Photographer | Cinematographer

Shop Talk

Between the Perfs

Excerpt of an article written for No Film School by Robert Hardy 

If you’ve ever listened to or read interviews with older cinematographers, you’ve almost undoubtedly heard them say something along the lines of, “we decided to shoot 3-perf 35mm, 5219 500T for the interiors and 50D for the daytime exteriors.” To cinematographers only familiar with digital, this is kind of like an alien language. Luckily, it’s relatively easy to understand. While the 5219 refers to the specific stock, the 500T and 50D numbers refer to the sensitivity and color balance of the individual stock. Think of those as the equivalent to ISO and white balance. The above stocks are equivalent to a tungsten white balance at 500 ISO and a daylight white balance at 50 ISO. Not so difficult to understand, right?

But what the hell is 3-perf 35mm? And how is it different from 4-perf 35mm or 2-perf 35mm?

Infographic by The Brim 

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