American Cinematographer - April 2015 - I6

SUP ER 1 6 DELIVERS CINEMATIC IMAGERY FOR
realism, while being careful
to never get near caricature
or an overly exotic stereotype
of India. And we created a
stark contrast with color and
lighting with the rest of the
fi lm, which takes place in
Mumbai in the 1980s."
In looking at reference
Cinematographer Petra
Korner's latest feature, Umrika,
starts out in a small mountain
village in India in the
mid-1970s. When Ramakant,
a young boy from the village
who discovers that his brother
- long believed to be in
America - has actually gone
missing, he begins to invent
letters on his behalf to save
their mother from heartbreak,
while setting out on a journey
to fi nd him.
The script has humorous
and dramatic aspects, but
Korner and director Prashant
Nair agreed that it should be
photographed with a classic
dramatic approach.
"We never intended for this
story to have an indie-fi lm
look per se," Korner explains.
"We wanted something
atmospheric and cinematic,
but also warm and vibrant,
especially in the fi rst act.
We talked about the village
having a certain enchantment,
almost bordering on magic
materials and identifying
the right approach, Korner
realized that Nair responded
to a fi lm aesthetic. "I started
looking at all the fi lms we
were referencing in terms of
look and feel, and we realized
that even the most recent
ones had almost exclusively
been shot on fi lm.
"Texture and timelessness
played a big part," adds
Korner. "Umrika is a period
fi lm, encompassing the
'70s and '80s in a region of
the world where nothing is
slick, minimalistic or clean.
To photograph this place
and this period - which
we all associate with a very
organic, textured look - in a
modern-feeling medium felt
double-wrong."
Korner says 35mm 2-perf
format was comparable
cost-wise with high-end
digital, but there were no
sync-sound 2-perf cameras
available in India, which
initially led her to Super 16.
"We then critically viewed
a lot of Super 16 fi lms, and
came to the conclusion
that aesthetically it was the
perfect choice for Umrika,"
Korner reveals. "We knew
that grain and texture were
going to be a considerable
part of the look, especially
since we wanted to crop our
already small negative to a
widescreen 2.35:1 aspect
ratio, and we were ready to
embrace that.
"Super 16 is also a fantastic
format because the small
cameras, in our case the ARRI
416, are fast and easy to set
up and switch from handheld
to studio modes," she says.
"They are rugged in all terrains
and weather conditions, and
there is a proven workfl ow in
post."
The fi lm stocks were
KODAK VISION3 500T
Color Negative Film 7219 for
interiors and night exteriors,
rated at E.I. 320, and KODAK
VISION3 250D Color
Negative Film 7207, rated at
200, for day exteriors.
Korner chose lenses with
an eye to counteracting
the inherent softness of
Super 16, while not wanting

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of American Cinematographer - April 2015

Contents
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - Intro
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - Cover1
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - Cover2
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 1
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 2
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - Contents
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 4
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 5
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 6
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 7
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 8
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 9
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 10
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 11
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 12
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 13
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 14
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 15
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American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 17
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 18
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 19
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 20
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 21
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 22
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American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 24
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American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 26
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 27
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 28
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 29
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 30
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American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 36
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 37
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 38
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American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 43
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American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 46
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 47
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American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 49
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 50
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 51
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American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 53
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American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 57
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American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 60
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 61
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 62
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 63
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 64
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - I1
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - I2
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - I3
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - I4
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - I5
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - I6
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - I7
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - I8
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 65
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 66
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 67
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 68
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American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 70
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 71
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American Cinematographer - April 2015 - 120
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - Cover3
American Cinematographer - April 2015 - Cover4
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