Friday, January 19, 2007

Appearances Can Be Deceiving...So Use More Camera Angles

Some series are using technology to become a lot more transparent and build a bigger fan base. Just take a look at "The Class" and its recent behind-the-scenes web experiment.

I can't wait until I can control the camera angle for my fav TV mystery drama. Just think of the possibilities. And if it's done right, viewers may watch the same show multiple times. Viewers will upload clips of these alternate views to YouTube, creating an instant viral video if it's done well.

Think about a show like "Lost" or "Heroes." Or any show where viewers are looking for the smallest clues to give them insight into the overall storyline or about some character's past while they try to unravel the big enigma.

Now imagine that the show was filmed simultaneously using multiple camera angles and that all of these camera angles are fed to your TV. The video stream has a default viewing angle, but viewers can change that angle as they wish. Maybe this feature is used only for key scenes since it would be nerve wracking to film and act in this environment all the time — I imagine stage actors would excel though.

Why use multiple angles? Easter eggs. Hide relevant clues about the story so that they can only be seen in these alternate views.

How far away are we? I really don't know. Televised sports usually lead the charge for such technological advances. More than seven years ago BBC viewers were able to select the camera angle for a footy match. We have the technology. Now we just need a two-part TV movie to take a chance — might be perfect for SciFi's next miniseries. And if that's successful, maybe some new series will take a chance and use SimulCamera as its hook.

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