Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross will use period-authentic instrumentation for their "Mank" score

They’ll avoid many of their favorite toys for David Fincher’s next movie, which is set in the Forties.

Revolver Staff
December 23, 2019
Revolver

Director David Fincher — who first dragged Reznor and Ross into the film-scoring game by enlisting them for 2010’s The Social Network — is currently shooting the film Mank, a biopic about Herman J. Mankiewicz, the screenwriter of Orson Welles‘ Citizen Kane, played by Gary Oldman. As such, the movie is set in 1940. “We’re not gonna be using the modular synthesizer on that one,” Reznor revealed. “We think we’re gonna be period authentic, so it just creates a new set of challenges.”

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Nine Inch Nails: 9 Things We Learned from Our Visit to Trent Reznor’s Studio

Order the Dec/Jan Issue of Revolver, Featuring Nine Inch Nails

Netflix Helps Drive the Creative Vision with High-Dynamic-Range Content

Jay Holben
December 22, 2019
American Cinematographer

Some might consider high-dynamic-range (HDR) displays a technology of the future, but the reality is it’s here now and very much a contemporary delivery format. At the forefront of this delivery is Netflix, the streaming and production giant, which reports that roughly a quarter of the devices used to access its service monthly — more than 165 million — are configured for HDR. As a result, Netflix is making a concerted effort to provide HDR content and currently has more than 1,000 hours of such programming available.

One of these titles is David Fincher’s gritty, period procedural Mindhunter, which earned Christopher Probst, ASC an ASC Award nomination for its pilot in 2017. The series is photographed by Erik Messerschmidt, who notes that production incorporated HDR into the second season. “With Mindhunter, we try to be very subtle with the photography,” says Messerschmidt. “The story and themes of the show are complex and nuanced, so it’s really important that the photography never draws attention to itself. HDR helps because it enables me to be very subtle in my use of color and contrast, particularly in the toe of the exposure. Everyone likes to talk about the bright whites in HDR, but I think perhaps the added range in the shadows is more interesting and more important than added range in the highlights.

“I think cinematographers have always advocated for a better experience for the audience, whether it’s fast film stocks with tighter grain, better projection technology, or higher quality digital-capture and display technologies,” he continues. “HDR is just another step in that direction. Standard-dynamic-range video distribution can only show a narrow exposure band of the modern digital sensor’s dynamic range. The opportunity to use more of the sensor’s range when we want to is a very exciting development.”

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Fight Club. How (Not) To Become A Space Monkey

Tom van der Linden
Like Stories of Old (YouTube)

Movies have always had a strong impact on me, they affect the way I look at the world and help make me a better person. With this channel I want to explore this boundary between film analysis and life lessons, because I believe that movies, just like the stories of old, contain valuable lessons and insights, and to better understand them is to better understand life.

In this video essay on Fight Club, I examine how charismatic leaders like Tyler Durden turn men into Space Monkeys.

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Sources:
Ernest Becker – The Denial of Death
Like Stories of Old – Complete Reading List

Featuring:
‘Where Is My Mind’ cover by Alex Voulgaris. Follow Alex on Instagram.
‘Where Is My Mind’ cover by Gattobus
Additional Music:
Skyler Lawson – Eclater
Luke Atencio – Projections
Additional music licensed from Musicbed

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With the support of Creative Europe – MEDIA Programme of the European Union.

When Only the "Right" Kind of Microphone Will Do

This ‘Mindhunter’ promo needed something very, very specific. Territory studio delivered.

Ian Failes
December 3, 2019
Befores & Afters

If you’ve watched David Fincher’s Mindhunter series about the development of the FBI’s Behavioural Science Unit from the late 1970’s through to 1980s, then you’ll already know there’s a certain kind of meticulousness to the Netflix show in each episode.

Well, that same kind of detail was added even to this promo for season 2 of series that got shown on social media. And it all revolved around…a microphone.

Tasked with creating a mic in between agents Ford and Tench in a police interrogation cell was Territory Studio, which also handled a few other clean-ups in the push-in shot.

Here’s the story, step-by-step, of how Territory – led by VFX Supervisor Simon Carr and VFX Producer Robin D’Arcy – researched the prop itself (even taking a used version apart), modeled it in CG and finished the shot.

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MINDHUNTER Season 2 Soundtrack Out on December 6

Jason Hill
Jason Hill (Instagram), Dept. Of Recording And Power (Instagram)

More notes and details:

Jason Hill (Instagram)

LGATs and Fight Club. Dissecting a Delusion

In 1989 Chuck Palahniuk participated in a controversial type of “personal development” seminar, known generically as a large group awareness training (LGAT) and, according to Palahniuk, this seminar inspired him to become a writer.

In the two decades since Fight Club was published and released, film reviewers, academics, journalists, and the public have largely agreed about Palahniuk’s commentary on consumerism and masculinity; however, just as Tyler Durden spliced single frames of pornography into family films, it will be argued that Chuck Palahniuk, and later David Fincher, spliced numerous references to the LGAT industry into Fight Club. It will be contended that, while Fight Club touches on multiple themes, a major metaphor relates to Palahniuk’s involvement with these organisations.

Because Palahniuk and Fincher refer to various individuals, processes, criticisms, and critics associated with LGATs, this analysis will start with an overview of the LGAT industry. Evidence of Palahniuk’s participation in the most well-known LGAT of its time will then be provided, and the remainder of the paper will discuss the parallels between this industry and the book/film.

John Hunter, author of this essay, was diagnosed with bipolar I disorder in 2003 and since then has been trying to understand the illness, and its impact on belief-formation. In 2017 John completed his PhD in psychology, contending that a brutal form of “personal development” training triggers a bipolar state (hypomania/mania), that this experience contributes to a kind of religious conversion… and that Chuck Palahniuk and David Fincher were satirising these trainings in Fight Club.

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FilmLight, Colour on Stage: Eric Weidt

Creating the unique look for Mindhunter Seasons 1 and 2.

November 15, 2019
FilmLight, Colour on Stage

Eric Weidt talks about his collaboration with director David Fincher – from defining the workflow to creating the look and feel of Mindhunter. He breaks down scenes and runs through colour grading details of the masterful crime thriller.

Presented at IBC2019 on September 15, 2019.

Eric Weidt spent years in Paris working with fashion photographers transitioning from traditional film to digital capture workflows. He created custom film-emulation ICC profiles, and mastered color work and compositing techniques for print stills and fashion films.

Clients included Mario Testino, David Sims, Patrick Demarchelier, Mert Alas and Markus Piggot, Steven Meisel, Hedi Slimane, Karl Lagerfeld. His motion picture work for David Fincher includes responsibilies as VFX artist (Gone Girl), and Digital Intermediate Colorist (Videosyncracy and Mindhunter).

He holds a BA in Theater Arts from the University of California at Santa Cruz and is both an American and French citizen.

HDR version available for download

Blurred luminance key for a “GLO” effect.

“These are my layers for making a chromatic aberration for David Fincher”.

Find out about the new and upcoming features in Baselight with FilmLight’s Martin Tlaskal