‘How Canon is Shaping the Film Industry’ 

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At the beginning of September each year, 70 000 television professionals, video and digital film specialists and TV managers meet at Amsterdam RAI for the annual IBC Exhibition of equipment and IBC Conference about the new trends, business ideas and technology solutions. IBC is an important event growing each year as the importance of its field expands, connecting into the technology of film from one side and into the computers engineering from the other. As the leading global tradeshow for professionals engaged in the creation, management and delivery of broadcasting media and entertainment, the event’s unparalleled exhibition and agenda setting conference, it encompass the very latest developments in broadcasting, mobile TV, IPTV, digital signage and R&D making it essential for everyone’s understanding of the .industry and it future. Omolola Itayemi in an interview  with Kieram Magee, Professional Imaging Director, Professional Imaging Group, Canon at Amsterdam Rai discusses the pursuit of the shot, the future of Nollywood and film making and how Canon is shaping the industry with tools to capture every precious moment.

Why is Canon Here?

Probably you know IBC is one of the leading broadcast and movie events in Europe. Canon is as you know working very heavily in the broadcast sector where we have been for many years. And recently, we moved into the image creation side. So far, we are doing movie products, basically a range of cameras which allow us to create great user content. The key reason we are here this year is to continue to launch a range of broadcast products and several new cameras products and lenses.

Our 5D Mark II digital lenses camera launched several years ago which really was the starting point for people using smaller cameras to really get a filming/movie effect.

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The 5D Mark ll and its successor 5D Mark III were instrumental in bringing cinematic and movie-making capability to a wider audience. So that was Canon entry into the market and in many ways it revolutionized it. Since then, many people including Canon has started to produce a range of cameras from a relatively small price to the top-end sector. And we have introduced the C range from 100 to 500, all of these are cinematic products which are capable of generating a cinematic type feel and look for images and this year, we introduced the C-700 which is at the top of the range and this is a product which we feel will be suited for movie-making at the highest level. It could be used two ways; 4K which is right at the top spectrum and it has HDR capabilities.

So Much is Being Talked About 4k And HDR?

 The key themes in IBC this year are 4K and HDR. Both 4K and HDR movies are being delivered to the homes with TVs. Of course, you’ll see TVs in the shops now coming with these functions. HDR capabilities comes with functions like vibrant colours, pictures going from dark to light in one scene, HDR will make that accessible. So it’s one thing that is actually changing and driving the whole TV market as well which will be content generated with super high resolution. We have created a graded set of lenses and cameras, all of which allow you to manage the creation of that content. The tools we are bringing will allow creative people understand and use the technology in different ways and in much more appealing ways too.

How is Canon Positioning Itself to Benefit From the Emerging Market In Nigeria?

 We have an ambassadorial programme where we work with photographers across the world and these people become spokesmen, not only for Canon but for photography. They also help in bringing photography to more people and having them understand the possibilities with photography, giving them the opportunity to capture scenes and tell their stories.

We are actually in Africa working with up and coming photographers and we have been running trainings both on the video side and still photography side to build a community of people who want to capture African environment, color, sound and scenery which is different from what we are seeing in Europe. There is a big growth opportunity there we feel both for photography and hopefully for our products. We are actively working more on the educative side, we see that as an opportunity to bring photography to more people and bring a huge growth market for us.

What is Pursuit of The Shot?

 As a brand, we really try to position ourselves based on quality. We might not necessarily be the first to come to the market but we come usually with the right products with high quality, one that is sustainable, has some longevity and in some way feature-proof. Our latest marketing approach is giving people the chance to get the shot. It’s about photography being part of your DNA.

Our whole idea is to create tools which allow people to create and preserve momentous images whether for leisure or work. It’s about images that last; that’s why our current marketing campaign is ‘Pursuit of the Shot’. What we are trying to do is make that shot and also provide education and knowledge towards getting that shot. Sometimes, the shot is complicated, so you have to the right tools and know what you are doing. We see the mobile phone as an entry point for people into photography and then we take the mobile phone users on a journey into photography and providing the tools to do that.

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Nollywood is Growing Very Fast. How Does Canon Intend to Tap into This?

 Actually, we are very aware of Nollywood and we are actively trying to create products and lens technology to this area. Of course, the content providers are aware of the products from Canon. Of course, the C 100 to 700 products are ideally suited to work in movie making in various scenarios.

We are building as range of products not just suited to Nollywood but to the industry as a whole. But also I would say if you look at lower cost productions as well, they are going from small budgets movies to your full feature length movie where the budget is in millions. We have a range of products that can work from entry level to top-end level.

Has IBC come at a good time for the electronic media industry? 

Why? Absolutely! It provides the perfect opportunity for the creative industries to come together and collaborate to drive the future of television. The creative opportunities available today are ushering in a new era of broadcast and the conversations that take place at IBC will help to shape the direction of the industry in these exciting and innovative times.

What do you think are the key developments in, or threats to, your market sector at the current time?

The proliferation of Ultra HD represents a massive opportunity for the entire industry and it’s critical that professionals have the tools they need to create content for this new world. The expectations on TV in particular are beyond anything we’ve seen before and we’re enabling this powerful, visual storytelling through our technology.

Why should delegates visit your stand at IBC?

The Canon stand reflects the rapidly changing broadcast industry. Delegates can get hands-on with our entire line-up of broadcast solutions and technologies including the recently announced CN7x17 KAS – our first-ever cinema lens to feature a servo drive unit. We’re showing off our X-series camcorders, pioneering Cinema EOS range and extensive portfolio of over 100 lenses.

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