1.85:1 xfer of 2.35:1 theatrical == Pan & Scan???

Discussion in 'DVD Video' started by lasitter, Aug 7, 2005.

  1. lasitter

    lasitter Guest

    Anamorphic or not, using a 16:9 set, how is a 1.85:1 transfer of a
    2.35:1 (or wider) film NOT just a wider Pan & Scan?

    I've read a fair number of pages and NG responses, but I just don't see
    how you're not cutting off some of image.
    lasitter, Aug 7, 2005
    #1
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  2. lasitter

    Joshua Zyber Guest

    "lasitter" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Anamorphic or not, using a 16:9 set, how is a 1.85:1 transfer of a
    > 2.35:1 (or wider) film NOT just a wider Pan & Scan?


    Ideally, a 2.35:1 movie image should be letterboxed within the 16:9
    anamorphic area of a DVD.

    > I've read a fair number of pages and NG responses, but I just don't
    > see
    > how you're not cutting off some of image.


    If the 2.35:1 movie has been modified to fill a 16:9 screen, either the
    sides will be cropped or you may be seeing excess picture info at the
    top and bottom of the screen if it is an open-matte transfer.
    Joshua Zyber, Aug 7, 2005
    #2
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  3. lasitter

    lasitter Guest

    > Ideally, a 2.35:1 movie image should be letterboxed within the 16:9
    > anamorphic area of a DVD.


    This is what I'd like to see.

    >> I've read a fair number of pages and NG responses, but I just don't
    >> see how you're not cutting off some of image.


    > If the 2.35:1 movie has been modified to fill a 16:9 screen


    Would be nice if they said: "Modified to fill a 16:9 screen" ...

    > either the sides will be cropped or you may be seeing excess picture info at
    > the top and bottom of the screen if it is an open-matte transfer.


    I was so blissfully ignorant before trying to figure this stuff out.
    It's only been quite recently that I've learned, by reading posts here,
    about how theatres can "opt to show 1.85 flat at 2:1 flat and to show
    2.35 anamorphic at 2:1 anamorphic".

    Now I have no idea about what I have seen in theatres versus what the
    director / cinematographer might have wanted me to see. This is yet
    another exciting variable (lack of focus / low wattage bulbs, talkers,
    etc.) for the theatre going experience.

    Someone else here posted a link with a good explaination of hard / soft
    / open matting. It makes MORE sense now, but it seems to me that the
    whole story is rarely available on the packaging.

    You almost need to go retail shopping with a live wireless link (or
    shop only online) to get the straight scoop before buying.

    Seems to me that it now helps to know about the original film / scope
    process ...

    Kinetograph
    Academy Ratio
    ArriScope-ArriVision
    Cinerama
    Cinerama 70mm
    CinemaScope
    Dimension 150
    Fearless SuperFilm
    Grandeur 70mm
    Imax
    J-D-C Scope
    Magnascope / Magniscope Grandeur
    Matted 1.66:1 (Paramount)
    Matted 1.85:1 (Universal and Columbia Pictures)
    Metroscope
    Natural Vision / Realife Natural Vision / Realife 70mm
    Panavison (CinemaScope / Panavision)
    Shawscope
    Super 35mm
    SuperScope
    Super Panavision 70mm
    Super Technirama 70mm
    Techniscope
    Technovision
    Technirama 35mm
    Todd-AO
    Todd-AO-35
    Ultra Panavision 70mm and MGM Camera 65
    Vitascope
    VistaVision
    WarnerScope
    Widescreen 1.85:1 (W/Stereo Opt & Dig 5.1)
    (and more)

    .... and the various types of matting employed, layering technology,
    data rates, anamorphic vs not, and all sorts of other stuff.

    What a minefield!
    lasitter, Aug 7, 2005
    #3
  4. lasitter

    Joshua Zyber Guest

    "lasitter" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > I was so blissfully ignorant before trying to figure this stuff out.
    > It's only been quite recently that I've learned, by reading posts
    > here,
    > about how theatres can "opt to show 1.85 flat at 2:1 flat and to show
    > 2.35 anamorphic at 2:1 anamorphic".
    >
    > Now I have no idea about what I have seen in theatres versus what the
    > director / cinematographer might have wanted me to see. This is yet
    > another exciting variable (lack of focus / low wattage bulbs, talkers,
    > etc.) for the theatre going experience.
    >
    > Someone else here posted a link with a good explaination of hard /
    > soft
    > / open matting. It makes MORE sense now, but it seems to me that the
    > whole story is rarely available on the packaging.
    >
    > You almost need to go retail shopping with a live wireless link (or
    > shop only online) to get the straight scoop before buying.
    >
    > Seems to me that it now helps to know about the original film / scope
    > process ...
    >
    > ... and the various types of matting employed, layering technology,
    > data rates, anamorphic vs not, and all sorts of other stuff.


