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Steadicam and the inevitable


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#1 Dan Coplan

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Posted 17 May 2006 - 12:31 AM

Just curious who the oldest operator on record is or was - not, "Well my gramps still puttered around the living room with a lightweight 16 until he was 80" but actual full-on production.

Obviously different for everyone, but I wonder what the average age is for petering out.

Dan "Hopefully Got A Ways To Go" Coplan
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#2 Eric Fletcher S.O.C.

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Posted 17 May 2006 - 02:09 AM

Dan,
Steadicam operating is an Technical/Art Form That only gets Better with Age/Experiance.You WILL eventually Get IT ......Garrett Brown..... Jeezz http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/4807361/



When is John going to see his sled back in his hands? or are you going to continue to be a thief?
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#3 JobScholtze

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Posted 17 May 2006 - 03:26 AM

Oh no, not that clown again :ph34r:
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#4 Dan Coplan

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Posted 17 May 2006 - 10:00 AM

Maybe a silly question but I was tired after a long day of Steadicamming and thinking about my future in the business, physically speaking.

I guess Garrett is the obvious answer, though not necessarily because I know some guys who got into the game at a later age and are successfully working on big productions. At some point in life you can't be expected to successfully sprint after an actor at full speed with 50 lbs. strapped to your body.

Dan Coplan
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#5 Imran Naqvi

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Posted 17 May 2006 - 10:26 AM

I'm sure David Grove will chip in in a a sec but surely that's what a rickshaw and 2 grips are for!

Alternatively if it's quiet enough you've got the handsfree segway as an option......
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#6 David Allen Grove

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Posted 17 May 2006 - 11:56 AM

ha! I plan on operating from my rickshaw till I'm about.. oh... 90.
No sense in wearing the rig at that age.

I've already got myself a rickhsaw driver too.. ;)

Posted Image
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#7 Fred Davis

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Posted 17 May 2006 - 01:22 PM

ha! I plan on operating from my rickshaw till I'm about.. oh... 90.
No sense in wearing the rig at that age.

I've already got myself a rickhsaw driver too.. ;)


Excellent pic! That's the way to travel.
And I urge y'al to leave Byro alome. Sure, it's fun, but it's ultimately uncool to tease the mentally handicapped. Simply hide the car keys, Child-proof the cabinets, and avoid direct conflict where possible.
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#8 RonBaldwin

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Posted 17 May 2006 - 03:28 PM

"At some point in life you can't be expected to successfully sprint after an actor at full speed with 50 lbs. strapped to your body."

50 lbs...I want that set-up! Probably closer to 70 lbs. with even the lightest 35mm cameras.

and Fred's right, arguing on the internet is like the special olympics...only the "mentally handicapped" win.

RB
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#9 Michael Stumpf

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Posted 17 May 2006 - 05:51 PM

Dan to answer your question, I'd say it's a lot like being an athlete.
The length of each person's career will depend on their conditioning
as well as how long their body can take the stress and strain of the work.

There are guys who'se backs have gone out within a couple years of
starting Steadicam (even in their late 20's) and people who
still do steadicam well into their 50's.

And Ron's right, 50 lbs, maybe if you fly a Flyer or similiar lightweight rig/camera set up.
More like 70-75 pounds on average with most 35 mm cameras and rigs.
Fly a Genesis, 535B or other heavy camera with all the bells on two motors, filters,
cine/panatape, etc and it's probably closer to 85 pounds all up.

You said you were thinking about your future in this business physically speaking after tiring
from a long day of work...and just think your pretty new at Steadicam and still relatively young.
Only you will know in the coming years if this job is right for you in the long haul. And if so, only you will know
how long you want to continue in a profession which can and often is
very tiring and exhausting to both your body and mind before calling it quits.

I for one don't think I'd WANT to be running around with a Steadicam on when
I'm in my 50's.
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#10 RonBaldwin

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Posted 18 May 2006 - 12:36 AM

when I get tired I do alot of coke.

read Will Arnot's great write-up about his AR experiences on RENT. I think his sled alone was 70 to 75 lbs. and that was with an Arri LT, pretty much the lightest 35mm out there. I couldn't do it. Will is no girlie-man!

Ron B
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#11 Brad Grimmett

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Posted 18 May 2006 - 02:59 AM

when I get tired I do alot of coke.

Ron B

Interesting choice. Don't you think speed would give you a longer lasting burst of energy? Maybe you could test this out and let us know your scientific findings.
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#12 thomas-english

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Posted 18 May 2006 - 04:44 AM

a line of coke to get the point across as to how the shot would look better.
2 valiums so the AD stops pissing you off.
a small bucket of speed for running shots and loading the van at the end of the day.
chrystal meths if it s a buy out with no overtime.
3 tabs of acid so you finally understand what the hell the directors on about with his "make a little more wavy"
morpine and three hot nurses for the aches and pains the next day.
angle dust and a small handgun to get money off production.

You would be a fool with no longevity in this industry to go on any big production without the above.
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#13 RonBaldwin

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Posted 18 May 2006 - 09:47 AM

tru dat, yo
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#14 Simon Jayes

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Posted 18 May 2006 - 10:25 AM

The biggest problem with getting older as a Steadicam Operator is putting up with the crap from one's crew, friends and family.......displayed here by a photoshopped T-Shirt my family made to celebrate my 40th

Attached File  Tshirt_Front_Image.jpg   34.18KB   263 downloadsAttached File  Tshirt_back_image.jpg   25.77KB   194 downloads
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#15 Erwin Landau

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Posted 18 May 2006 - 10:39 AM

As Ted Churchill would say:


Fly safe and prosper...


Erwin"Still Shrinking"Landau

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