INTERVIEW: Gale Tattersall, Director of Photography on ‘House’ using the Canon 5D

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The TV show 'House' became the first prime time network show to be shot on the revolutionary HD DSLR Canon 5D camera.

After cinematographer Gale Tattersall read the script for this season's finale of House, he knew he'd have to overcome some unique challenges in his approach to shooting. Much of the drama of the episode, entitled "Help Me," takes place in a small crawlspace beneath a collapsed building, and the feel of the action needed to enhance the sense of the title character's internal isolation from the world around him.

Gale Tattersall

Turns out the solution came in the form of the Canon EOS 5D Mark II DSLR. Its sensor's large image area (that of an 8-perf 35mm still camera or a VistaVision frame) automatically required longer lenses, hence narrow depth of field to isolate subjects from their out-of-focus surroundings. The tiny footprint of the camera allowed more natural shooting in tight spaces. Its high ISO settings allowed shooting in the crawlspace set with minimal lighting.

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Digital Cinema, Filmmaking, TV Shows


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