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Surreel Shoots Chili Peppers Video with Panasonic AG-HVX200

Hausen, who served as director/cinematographer on the Red Hot Chili Peppers assignment (March 29, 2006)

Anticipation among fans has been building for months for the May 9 release of the Red Hot Chili Peppers latest CD, ?Stadium Arcadium (Warner Bros). When it came to selecting a filmmaker to shoot the ?making of documentary of the music video for ?Dani California, the first single from the CD, the band--long celebrated for its unique brand of funk-rap-punk-rock--chose David Hausen, principal of Surreel Inc., a production company with offices in New York City and Los Angeles.
Hausen, a longtime Panasonic DVX100 shooter, had just purchased the companys hand-held, production-quality AG-HVX200 DVCPRO HD camcorder, and used it to shoot the entire documentary, a version of which will air on MTV Networks popular ????Makes a Video show on Saturday, April 8. A second version will be packaged in a limited edition ?DVD with CD release in May. The production was a two-camera shoot, with the second HVX200 rented from Video Equipment Rental (Burbank, CA and New York, NY). 

Hausen, who served as director/cinematographer on the Red Hot Chili Peppers assignment (with Odell as second cameraman/editor), came up through the ranks as a Director of  Photography of features, documentaries and music videos (Shania Twain, Metallica) prior to establishing his own company. He was an early adopter of the DVX100 mini-DV 24p camcorder, which notably he has used to shoot a feature-length documentary, Mina and the Family Treasure (executive producer, Rosie ODonnell), that will air on PBS Plus in May. 

The HVX200 uniquely combines multiple high definition and standard definition formats, multiple recording modes and variable frames rates, and the vast benefits of P2 solid state memory recording in a rugged, compact design. The DVCPRO HD P2 camcorder offers contribution quality HD with independent intra-frame encoding, 4:2:2 color sampling, and less compression, making HD content easier and faster to edit and more able to stand up to image compositing versus long GOP MPEG-2 systems. 

Hausen shot 20+ hours over the course of three days on location in Los Angeles.  

The filmmaker said he and his second cameraman shared three 8 GB and one 4 GB P2 cards. ?Imagine, this was a new client, and I was shooting with a camera Id had for less that a week?and there was no tape, Hausen recalled. ?Frankly, I was anxious about a hard drive crash, but our workflow was just about perfect. We had two 15 PowerBooks on the set. Wed take a P2 card and import on one of the PowerBooks to verify and check footage; then wed take the same card and copy the raw data on the second PowerBook to a 500 GB external drive.

Hausen has already delivered a rough cut of the documentary to the band, and continues to edit the project, with his editing team based in Los Angeles while he works from New York.

The filmmaker will deliver a DVCPRO HD master to MTV later this month; Warner Brothers has specifically requested that the footage be delivered on a hard drive (though Hausen also produced a master tape element, with full color-correction, from which Warner will strike the DVDs). 
The ultra-versatile HVX200 records in 1080i and 720p in production-proven 100 Mbps DVCPRO HD quality, with the ability to capture images in 21 record modes. The DVCPRO HD format offers users cost-effective, intra-frame compression, where each frame stands on its own for editing, and its full 4:2:2 color sampling allows the image to hold up under color correction. The camera records video on a P2 card as IT-friendly MXF files in 1080/60i, 30p and 24p; in 720/60p, 30p and 24p; in 50Mbps DVCPRO50 and in 25Mbps DVCPRO or DV. The HVX200 can capture fast or slow action in 720p at various frame rates--the first time this function is available in a hand-held camera. The shooting frame rate in 720p native mode can be set for any of 11 steps between 12fps and 60fps including 24fps and 30fps. 

For more information on the AG-HVX200, visit

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Related Keywords:Surreel , Chili Peppers Video , Panasonic AG-HVX200

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