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DP David Libertella on Advice for Young Filmmakers

Approaching the Script
Libertella’s initial preparation for a film project begins with the script. “I read the script once through, reading aloud and paced so as to get a feel for the rhythm of the script.” He says, “I don’t begin consciously thinking about what shots or what lighting to employ until after I have read through it once and come to understand the story, the arc.”

Notetaking follows the first read-through. “I read it again and as I go through it I make notes, either in the margins or on a separate paper, about possible shots, color palettes, foreseeable problems to be solved.”

Camera Tips
Most young filmmakers begin shooting with a prosumer-level camera, such as the Panasonic DVX, long a workhorse for indie filmmakers. What does a new DP need to do when ready to film? “One of my first cameras,” says Libertella, “was the DVX, and after many years with it I can tell you to keep the gain low, and keep all your settings on manual. Manual focus, iris, zoom…the whole thing. You can learn a lot about how cameras work in general this way.”

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Posted by: Bob Gillen on Mar 21, 2012 at 4:36:19 pmComments (2)



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