Stanley Kubrick borrowed some NASA technology to capture Barry Lyndon’s natural look

The new challenge, of course, is mounting such a lens on a conventional 35mm film camera. The lens in question is, as one might imagine, much larger than the lenses commonly used for film production and the light hitting the film strip requires adjustment. To get lenses close to the actual range of motion film, the cameras had to be re-engineered, and a fundamentally new type of rotating shutter had to be invented from scratch. Once that camera was built, however, capturing “Barry Lyndon” became easy. Indeed, a lot of the old technical problems have been eliminated, as Kubrick explains:

“There’s still a lot of work to be done with it and the camera to make it usable. However, the rear element of the lens has to be 2.5mm above the film plane, which requires special modifications for with the rotating camera shutter. . But with this lens it is now possible to shoot in dimly lit conditions that are hard to read.For the daytime interior scene, we used real daylight from the door. window or simulate daylight with bank lights outside the window and diffuse them with tracing paper on the glass.”

With nothing but natural light shining into the camera and only diffused lights coming in through the windows, Kubrick will never have to worry about accidentally shooting directly at the light source. With such a camera, lens flare would look something like an actual human eye’s iris correction, and the camera would never seem to be artificially exploding.

The room may have been dim enough to affect reading, but the picture in the movie is now clearer than ever. Stanley Kubrick borrowed some NASA technology to capture Barry Lyndon’s natural look

Fry Electronics Team

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