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Back Screen Projection

UPIN received a commission from The Daily Mail around 1965 to produce a back screen projection to be shot for them to use with a live television commercial.  The shot required was of their own newsroom.

The finished article was to show a man reading the commercial message apparently in the Daily Mail newsroom. For the shot to look real, it was necessary to, as near as possible, match the lenses.  The television studio camera would have a lens that bore no correlation to a thirty-five millimetre film camera lens.

What I had to do was to estimate which film camera lens would give a picture closest to that of the television cameras 10mm wide-angle lens.

I got a very close match.  I think it was a 35mm lens we used in the camera.

I then hired a studio director of photography from Shepperton.  He lit the huge newsroom so that it would match the television studio lighting and, at the same time, provide a full depth of focus.  The huge newsroom had support columns in two rows going from front to back.  The DofP placed lamps behind these columns so as to equally light the scene  up to the farthest point from the camera.

The final result was amazing.  People thought that the man doing the commercial was actually in the Daily Mail newsroom.

It was only a small job, but it was the sort of job that gave a great deal of satisfaction.

These days it would be quite easy with the use of computers, especially as the camera for the newsroom and that of the reader would be the same.

© Terence Gallacher and, 2013.  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Terence Gallacher and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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