MELVILLE, N.Y., May 14, 2014 – Canon U.S.A. Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, is proud to announce that three shows that premiered in spring 2014 chose Canon Cinema EOS Digital cameras and lenses to capture their compelling stories. The three series, airing on CNN/U.S., include CHICAGOLAND, from Executive Producers (EP) Robert Redford and Laura Michalchyshyn and the award-winning Brick City Television, LLC (BCTV) filmmaking team Marc Levin and Mark Benjamin, DEATH ROW STORIES, from Academy Award-winning Executive Producers Alex Gibney and Robert Redford, and MORGAN SPURLOCK: INSIDE MAN, from Oscar-nominated filmmaker Morgan Spurlock. These television series were developed in 2013 to produce unscripted, informative, and entertaining non-fiction programming for the cable television news channel. Each turned to Canon when making their eight, one-hour long episodes.
“Canon is honored to be the camera of choice for these three television series,” said Yuichi Ishizuka, president and COO, Canon U.S.A. “Our Cinema EOS Digital cameras have been designed for use in productions just like these and to be chosen for three docu-series on one network is quite humbling.”
When cinematographer Daniel B. Levin was preparing for CHICAGOLAND – a series that tells the story of its namesake city as it confronts an education system in turmoil and public safety crisis – he turned to the Canon EOS C300 Digital Cinema camera in order to fulfill his need for a rugged, ergonomic, compact camera, that would produce a cinematic image to meet the high standards of the production team. “We wanted to weave beauty, texture, and the city in with doc-verite, real, gritty, run-and-gun filmmaking,” said Levin. “The remarkable thing about the C300 camera is you can build it as big as you want, or strip it down as small as you want.”
The flexibility of the Canon EOS C300 Digital Cinema camera system made it possible for Levin to follow Chicago’s policymakers, community leaders, and residents through the various elements and public locations like Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s office at City Hall as his team works to improve the metropolis’ social policy, education, and public safety.
To keep his rig light and his focus sharp, Levin paired the Canon EOS C300 Digital Cinema camera with a set of Canon EF L-series lenses, including the EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM, EF 50mm f/1.2L USM, and the EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM. “If you have these lenses – which could all fit in a backpack – you’re basically good to do anything,” concluded Levin.
Airing on eight successive Thursday evenings, CHICAGOLAND began March 6, 2014 at 10:00pm ET/PT.
Academy Award-winning directors Alex Gibney and Robert Redford teamed up to create DEATH ROW STORIES, a series that unravels a different capital murder case per episode, calling into question the myriad of beliefs about the death penalty and the American justice system. Directed by Gibney, narrated by Academy Award-winning actress Susan Sarandon, and executive produced by Sundance Productions’ Robert Redford and Laura Michalchyshyn, and Jigsaw Productions’ Alex Gibney, Dave Snyder, Stacey Offman, and Brad Hebert, DEATH ROW STORIESrelies on powerful interviews and chilling recreations to explore the issues surrounding capital punishment.
Cinematographer Antonio Rossi chose the Canon EOS C500 4K Digital Cinema camera and the EOS 5D Mark III Digital SLR camera to capture the look he wanted for the series. “We are dealing with extremely dramatic, life and death subject matter, and I try to express that drama in my camera work. So we try to make our interviews noir-ish and saturated, while conveying the gravity of the events portrayed. The EOS C500 camera beautifully allowed me to achieve the look I desired,” said Rossi.
To balance a high-quality picture with a simple workflow, Rossi chose to record a 1920 x 1080 HD image from the EOS C500 camera to a Sound Devices PIX 240i portable video recorder. He relied on an EOS 5D Mark III as his second camera and mounted Canon Cinema lenses and EF lenses interchangeably between the two. Using a Canon Cinema CN-E30-105mm T2.8 L S lens for all interview segments, his lens package also included an EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM, Cinema Primes CN-E24mm T1.5 L F, CN-E50mm T1.3 L F, and CN-E85mm T1.3 F L, as well as L-series EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM, EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM, and EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM lenses.
Rossi sums up his experience using Canon on DEATH ROW STORIES by noting, “The EOS C500 and the EOS 5D [Mark III] cameras work really well together as a system. And, you have the ability to use a range of lenses and shoot in a lot of different kinds of situations.”
The first episode of DEATH ROW STORIES debuted on Sunday, March 9, 2014 at 9:00pm ET/PT. A summer season will air beginning Sunday, July 13, 2014.
CNN’s popular original series MORGAN SPURLOCK: INSIDE MAN and its charismatic producer, director, and host will return to the airwaves this spring for a second season. The show, which clocked in as the network’s third most-watched program in 2013, explores topical subjects as Spurlock immerses himself in the issue at hand to provide a personal perspective. “Celebrity,” “The Future,” and “Income Disparity” are just a few of the themes MORGAN SPURLOCK: INSIDE MANwill tackle during its sophomore season. And while the topics of the show are varied, the producers’ emphasis on image quality is unchanging.
“We want the show to feel cinematic, large in scope, but at the same time, want it to feel real,” said Jeremy Chilnick, Executive Producer of the series and Head of Production at Spurlock’s Warrior Poets production company. “The authenticity of what you hope your audience feels is as important as making sure that it looks beautiful.”
In order to deliver the aesthetic and realism required for the show, cinematographer David Vlasits relied on the Canon EOS C300 Digital Cinema camera, as well as two Canon EOS 5D Mark III Digital SLR cameras, for both seasons one and two. While the EOS 5D Mark III Digital SLR served as his go-to camera for interior car shots, Vlasits chose the Canon EOS C300 Digital Cinema camera for day-to-day production because of its low-light capabilities, small profile, dual CF card slots, and long battery life.
The camera’s ergonomics were also a major benefit to Vlasits. “From an operating standpoint, I want a form factor that’s comfortable and balanced on my shoulder that can just as easily be put placed on a tripod when needed,” Vlasits said.
Season two of MORGAN SPURLOCK: INSIDE MAN premiered on Sunday, April 13, 2014 at 10:00pm ET/PT.
Daniel B. Levin, Antonio Rossi, David Vlasits, and Jeremy Chilnick discussed the lengths they go to capture their compelling stories and why they rely on Canon Cinema EOS systems at the “Canon Spotlight: CNN Original Series” panel at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival. These testimonials, along with additional behind-the-scenes videos can be found at the Canon Professional’s Vimeo page at https://vimeo.com/canonpro.
For more information about Canon Cinema EOS cameras and lenses, please visit the Canon U.S.A. website at http://cinemaeos.usa.canon.com/