Thursday, November 19, 2020

Todd Vaziri on the Talking Bay 94 Podcast

It was my pleasure to be the guest on Talking Bay 94, a terrific Star Wars podcast. 

Industrial Light & Magic digital artist and compositing supervisor Todd Vaziri has worked on every Star Wars movie since 2002, beginning with Attack of the Clones.

Whether for the prequels (including the final duel on Mustafar), the sequels (figuring out the feel of a modern Star Wars movie), the spin-offs (helping to bring Tarkin and the Kessel Run to life), theme park rides (including Star Tours and Rise of the Resistance), or Stephen Colbert’s Green Screen Challenge, Mr. Vaziri’s passion for movie-making is evident in his every shot, and in his every answer on this episode, I’ve wanted him to be a guest on Talking Bay 94 for such a long time, and man, it was so worth the wait. Make sure you are following him on Twitter: @tvaziri … he is truly one of the best people to follow, period, on that app.

Talking Bay 94

Sunday, November 15, 2020

Looking at a Shot from "Bullitt"

Trying something new. I thought I'd attempt to discuss a single weird shot in the 1968 classic film, "Bullitt". I wrote this text and made the video for Twitter (hence the 2 minutes and 20 second video limit, and you can read the original thread here.

Here's a quick video analysis of a shot in Steve McQueen's "Bullitt" (1968).

view on YouTube

An example of a similar phenomenon - in this sequence from "The Blues Brothers" (1980), the crash cam gets hit by the car, and the editors chose to keep this chaotic, potentially fourth-wall-breaking moment in the cut.

Here's the shot I'm referring to, isolated:

Update! @MarkMcKenny1 spotted these incredible videos. First, an old YouTube clip of the sequence. The original shot has a ton of light leaks and damage and a black frame! This means at some point (for DVD?), WB cleaned up the damage and also removed the black frame.

And this, a clip from @RealEOC, shows off the film damage and additional light leaks. It cuts directly to behind-the-scenes footage of the shot, and to say that the movie camera got damaged is putting it lightly. This is how catastrophic damage to a film camera can cause light leaks. That rig got completely taken out!

Monday, November 02, 2020

"How I Letterboxd" featuring Todd Vaziri

I recently chatted with Jack Moulton at Letterboxd about how I use the Letterbox app, and we went deep into how we look at movies throughout our lives. This was an especially fun interview, and I hope you like it.

How I Letterboxd: Todd Vaziri,

Saturday, January 25, 2020

Oscar Pool Ballot, 92nd Academy Awards

It's time for the Awesomest Oscar Pool Ballot In The History Of Oscar Pool Ballots.

Every year I create a special ballot based on a typical Academy Awards printable ballot -- but on my ballot, each category has a different point value. The highest valued category is "Best Picture," while the mainstream films' categories are valued at two points. The non-mainstream categories (like the documentary and short film categories) are valued at one point.

This way, in a tight race for the winner of the pool, the winner most likely would not be determined by the non-mainstream films (in other words, blind guesses).

Download the ballot here for the 92nd Academy Awards and use it at your Oscar party.

And if you're wondering why Tom Cruise is on my ballot... he's been on every one of my Oscar ballots. Because he's soooooooooo cool.