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Cinematographer Nigel Bluck Chooses Anamorphic Lenses to Capture Noir Look of ‘True Detective’

Not only does season two of HBO’s hit noir series True Detective switch to a completely different storyline, but the production went from shooting on film to shooting digitally. To make the transition, cinematographer Nigel Bluck insisted on using Panavision anamorphic lenses.

“If we were going to shoot digital, I campaigned heavily to shoot anamorphic,” he tells Panavision. “I’ve had great experiences shooting with an Alexa and anamorphic lenses, and what those lenses allowed me to do with a digital image. We did some tests shooting anamorphic and extracting the 16:9 image from the 2.35 anamorphic native image. The producers loved it and could see the value in the anamorphic approach and in vintage lenses as a whole, especially since a lot of the films we were referencing were noir films from 1970s America.”