Houston Production Company Selects Panasonic VariCam to Shoot METRO Commercial Spots
Full-service production company South Coast Film & Video (Houston, TX) recently purchased a Panasonic VariCam LT 4K cinema camcorder that has been used to shoot a new commercial campaign for METRO, the Houston transportation agency serving the nation’s fourth-largest city.
South Coast Director/ DP Everett Gorel said that the VariCam LT is the latest in a long line of Panasonic camera gear that the company has fielded throughout its 36+-year history, including the first tape-based VariCam in the Southwest. Gorel opted for the VariCam LT after a rigorous demo with the VariCam 35 and a July 4th shoot-out between the VariCam LT and several other 4K options.
“The LT outperformed the competition in covering our city’s 4th of July ‘Freedom Over Texas’ event, when we shot handheld with it from mid-afternoon through the late night fireworks,” says Gorel. “The Panasonic camcorder stood out in terms of its broad dynamic range and extreme low-light capabilities (native ISO5000), and was a pleasure to shoot with ergonomically.”
Gorel has already used the VariCam LT to shoot two spots for METRO. The first :30 spot, “This is My Metro” profiles Zack, a bus-riding high-school student and drum major. The second spot, with University of Houston football coach Tom Herman, promotes free rides on METRO to and from every Cougar home football game. Both commercials have been heavily promoted on local television and METRO’s web site, www.ridemetro.org.
“The VariCam LT excelled at TDECU stadium, where we were faced with a fairly uncontrollable situation, having to shoot whenever the Coach was available, which turned out to be for only 30 minutes in almost direct sun. Not optimal conditions, but the camera looked great,” says Gorel.
South Coast shot both Metro commercials in 4K and handled the color grade and edit in-house, using both Resolve and Avid. The VariCam LT was outfitted with a lens package of Zeiss Compact Primes and a Canon CINE-SERVO 17-120mm zoom.