Definition February 2024 - Web


of – in addition to the horror elements,” he recalls. “It was a bit daunting going into a franchise like that, but I felt more confident because I’d worked with the directors previously. I trusted them and knew they would do a great job, but there were certainly big shoes to fill.” A NEW VISUAL LANGUAGE He allowed himself just one watch of the previous Scream movies to familiarise himself with the story and characters – then set about focusing on the new plot and how best to bring it to life. One element of the originals both Jutkiewicz and the directors loved was how effectively they build tension – all the more impressive in scenes that, uniquely for a horror picture, often take place in daylight or well-lit spaces. “The great thing about those films is the blocking and camera movement, especially in the first Scream ,” enthuses Jutkiewicz. “It looks great, but it’s not dark and scary in the way we often imagine horror being. That’s a testament to the direction and camera work making it feel tense and suspenseful without it being visually dark; that was definitely something I wanted to take forward.” Scream (2022) was the first to be shot digitally, using an ARRI ALEXA Mini and continuing the series’ preference for anamorphic lenses. Panavision G Series optics were selected, with the manufacturer detuning the lenses WE FELT LIKE IT WAS TIME TO LOOK AT THE NEXT FILM with open eyes AND MAKE DECISIONS from scratch ”

GHOST TRAIN A memorable set piece in Scream VI shows Ghostface stalking his victims in a subway car packed with costumed Halloween revellers. Presenting so many logistical challenges that it almost had to be cut completely, this sequence hogged focus in the prep stages, causing plenty of head scratching over how to recreate an authentic-looking, moving subway train from their principal photography location in Canada. “We talked about LED screens, we even discussed shipping in a subway car and putting it on a stage – both of which were way too expensive. Plus, the Montreal metro system doesn’t look anything like the New York subway, so that was off the table,” Jutkiewicz shares. Eventually, they tasked the art department with recreating the train and platform from scratch, which had the benefit of allowing them to build their lighting into the car. “I’m from New York originally and that lighting had to feel right,” insists Jutkiewicz. “All of the lighting inside the car was installed by my amazing team in Montreal and controlled by a dimmer board so it could flicker on cue: I could watch the action and use my walkie- talkie to signal exactly when the lights come on and for how long – just an amazing level of control to have. “And then for the movement – outside the windows – we have three 80ft rows of lights on each side of the car, one above

slightly to lend a more vintage and expressive look. “We decided that using the anamorphics was a nice way to visually continue that aesthetic into the new film. It’s fairly subtle; most people wouldn’t know or care, but it was right for what we were doing and our story. It connected us to the originals,” explains Jutkiewicz. When it came to Scream VI , the setting relocated from sleepy Woodsboro to the hustle and bustle of New York City (or more often Montreal standing in for the Big Apple), and the visual language evolved accordingly, including a shift to spherical lenses for the first time. “We felt like it was time to look at the next film with open eyes and make decisions from scratch. We used the ALEXA Mini again but switched to Cooke 5/i prime lenses. The directors had loved the Panavision anamorphics and were keen to use them again, but I felt the setting was so different than what had come before that it would be interesting to try different lenses. “I love anamorphic lenses, but they look like a movie. They render things so beautifully but it’s a different way to how we perceive it; there’s a level of artifice. Spherical lenses are truer to how your eye sees it. They don’t have as many of those aberrations the anamorphics have. I felt the spherical lenses put you into the space and worked well for the grittier, urban environment.”



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