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Dan Wake

Netflix minimum requirements camera

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37 minutes ago, HockeyFan12 said:

Absolutely true. I actually worked on a project that Netflix acquired as an original despite being shot in 1080p... because the content was good and there was a market for it. But for the following seasons they're going with 4k acquisition.

But Netflix will still buy films that aren't 4k if they aren't originals, and generally they want some creative control over originals. The above experience is VERY rare. It was even more unusual in that each episode cost (so far as I know) less than a million dollars to produce due to the nature of the show, so the risk was relatively low. Even if you can keep the budget ultra low like that, I still wouldn't throw that kind of money at a series and shoot the whole thing on spec, I would just produce a pilot and go from there to mitigate risk. So I have to assume Dan has already had his series picked up, or there's already interest from different networks based on a script or spec, but that it requires smaller cameras for the filming style.

I would assume from the nature of his posts, he may have a project he’s working on that is a micro-budget or less and he wants to swing for the fences. 

I work with a small group of friends that are also filmmakers and at least one of those friends wants to follow the Netflix guidelines as close as possible even though we work with zero budgets... meaning filmmaking is not our full time jobs and we self fund our projects. I’ve decided to shoot with ML Raw and they are going 4K.

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20 minutes ago, mercer said:

I would assume from the nature of his posts, he may have a project he’s working on that is a micro-budget or less and he wants to swing for the fences. 

I work with a small group of friends that are also filmmakers and at least one of those friends wants to follow the Netflix guidelines as close as possible even though we work with zero budgets... meaning filmmaking is not our full time jobs and we self fund our projects. I’ve decided to shoot with ML Raw and they are going 4K.

Fair enough. I suppose he didn't mention his circumstances so either one of us could be right, but I wouldn't assume just because you're working with low budgets so is he. I'm just saying, other than this one thing I happened to work on, I haven't heard of a series being picked up as a Netflix original that wasn't shot specifically as an original. And the irony there is this series was shot in 1080p! So I definitely wouldn't recommend shooting a series hoping for Netflix to acquire it as an original since it's exceptionally rare, and I especially wouldn't recommend letting that dictate the camera you use. Having a good cast and IP will help more.

To me going with Netflix standards seems a little arbitrary anyway. 98% of features and tv are still finished on 2k and most of that is Alexa. And all of that is still eligible for Netflix licensing under their normal (non-original series) terms. If I could afford an Alexa for a production, I would never rule it out just because Netflix does for the content they produce themselves. Netflix also released its recommended post requirements and the only vfx suite they include is After Effects. And they don't include FCPX for editing or Nucoda for finishing. What if I want to work in Nuke and FCPX and finish in Nucoda? (I don't, but what if I did?)

The fact that they even publish these requirements publicly seems weird to me, like a marketing ploy of some sort. But maybe I'm just frustrated I'm not at the level where I can pitch to Netflix and I'm still mostly making personal projects on spec.

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@HockeyFan12 yes you are correct it is wrong to assume based on my budget and that’s why I was assuming based on his last 20 some odd posts. I was adding my experience with like minded people (if my assumption is correct)

I think you may be assuming based on your experience working in LA on bigger productions but I can count on one hand how many forum members that may have access to that kind of “less than a million dollar per episode budget” so I am guessing he’s somewhere between our two worlds. 

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24 minutes ago, mercer said:

@HockeyFan12 yes you are correct it is wrong to assume based on my budget and that’s why I was assuming based on his last 20 some odd posts. I was adding my experience with like minded people (if my assumption is correct)

I think you may be assuming based on your experience working in LA on bigger productions but I can count on one hand how many forum members that may have access to that kind of “less than a million dollar per episode budget” so I am guessing he’s somewhere between our two worlds. 

Fair enough! I certainly don't have access to that kind of money either. I'm just confused why someone would be concerned with requirements for Netflix originals unless they were already in talks with Netflix and were looking for recommendations from lower-budget filmmakers for crash cams or smaller cameras, etc.