    You're overthinking it. All you really need to worry about is the
    Original Aspect Ratio. It is a very small number of 2.35:1 movies that
    are modified for a different ratio on DVD. Most are presented OAR.
    Joshua Zyber, Aug 7, 2005
    #4
  5. lasitter

    lasitter Guest

    > You're overthinking it.

    Just maybe.

    What if the film was shot open matte and then matted differently for
    showing in different theatres? How do you know what the director /
    cinematographer WANTED you to see?

    Who's to say that the 1.85:1 transfer of an open matte film really does
    show extraneous information on the top and bottom? If you can see mike
    booms and stage hands holding up props, that's one thing, but
    otherwise, I'm not sure.

    Now if the filmmaker turned it out with hard matting then his
    intentions were pretty clear.

    Unless you're looking at the director's cut, how can you be sure? I
    don't know.
    lasitter, Aug 7, 2005
    #5
  6. lasitter

    Jeff Rife Guest

    lasitter () wrote in alt.video.dvd:
    > What if the film was shot open matte and then matted differently for
    > showing in different theatres?


    Other than normal slight differences in projection equipment, this doesn't
    happen.

    A 1.85:1 movie is sent to theaters with the full film frame visible, and
    they matte in the projector. Removing the matte would result in stuff above
    and below the screen with no way to get it on the screen (at least in 99% of
    theaters).

    A 2.35:1 movie is sent to theaters with the full film frame containing an
    anamorphic version of the movie (this is true even if it was filmed using
    an "open matte" process like Super35). To display this, you need a lens
    that unsqueezes it, and there is no matte involved. There is no way to
    show more picture at the top and bottom because it isn't on the film.

    Now, some theaters will show such a film on a 1.85:1 screen and just let
    all the extra picture fall off the sides, but this can't possibly be
    considered "desired" by anyone in the creative chain (or any right-thinking
    viewer).

    > Who's to say that the 1.85:1 transfer of an open matte film really does
    > show extraneous information on the top and bottom?


    If people did an ounce of research into the actual filmmaking process, we
    would never get this question posted again. Instead, we have to see it for
    the 257,196th time in the newsgroup.

    --
    Jeff Rife | "What kind of universe is this where a man can't
    | love his fake wife's mother's best friend?"
    |
    | -- Ned Dorsey, "Ned and Stacey"
    Jeff Rife, Aug 7, 2005
    #6
  7. lasitter

    jayembee Guest

    Jeff Rife <> wrote:

    > lasitter () wrote in alt.video.dvd:
    >> What if the film was shot open matte and then matted differently for
    >> showing in different theatres?

    >
    > Other than normal slight differences in projection equipment, this doesn't
    > happen.


    It's probably happened a lot in the case of European films that are composed for
    1.66:1 and matted in American theaters at 1.85:1.

    And it happens on DVD, too. One example is ROBOCOP, which Criterion
    released with Verhoeven's preferred 1.66:1 ratio, while the MGM release was
    done at the US theatrical ratio of 1.85:1.

    -- jayembee
    jayembee, Aug 8, 2005
    #7
  8. lasitter

    Stan Guest

    Jeff Rife <> wrote in
    news::

    > lasitter () wrote in alt.video.dvd:
    >> What if the film was shot open matte and then matted differently for
    >> showing in different theatres?

    >
    > Other than normal slight differences in projection equipment, this
    > doesn't happen.
    >
    > A 1.85:1 movie is sent to theaters with the full film frame visible,
    > and they matte in the projector.


    snip

    This is only true some of the time and you can't even depend on it holding
    true scene-to-scene within a reel. (I work in a post-production lab).
    Stan, Aug 8, 2005
    #8
  9. lasitter

    Mark Spatny Guest

    On 7 Aug 2005 14:34:53 -0700, "lasitter" <> wrote:

    >Who's to say that the 1.85:1 transfer of an open matte film really does
    >show extraneous information on the top and bottom? If you can see mike
    >booms and stage hands holding up props, that's one thing, but
    >otherwise, I'm not sure.


    You'd be surprised to know how many directors view their work through
    playback monitors that are taped off to the aspect ratio they expect
    the film/tv show to be viewed in. By covering the monitor with tape,
    they can't see what would be seen in an open matte transfers.

    Unfortunately, this taping of monitors can be a very bad thing. Just
    last week I was on set for a new HD network TV show, and the director
    had his monitor taped off to show the 4:3 extract. He wasn't viewing
    the scene in the HD 16x9 framing that will be the master which is used
    for the next 10-20 years of broadcast and syndication.
    Mark Spatny, Aug 8, 2005
    #9
  10. lasitter

    Jeff Rife Guest

    jayembee () wrote in alt.video.dvd:
    > > Other than normal slight differences in projection equipment, this doesn't
    > > happen.

    >
    > It's probably happened a lot in the case of European films that are composed for
    > 1.66:1 and matted in American theaters at 1.85:1.


    True, but this is well-known by European filmmakers, so if they are aiming
    for a US audience, the picture isn't all that much a 1.66:1 film.

