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Flickering Souls Set Alight

Project details

Short Film | 2019

PLOT: Greece, 2017. The lack of financial support of Aris (who suffers from Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis / ALS) urges his wife Persephone to get confronted with human existential limits. “How many years does it really take to finally reach «home»?”

WHY 1 : 1 ?

The first idea came though some visual references that Iakovos brought on the table through his 2-years research in houses of actual patients (ALS). We quickly realised that choosing such a ratio could serve the story on an unimaginable level…

…The film needed to feel claustrophobic as the characters are trapped inside a world ready to collapse. A contracted universe.  Choosing a wider aspect ratio would not help us achieve our visual story telling goals and wouldn’t have served the story as greatly as the 1:1…

Getting to 1 : 1 through anamorphic

I felt the need to include as much information as possible in each frame, yet preserving the square aspect ratio.
As each scene was a single shot, we needed to capture nothing less than what the story required so, cropping (left and right) was not an option, especially on a tight location. We had to get to 1:1 without loosing any horizontal pixel of the sensor. The canvas needed to get enlarged vertically rather than get shrinked horizontally.
And that’s where the idea of using anamorphic lenses crossed my mind.

THEORY / IDEA: What would happen if, p.e. on a Full HD (16:9) sensor we used anamorphic (2x) lenses vertically? It would create an image 1920 x (1080×2) which – after the respectively vertical desqueeze – would give us a usable 1920 x 2160 which is very close to the perfect square we are aiming for (1920 – 1920). Yes, it would need to be cropped (top and bottom) but it would offer us the maximum use of the sensor (and loosing no horizontal pixel)!

Next step -> Camera Tests!
Right from the very first camera test we realized that the idea was working perfectly giving us, at the same time, some interesting artifacts coming from the unusual use of the anamorphic lenses.
During the next sessions at Arctos Films S.A. we determined the look (choosing the Cooke Anamorphic/i lenses), the cinematography process while, with the great help of 1st A/C Vagelis Tzifakis and programmer Dimitris Makrygiannis, trying our best to overcome technical challenges, the biggest of which being live monitoring on set (as there is no ordinary camera or monitor function for vertical desqueeze). Just a few days prior to the beginning of the principal photography Dimitris managed to finish up our final software by keeping the delay to it’s minimum!

More information on the technical aspects will be released soon.

Credits

CAST:
Ioanna Tsirigkouli, Yannis Kokiasmenos, Eliza Skolidi and Errikos Litsis

CREW:
Written and Directed by: Iakovos Panagopoulos
Produced by: Iakovos Panagopoulos, Petros Antoniadis, Arctos Films S.A and Direct Productions
Co-Produced by: Matchframe, Movie Lights and Protasis Productions
Executive Producer: Argiris Zachos
Story Editor: Konstantinos Karakostas

Cinematographer: Petros Antoniadis
Production Designer: Christos Simeonides
Costume Designer: Lina Stavropoulou
Edited by: Angelos Michalopoulos
Music by: Deadfile

Production Manager: Argiris Zachos
Assistant Director: Konstantinos Karakostas
Assistant Production Manager: Elena Georgiadou
Make up / Hair Stylist: Evangelos Kalogiantsidis
Special Effects Artists: Giorgos Alahouzos, Roulis Alahouzos
Sound: Christos Sakelariou

Colorist: Dimitris Karteris
VFX Compositor: Leonid Kashtalian

1st Camera Assistant: Vagelis Tzifakis
2nd Camera Assistant: Stella Louiza Athanasopoulou
Gaffer: Vagelis Roussis
Best Boy (Electric): Markos Kouko
Electrician: Theodore Koutselis
Key Grip: Panagiotis Tsagkaroulis
Grip: Aris Mpoumparas
Video Assist. / Programmer: Dimitris Makrygiannis
Construction: Alexis Konsta
Set Photographer: Joanna Tsakalou
Set Production Assistant: Marios Beka
Runner: Thanos Mpikakis
Catering: Aliki Skalidi 

Technical Info

Color
Duration: 29min.
Aspect Ratio: 1:1
Shot on: Arri Alexa Mini | Cooke Anamorphic/i Lenses (vertical to the sensor)
Greece, 2018

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