Alejandro G 😊 Inarritu‘s Birdman pulls off one of the great cinematic magic tricks of all time 😊 The entire 119-minute movie — about a fading movie actor, played by Michael Keaton, trying to jump-start his career by appearing on the Broadway stage — looks as if it had were shot in one extended take. Of course, that would have been impossible. However, Inarritu, determined to maintain the illusion behind the $18 million film, has instructed his editors not to discuss how long each individual take was and how many cuts, in some cases disguised by ingenious visual effects, were stitched together to make it appear seamless.
Birdman, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu‘s best picture Oscar winner, has been widely praised for looking as if the entire 119-minute movie was shot in one uninterrupted take — an inventive feat that earned it four Oscars, including best direction and cinematography for its director of photography Emmanuel Lubezki. During awards season, the had filmmakers left the impression that the movie — which actually consists of a series of long individual shots, some in the ten-minute range — was something of a high-wire act. Once the cameras were rolling, there was no room for an actor to blow a line or miss a mark without destroying that shot. As Inarritu told The Hollywood Reporter, “It’s like a live concert. You can’t fix it, so if you f— it up, everything goes nuts. Everything you see in the film is real.” (last emended 64 days ago by Shalynn Saenz from Gwalior, India)
As stated by the analysts from nofilmschool.com, well, Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Birdman was made to look as though it was filmed in one shot. It obviously wasn’t, but making it look like it was must’ve been no small feat for the filmmakers, namely the film’s world-class DP Emmanuel Lubezki and editors Douglas Crise and Stephen Mirrone. However, Variety Artisans sheds some light on Birdman’s digital intermediate colorist, Steve Scott, who had to solve the unique problem of colourr correcting and grading the frames that were constantly on the move. He shares his experience, as well as the collected effort it had taken to pull this film off, in the video below: (last edited 9 weeks ago by Tanzania Finch from Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan)
Nyfa.edu also describes how how did the Birdman team (Birdteam?) pull this off? With lots of practice. A proxy set resembling the labyrinthine backstage hallways of the St. James Theatre—where Birdman is set—was built in Los Angeles before filming began. It was there that Iñárritu and Lubezki blocked out each shot, playing Birdman’s jazzy, drum-based score in the background to help set the tone. By plotting and practicing each long take, the filmmakers were able to figure out how and where they could hide their shot transitions, as well as get an idea of where to stage their actors and place their lights. They realized for the more difficult shots, visual effects would be needed to help with the transition.