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18 minutes ago, HockeyFan12 said:

Fair enough! I certainly don't have access to that kind of money either. I'm just confused why someone would be concerned with requirements for Netflix originals unless they were already in talks with Netflix and were looking for recommendations from lower-budget filmmakers for crash cams or smaller cameras, etc.

Well, I think there is a notion that you have to shoot in 4K... look Netflix has a page that says it’s a requirement, I have a movie idea... 1+1= Netflix sale.

So I think a lot of people feel their project can definitely get onto Netflix especially if they follow their guidelines.

As a screenwriter first, do you know how many people who aren’t even creative at all pitch me movie ideas and tell me they are thinking about writing a screenplay? 

Point being, a lot of people think this stuff is easy and they just need a script or the right camera and BAM BOOM BANG... Hollywood deal.

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58 minutes ago, mercer said:

Well, I think there is a notion that you have to shoot in 4K... look Netflix has a page that says it’s a requirement, I have a movie idea... 1+1= Netflix sale.

So I think a lot of people feel their project can definitely get onto Netflix especially if they follow their guidelines.

As a screenwriter first, do you know how many people who aren’t even creative at all pitch me movie ideas and tell me they are thinking about writing a screenplay? 

Point being, a lot of people think this stuff is easy and they just need a script or the right camera and BAM BOOM BANG... Hollywood deal.

Heh, I probably suffer from the opposite problem because of abusive people I worked with. But that makes sense.

Imo, screenwriting is the hardest part. 

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If netflix is commissioning you to make a show, and you want to use a camera thats not on their list, im sure you can just tell them. i would

id be like "Id rather shoot with Camera X because A, B, C". what are they gonna say, "no"?

also, what is the theoretical camera that people want to shoot with that isnt on their list? potato is there

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12 hours ago, HockeyFan12 said:

Fair enough! I certainly don't have access to that kind of money either. I'm just confused why someone would be concerned with requirements for Netflix originals unless they were already in talks with Netflix and were looking for recommendations from lower-budget filmmakers for crash cams or smaller cameras, etc.


Which Netflix already allows you a certain percentage of shots to be from those non-officially approved cameras which are already listed, specifically for situations like that. 

11 hours ago, mercer said:

Well, I think there is a notion that you have to shoot in 4K... look Netflix has a page that says it’s a requirement, I have a movie idea... 1+1= Netflix sale.


But that is so wrong to think, and I wouldn't want us to be encouraging that kind of incorrect thinking that:
Netflix = "must  have a 4K finish"

 

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11 hours ago, IronFilm said:


Which Netflix already allows you a certain percentage of shots to be from those non-officially approved cameras which are already listed, specifically for situations like that. 

I know, I've worked on a few Netflix shows, as I mentioned before, and even mixed in a limited amount of footage from 1080p sources. However, they do limit the amount of footage from those cameras. I was just guessing that the OP had a show he was pitching to Netflix or that Netflix had just green lit and he wanted to shoot in a more handheld/verité style and he was doing research to see if he could pitch using a crash cam as an A cam, maybe a sort of Blair Witch style thing or something closer to Crank. But in that case I'd look at the Venice as an A cam and maybe a bunch of GH5s for B cams–or just talking with Netflix directly instead of randos like us on a message board. 

15 hours ago, kaylee said:

If netflix is commissioning you to make a show, and you want to use a camera thats not on their list, im sure you can just tell them. i would

id be like "Id rather shoot with Camera X because A, B, C". what are they gonna say, "no"?

also, what is the theoretical camera that people want to shoot with that isnt on their list? potato is there

They're flexible, but not that flexible. They can and will say no, even to the biggest names. I remember there was one feature where the director wanted to use an Alexa and was forced to use an Alexa65 to meet their standards. Which doesn't seem like a compromise, but I'm sure it added to the budget and made some camera moves more difficult. Regardless, it wasn't his first choice. Netflix is flexible, but they still take the 4k native thing really seriously, and they're putting up the money. If you get a show there you can try it, but I would have a back up plan (Hulu?).

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