John Toll, ASC, shoots IRON MAN 3
John Toll, ASC recently turned his considerable talents to the cinematography of IRON MAN 3, Marvel Entertainment’s latest installment of the odyssey of the brash, brilliant industrialist Tony Stark. Robert Downey, Jr. returned in the title role and Shane Black directed. The movie’s box office take was the second highest opening ever for a film. For Toll, the project was memorable not least because it was his first feature film shot on digital cameras.
“I’m basically a film guy,” says Toll, an Oscar winner for BRAVEHEART and LEGENDS OF THE FALL. “I love film, but I believe there are reasons to use digital cameras on certain projects.”
After testing, Toll chose to capture with the ARRI ALEXA Studio camera with Codex Recorders capturing images in ARRIRAW format.
“I was very interested in doing a movie with digital cameras, and exploring the whole medium,” he says. “IRON MAN 3 was a good opportunity for me because I had the resources to do a lot of testing and to really explore how digital cameras work. I think part of the whole attraction of the digital world is convenience, especially for big visual effects movies. I thought it made sense for this project. We were recording the 14 stops of range that the ALEXA claims. If we needed to access that amount of information down the road, for visual effects and in the DI, then we could. That additional information was the reason we chose to go with the Codex workflow and ARRIRAW.”
Parts of the project were shot under difficult conditions on North Carolina locations that alternated between scorching heat and pouring rain. Digital Imaging Technician (DIT) Ryan Nguyen helped make the process seamless for Toll. “I used the Technicolor DP Lights system to create CDLs for all the shots, ” says Nguyen. “Once John was introduced to what can be done on set, he was really into it. He saw what a great tool it could be, and often he would make tweaks in lighting or exposure based on what he saw on the monitor.”
via ARRI Group: News.