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STAR WARS: ROGUE ONE could be an ultra-widescreen movie

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When Star Wars first rocked up in 1977, it was a film that created new benchmarks for special effects in cinematic history. From visuals through to sound effects, Star Wars pushed the bar higher and higher, with each successive film looking to set even higher goals. Hell, say what you like about the prequels, but Jar Jar Binks was a freakin’ amazing abomination that was rendered with CGI back in 1999.


So it should come as no surprise that the next generation of Star Wars movies are looking to follow in those footsteps. While CGI can only take you so far, there’s more than one way to wow audiences. And that wow factor may just see the upcoming anthology film Star Wars: Rogue One, going rogue and wide.

That’s according to The Playlist, who say that Rogue One cinematographer Greig Fraser is seeking to use Ultra Panavision 70 lenses on the spin-off. So what makes an ultra widescreen film all that different?

Well firstly, ultra widescreen gives film crews a much larger area to set and record scenes, with the detail inherent in this format being perfect for for cinemas and even bigger IMAX screens. The camera that’ll most likely be used for Rogue One however, is an Arri Alexa 65 large format digital camera. A camera that is capable of shooting footage in 6K.


Director Quentin Tarantino is also using the more standard anamorphic Ultra Panavision 70 lenses for The Hateful Eight in order to give his film an old-school look, lenses which are quite old, numbering in the decades even. Now imagine such old-school technology inserted into new-school digital hardware. That could result in something special visually, for Rogue One, if it focuses on anamorphic lenses.

The Ultra Panavision 70 lenses used by Robert Richardson on The Hateful Eight also create a super-wide spect ratio of 2.76:1 when used with a 65mm capture area, resulting in even further detail being picked up. Imagine such detail, in a proper Star Wars battle then. Considering how director Gareth Edwards’ Godzilla movie was beautifully framed, I can’t wait to see how this pans out.

Long story short, ultra-widescreen looks real pretty.

Last Updated: August 31, 2015

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