David Knight - 4th Dec 2007

Talk about a hard act to follow. Doing a video for a cover of Massive Attack's Teardrop invites all kinds of comparisons with one of the iconic videos of forever.

Perhaps not surprisingly Diamond Dogs' Phil and Olly have steered well clear of animatronic foetuses (foeti) for Newton Faulkner's new version. They've created their own little wonder instead: there's Newton plucking his soft-stringed guitar, and there he is again, and again...

It's a one-shot affair, but the really clever thing about this video is that it defies gravity. In fact it was shot with a rotating moco camera rig on a rotating set - it was rotated 90 degrees in between takes so that the ceiling and walls temporarily became a floor. The whole thing required 20 plates of motion control.

To maximise the budget and schedule, Phil and Olly worked with a team at Prime Focus London (PFL) from an early stage: the camera moves were pre-visualised in 3D by Bryan Servante using Maya. After the shoot, CADS winning colourist George K graded the footage with a warm glow and then had to identically match-grade the remaining 19 plates whilst creating second passes. It wasn't an easy task - lighting came from nothing but in-situ lamps.
Then Dan Lorenzini used Flame to seamlessly join the twenty plates and add details that help turn the set into a wintry, moonlit limbo-world. These extra touches included tracking additional mirror reflections from one take to another, atmospheric light flares, steam, snow and enhancing Newton's cold breath.

David Knight - 4th Dec 2007

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