Drawing on expertise from our Digital Cinema Camera engineers, Cinematography Pro on your Xperia gives you all the tools you need for studio-quality film making. From Look colour management pre-sets to 21:9 movie recording, 4K HDR in 24, 25, 30, 60 and 120fps, and Intelligent wind filter, it’s your chance to get creative and record films that the pros would be proud of.
Watch Stardust Children, a short film by acclaimed director Eiji Uchida.
Born in Rio de Janeiro, Eiji Uchida began his career as a reporter before turning his talents to writing and directing films in 2005. Since then, he has enjoyed widespread success. In 2016, his film “Lowlife Love” was a smash hit at Teatro in Shinjuku and screened at over 30 film festivals worldwide. In 2019, he wrote and directed the Tokyo TV drama “I Turn”, along with two episodes of the hit Netflix show “The Naked Director”. And in 2021, he won the Best Screenplay, Best Director, and Best Film Awards at the 44th Japan Academy Film Prize for his film “Midnight Swan”.
Director Eiji Uchida offers his thoughts on filming with Xperia:
If you know what you’re shooting, for me it’s the same with a VENICE (Sony’s VENICE CineAlta digital cinema camera) or an Xperia. Xperia has the potential to make your work better.
The last thing I wanted to do was make a film with a home video feel, just because it was a smartphone. The 24fps video frame rate makes a huge difference. In the past I worked so hard to get the “film look”. Cameras that can shoot in a film look are so expensive. Especially because I started in indie films, if I could shoot in a film look on my smartphone that would be so great.
TV has a 16:9 aspect ratio. And even when it was 4:3, I always loved and wanted to make movies, and shoot in movie aspect, but couldn’t. We tried putting black bars on the top and bottom of the screen, trying hard to make something that felt "like a movie". Honestly, I give kudos to Sony for installing a wide screen that you only see in theatres.
I like the idea of making a particular colour stand out. For this film it was red and blue. We’d been talking about doing some sort of final touches with colour grading. Basically, when filming I shoot in a way that can roll either way. In this film I created an atmosphere by making certain colours stand out.
The high-speed mode is great. The fall at the last scene is shot in high speed and slowed down. We used to have a lot of trouble with high-speed filming. So I was like, “You can shoot slow motion on a smartphone?!”. And it’s proper high speed. I wondered how they did that.
Note: this video does not contain audio.
I think there are many directors who would like to film with a smartphone and see how it’s just as fun, myself included. I’ve seen the footage on set and the finished film. My honest feeling was, “Oh, you can shoot a film on Xperia.”
If I was young and making indie films today it would be so cool. Because we really struggled with slow motion and aspect ratio to get that “film look”. I envy the fact that you can do that on a smartphone – I mean you could actually shoot a feature film on this.
Sony not only provides the technology for aspiring cinematographers to create professional quality film and video but also offers them opportunities to showcase their work.
As a creative entertainment company with a solid foundation of technology, Sony is proud to support Short Shorts Film Festival & Asia 2021. Accredited by the Academy Awards®, Short Shorts is one of the largest international short film festivals in Asia. It enables the next generation of creators both to gain exposure and to help define the film culture of the future.
Watch Eyes by Anonymouz, a music video shot entirely on Xperia by pro director Kanji Suto. An enigmatic singer-songwriter, Anonymouz initially established herself on the Japanese YouTube scene before gaining attention worldwide. This music video not only showcases her natural vocal talents but also demonstrates the amazing results that can be achieved with the latest Xperia smartphones.
Originally a computer graphic and graphic designer, Kanji Suto learnt his craft working on music videos and commercials under the expert eye of film director Shuichi Tan. Now an independent director, his expertise covers a wide variety of techniques including live action, computer graphics, and virtual reality. His work has been recognised with a number of awards including the 2015 Space Shower TV Music Video Awards and The One Show 2017 / Moving Image Craft / Visual Innovation.
From the moment of shooting, I could tell how stunning it is. The smartphone has the benefit of size – its smallness. I wanted to take advantage of this. We could shoot from below or position it where impossible before. It was exciting to try out new ideas for this. I really felt that this camera could expand the range of work for video shooting.
It’s truly innovative that the mobile device itself uses CinemaScope (21:9 display ratio). The preview was convenient to use and I was amazed at how stunning it was. I can check what I just shot within the same UI. Being able to check the video quality immediately is a huge deal. This shoot was outside on a sunny day. If we used the brightest setting when checking under the sun, we could see all the details clearly. That was helpful. This display is really beautiful.
We had scenes with the goldfish singing and conversing. This was shot for an extended time with high-speed slow motion, adding variables or trimming while editing. We wanted to use slow motion to make the goldfish look like it is talking and singing. High speed shot at 120fps turned out very smooth and clear.
Professional camera equipment can be set in great detail – so the UI can be complex. But Xperia is made for the general population so it can be operated intuitively, which is nice. At the same time, it’s easy for a professional. It’s the same UI as a regular camera and really simple to use.
When touching up the tones after shooting, the colour range is kept and the VENICE CS gives it a film-like quality instantly, looking nothing like a tasteless video. I was amazed.
Venice Colour Settings (CS) are the default colour management pre-sets in Cinematography Pro, known as “LOOK” settings. They give you smooth colour gradation, a soft low contrast tone curve and 10-bit settings, suitable for cinema and drama productions. These are based on the s709 Look settings, found on our CineAlta VENICE camera.
When we want to move a camera, it requires a crane or placing it on a rail called a dolly. With Xperia, we can simply shoot like this. I used a small gimbal for some slight movement. Being able to shoot with such high quality saved a lot of time. That was fantastic. And we attached a macro lens bought at a 100-yen shop for a close-up of the goldfish and the sparkling marbles. That created an interesting effect.
The base is definitely a smartphone, so with this small body that everyone carries we can do a shoot the same way everyone can. If someone is interested in making video, they can easily shoot with professional quality. I found it to be a very attractive camera.
Eiji Uchida and Kanji Suto aren’t alone – a growing number of acclaimed professional video and film makers are waking up to the possibilities of shooting with Xperia, as you’ll see in the short films below.
A short film shot on Xperia
Immerse your senses in TASTE, a short film by Shep Films, made in collaboration with Sony Innovation Studios.
A short film shot on Xperia
Pro cinematographer Jeff Berlin put the Xperia 5 II through its paces to create this mesmerising dance-themed short.
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