AMIRA Multicam shoots for ETERNAL GLORY

For many years ARRI’s AMIRA has been the camera of choice for corporate productions, documentaries, as well as television series and independent films shot by smaller crews. AMIRA is also increasingly being sought after to capture demanding live multi-camera productions. As a high-end solution for Multicam setups, the AMIRA was recently chosen to shoot the latest installment of the most popular, competition driven, reality program on Norwegian television.

Well over 1 million Norwegian viewers were glued to their television screens this past January for the ninth season premiere of ETERNAL GLORY (in Norwegian: MESTERNES MESTER). Commissioned and transmitted by network NRK and produced by Rubicon, this reality show, features retired sports stars and has historically been one of Norway’s highest viewed shows since its inception. Shot on location this year in Portugal, ETERNAL GLORY centers around a group of retired sports stars living together in a beachside villa. Every day they face new challenges and competitions. Initially they compete in teams but as the cast members are weeded out, they battle as individuals until there is one final winner who is crowned the ‘Master of the Masters.’ All the athletes are in their 30’s and 40’s and are still very fit. So, in combination with a sunny, Southern European summer backdrop and a scheduled release during the shortest and darkest days of winter in Scandinavia, the show’s success is preprogrammed.

AMIRA at work under the Portuguese sun

Equipment supplier, HDR Norway (formally Studios Norway), selected another hard-hitter into the line-up this year, ARRI’s AMIRA and DTS fiber transmission system. Previously supplying broadcast system cameras for the Multicam elements of the show, this year HDR Norway supplied five newly purchased ARRI Amira with DTS 1800 Fiber Systems.

Included in all AMIRA models, the Multicam mode is an extremely attractive option for multi-camera shooting environments such as music concerts and live events, as well as TV soaps and other scripted productions. Multicam is a simple and flexible interface that can be used with virtually any transmission system required. It allows the image parameters of multiple AMIRA cameras to be remote controlled using a Sony RCP (Remote Control Panel), including iris settings. Multi-camera setups can comprise of AMIRAs only or can combine AMIRA with other third-party cameras. Through a Multicam setup, the AMIRA images reveal beautiful skin tones combined with the shallow depth of field of the S35 sensor, unrivalled dynamic range, and natural colorimetry that provides the best production value with the best image quality.

AMIRA under cover

The Multicam moments were shot with the five AMIRAs and captured the exciting competitions or challenges between the athletes. For ETERNAL GLORY the AMIRA cameras all had B4 mounts fitted and used broadcast lenses, for the longer zoom ranges (40x, 22x & 14x Wide). For the individual portraits shot with single cameras in documentary style, the AMIRA cameras had PL Mounts & PL Glass.

Christopher Nichols, the Editing Supervisor for several years on ETERNAL GLORY commented: “I love the Amira pictures; they are the best we have ever had in many years of doing this show.” He particularly appreciated the skin tones and the overall look but especially the dynamic range of the shots. Nichols also mentioned the camera’s lack of noise on location. The team was able to shoot sequences and competitions against the sky and sea with the sun in shot. These types of shots were “burned out” on previous seasons with the broadcast camera channels but not with the AMIRA.

The team was able to shoot sequences and competitions against the sky and sea with the sun in shot.

Geir Ove Ostro, Manager at HDR Norway summarized that there is potential for further camera channels. In his own words: “AMIRA is a genuine Multi-Role Camera, that means good utilization for us as a Rental Company.”

Essentially three cameras in one device, the AMIRA provides consistent, cinematic images for high-quality multi-camera events while also mastering documentary style for television and film as well as scripted productions for smaller crews. Much like the athletes of ETERNAL GLORY, the AMIRA has again proved itself to be a highly durable contender, capable of surviving extreme challenges and the demands of modern productions.

“AMIRA is a genuine Multi-Role Camera” comments Ostro from HDR Norway