita's photographic crew. The cinematographer says,

"I think that approach worked for the actors, but in the end, we were dealing with a long lens, the focus was difficult and the dolly grip had to be hitting preset marks. All of those factors had to [work together], so it became very complicated for everyone around the camera. It was almost like dancing with the actors."

- Toyomichi Kurita

No comments:

Post a Comment

I am always open to relevant, professional feedback, opinions and critical critique.

go raibh maith agat!