Facing inhospitable conditions, intense action scenes and the need to accommodate a massive number of visual effects, cinematographer John Seale and his crew chose to shoot principal photography on Mad Max: Fury Road with ARRI Alexa cameras and capture ARRIRAW on Codex Onboard Recorders.
Seale’s crew was outfitted with six ARRI Alexas and a number of Canon EOS 5Ds, with the latter used in part as crash cams in action sequences. The Alexas were supported by 11 Codex Onboard Recorders. The relatively large number of cameras and recorders helped the camera crew to remain nimble. While one scene was being shot, the next was being prepped. “We kept two cameras built the whole time, and two vehicles rigged the whole time,” recalls camera coordinator Michelle Pizanis. “When we drove up [to a location], we could start shooting, rather than break down the camera at one site and rebuild it at the next.”
John Seale at the camera with one of his trusty Codex recorders.
Because the film was shot in Namibia, Seale recalls, “everyone said Codex was the recording device that we had to have. We were a little worried about desert heat and desert cold. It changes so much from night to day. And during the day, we had dust storms, dust flying everywhere. We sometimes had moisture in the air. But the Codex systems didn’t fail us. They came straight through with flying colors.”