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11-22-2021 - Case Study, Gear, Technology, News

"VENEZIA" by Rob Hardy, BSC, ASC – Shot on VENICE 2

By: SonyCine Team

Rob Hardy, BSC, ASC, is a British cinematographer known for his work on Mission Impossible: Fallout, Ex-Machina, shot on the Sony F65 and F55, and DEVS, shot on VENICE. Already an advocate for the original VENICE, he recently had the first crack at the new VENICE 2, creating a short film as a real-world test for how he would use the camera on an actual project. Hardy commented, “The opportunity to use VENICE 2 is actually a really fantastic one because it’s a real test. I mean, that’s essentially what this is. We’ve designed [this shoot] so that we’re effectively testing this camera for the very first time in a real filmmaking scenario.”


Hardy continued, “What we’re doing is putting it through its paces on a set using actors with a piece of drama with all of the issues and problems that may come with that. In other words, time pressures, having to move quite quickly in terms of lighting those things. I really wanted to see how the camera would perform in that context because that’s essentially how I would use it.” He added, “The VENICE 2 for me is a progression, it’s a no-brainer. And you need the sort of confidence to know when you’re shooting something that you don’t have to concern yourself with how the camera’s going to behave.”


The film he created, VENEZIA, is a lush period piece he created to leverage and showcase the camera’s wide dynamic range, color science and natural skin tones inherited from the original VENICE, and even better low-light performance as values for dual base ISO have bumped up to 800 and 3200.

Rob Hardy at left

“This is the first time I’ve ever used that large 8.6K sensor and we were lucky enough to get some anamorphic lenses, for the full cinematic effect, that will really utilize that whole sensor. As a result, it was quite astonishing. The ISOs have been bumped up in both instances. [That] enables me to shoot at a higher speed if need be in low light levels, which is something that wasn’t really an option before. So that for me, essentially is the big gain.”

Peter Wignall, Steadicam operator

With the new and more compact form factor of VENICE 2, Peter Wignall, Steadicam operator on VENEZIA felt that the camera is much easier than the original VENICE to set up on his rig. “We’re using the Cooke anamorphics, which are probably the heaviest lenses you can get at the moment that will cover the 8.6K sensor. [The more compact size of VENICE 2] makes it feasible [to fly the camera on the Steadicam].


Not only has VENICE 2 been downsized and made lighter, both crucial for efficient operations with unmanned aerial systems, but power consumption has also been economized, as drone operator Chris Williams of Flying Pictures noted. “In terms of power consumption the new VENICE seems to be remarkable. I was expecting to be changing [batteries] between each flight but no, we’ve done two flights and I’ve still got 50% left on the [drone’s] batteries, which are powering the gimbal, the camera, the video link and the lens control as well. It’s a much more compact package within the gimbal. The weight itself, I could keep the whole gimbal down to under 15 kilos (33 lbs) and that’s with lens control, air link and the whole camera package. The new VENICE 2 makes flying it on a drone possible. It’s going to last forever in the air. It’s got 8 stops of ND which are optically true built into it, which is astonishing.”

For further reading:


Alex Garland’s Devs shot on Sony VENICE by Rob Hardy, BSC, ASC

An interview with Rob Hardy, ASC, BSC

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