Ryota Kobayashi Color grades Evil Does Not Exist with DaVinci Resolve Advanced Panel

Ryusuke Hamaguchi’s Film Evil Does Not Exist Shot and Graded with Blackmagic Design

Blackmagic Design today announced that director Ryusuke Hamaguchi’s latest film, “Evil Does Not Exist,” was shot on Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 6K G2 digital film cameras and graded with DaVinci Resolve Studio editing, color grading, visual effects (VFX) and audio post production software.

The film, which is Hamaguchi’s first since his Oscar winning film “Drive My Car,” was shot by Yoshio Kitagawa of Cube Film and graded by Ryota Kobayashi of Omnibus Japan Inc. using a DaVinci Resolve Advanced Panel.

“Evil Does Not Exist,” which recently won a Silver Lion award at the 80th Venice Film Festival, tells the story of Takumi, a handyman, and his daughter Hana. The pair are living off the land in Mizubiki Village where its townspeople become aware of a corporation’s plan to build a glamping site on their grounds.

Cinematographer Kitagawa said: “I used the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 6K G2 for this film. This is the second time I have used Blackmagic cameras for Hamaguchi’s films, following ‘Happy Hour,’ which I also collaborated with Kobayashi on. Although other cameras were considered, I felt that shooting with a Super 35mm sensor would better convey what we wanted to express in the script. Considering the possibility of cropping or resizing, I chose the high resolution Pocket Cinema Camera 6K G2. Additionally, Kobayashi informed me that Blackmagic RAW makes color separation easier for grading.”

Kitagawa continued, “For this film, I primarily used Nikon’s old lenses, particularly the GN Auto NIKKOR 45mm f/2.8, for shooting. I mostly used one Pocket Cinema Camera 6K G2, and for scenes requiring two cameras, I used two of the same camera.”

The film, characterized by beautiful natural light without extensive use of artificial lighting, simulates the look of Kodak Portra 400 film. A negative and a print data of the Macbeth chart shot with Portra were attached to a PENTAX Film Duplicator, and they were shot with the Pocket Cinema Camera 6K G2. Kobayashi color corrected the footage from the Pocket Cinema Camera 6K G2 accurately using DaVinci Resolve Studio’s color matching tool and fine tuned to create the LUT.

Kobayashi said: “The Pocket Cinema Camera 6K G2 was well suited for matching the Portra 400 reference. It had a good match with the old lenses used for this film, and although we didn’t add grain artificially, it had a pleasant level of graininess on footage.”

Kobayashi continued: “Since the footage was well shot, I didn’t have much trouble with grading. Particularly, snow shots can often pose challenges during grading, as they tend to lose detail or appear odd when adding color to highlights. However, I was able to grade the snow shots stress free this time.”

“This film features beautiful lighting, and I focused on recreating the impressions felt by Kitagawa, who was shooting on site. When shooting in a hurry on location, it’s sometimes difficult to achieve the best results. I used DaVinci Resolve’s HDR tool to relight certain parts of shots. The HDR tool allowed for a fairly accurate simulation of the aperture of a camera. This resulted in an appearance close to what the human eye perceives and a good finish,” concluded Kobayashi.

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