    --
    Jeff Rife | "Five thousand dollars, huh? I'll bet we could
    | afford that if we pooled our money together...
    | bought a gun...robbed a bank...."
    | -- Drew Carey
    Jeff Rife, Aug 8, 2005
    #10
  11. lasitter

    Jeff Rife Guest

    Stan () wrote in alt.video.dvd:
    > > A 1.85:1 movie is sent to theaters with the full film frame visible,
    > > and they matte in the projector.

    >
    > This is only true some of the time and you can't even depend on it holding
    > true scene-to-scene within a reel. (I work in a post-production lab).


    Are you saying some films are sent to theaters with hard mattes? In that
    case, isn't the visible part what the production people actively chose,
    so it really isn't an issue.

    Now, if they are constantly screwing up and misframing when they do this,
    then I could call it a problem, but since there is no solution for viewer
    (other than to be on the set while the movie is made), it's also not a big
    deal.

    --
    Jeff Rife |
    | http://www.nabs.net/Cartoons/RhymesWithOrange/CatBed.jpg
    Jeff Rife, Aug 8, 2005
    #11
  12. lasitter

    Stan Guest

    Jeff Rife <> wrote in
    news::

    > Stan () wrote in alt.video.dvd:
    >> > A 1.85:1 movie is sent to theaters with the full film frame
    >> > visible, and they matte in the projector.

    >>
    >> This is only true some of the time and you can't even depend on it
    >> holding true scene-to-scene within a reel. (I work in a
    >> post-production lab).

    >
    > Are you saying some films are sent to theaters with hard mattes?

    snip

    Yes.
    Stan, Aug 9, 2005
    #12
  13. lasitter

    Jeff Rife Guest

    Stan () wrote in alt.video.dvd:
    > > Are you saying some films are sent to theaters with hard mattes?

    >
    > Yes.


    So, then, if it's screwed up at the source, there's nothing that a viewer
    could do about it.

    --
    Jeff Rife |
    | http://www.nabs.net/Cartoons/Dilbert/TechBigot.gif
    Jeff Rife, Aug 9, 2005
    #13
  14. lasitter

    lasitter Guest

    > You'd be surprised to know how many directors view their work
    > through playback monitors that are taped off to the aspect ratio
    > they expect the film/tv show to be viewed in. By covering the
    > monitor with tape, they can't see what would be seen in an open
    > matte transfers.


    Wow! Thank you. Not being anywhere close to show biz, I had no
    clue that this was a common practice.

    > Unfortunately, this taping of monitors can be a very bad thing.
    > Just last week I was on set for a new HD network TV show, and the
    > director had his monitor taped off to show the 4:3 extract. He
    > wasn't viewing the scene in the HD 16x9 framing that will be the
    > master which is used for the next 10-20 years of broadcast and
    > syndication.


    This confirms my suspicion that there is no one single truth in
    all of this about knowing if your viewing experience is a bit
    like that of Miss Little Red Riding Hood: Too big, too small, or
    just right ...
    lasitter, Aug 9, 2005
    #14
  15. lasitter

    lasitter Guest

    >> What if the film was shot open matte and then matted
    >> differently for showing in different theatres?


    > Other than normal slight differences in projection equipment,
    > this doesn't happen.


    Apparently some theatres feel free to take liberties, which is what
    prompted my question ...

    http://tinyurl.com/atv57

    (Vern Dias)

    "By the way, theatres can opt to show 1.85 flat at 2:1 flat and to
    show 2.35 anamorphic at 2:1 anamorphic. Thus the picture size
    stays the same with a little bit cropped from the top and bottom
    for flat and a little bit cropped from the sides for anamorphic.

    "I am a projectionist and I have seen it done.

    > A 2.35:1 movie is sent to theaters with the full film frame
    > containing an anamorphic version of the movie ...


    "About two thirds of widescreen movies are filmed at 1.85 (flat) aspect
    ratio or less." ... DVD FAQ.

    I was attempting to address my question to this set of films, as
    opposed to the anamorphic scope films. I know that there's nothing
    extra in the frame of films shot with an anamorphic lens, since the
    goal there is to use the whole available negative frame.

    > If people did an ounce of research into the actual filmmaking
    > process, we would never get this question posted again. Instead,
    > we have to see it for the 257,196th time in the newsgroup.


    The internet is a great source of information, and an even better
    source of mis-information. I've been wading thru piles of material and
    hundreds if not thousands of posts in an effort to understand the
    processes by which images are captured on film, reproduced on screen,
    and transferred to other video formats, as well as the marketing
    decisions by studios and everyday practices by projectionists and
    movie chains that often pervert what the original filmmaker wanted me
    to see.

    If someone else has asked these questions in exactly the same way here
    earlier, then I'm sorry for being redundant, but I used Google
    extensively before posting and did not find the sort of cohesive,
    consensus answers that I had hoped to find.

    Cheers.
    lasitter, Aug 9, 2005
    #15
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