Skip to main content

Like brushes for painters, cinema optics help cinematographers bring director’s vision to life

 The film director wasn’t happy. The images on her rushes from the day’s digital shooting were too sharp, lacking the ‘creamy and organic’ look and feel of traditional film stock.

While shooting with digital cameras has allowed the world’s top filmmakers to capture Hollywood blockbuster features, high-ranking TV series, as well as independent content, digital image sensors lack the characteristic grain structure of traditional film stock, so images can appear too sharp – even surgical. And adapting camera lenses to the various specific needs of each captor on a camera is complicated and costly. For the companies that rent costly digital camera equipment to filmmaking teams, this means having to buy many different lenses.
Now Angénieux the Thales group brand of zoom lenses used in motion picture production has come up with a solution to all of these digital cinema downsides. The company’s latest innovation, called “IRO “- Interchangeable Rear Optics – giving the ability to swap the rear part of the optics with only minor re-alignments on a zoom lens brings rental houses of cinema equipment a new versatile solution. Angénieux anamorphic lenses integrating IRO technology can easily be transformed into spherical. Angénieux latest spherical zoom lenses, Ultra 12x, thanks to the IRO technology, can cover different sizes of camera sensors which number is increasing at the digital time.

IRO offers new flexibility in a fast-changing market since our clients can now buy one lens rather than two, which also means a faster return on investment.
Severine Serrano, Sales and Marketing Director for Angénieux.

 In terms of aesthetics, Angénieux zoom lenses reproduce more faithfully the soft look of film stock “It’s a way of humanizing digital,” Severine Serrano says. Angénieux lenses have a signature look that sublimes even the skin of actors.

"Our lenses are technology at the service of artwork creation"
Severine Serrano

 No one knows this better than acclaimed American cinematographer Edward Lachman, who was distinguished on May 18th at this year’s Cannes International Film Festival during the 6th edition of the Pierre Angénieux ExcelLens in Cinematography. Lachman’s work, which includes the recent Tom Haynes films “Wonderstruck” and “Carol”, has been lauded for the exquisite use of light to capture emotion.


Watch Thales Angénieux lenses in action here
More on or @angenieuxlenses on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.