Interview: Daniel Gurzi, ARC’s New Director of Digital Cinema

Posted in Equipment, Video by Nathan Lee Bush on October 5, 2011

As the photography and film worlds merge, we felt a growing demand from our video customers to offer high end cinema-grade solutions. Daniel Gurzi, formerly at Abel Cine Tech, was recently brought in to head the new Digital Cinema Department. I had a chance to interview Daniel recently about what the new Department offers, where it’s headed, and his vision for the future of camera technology.

Nathan Lee Bush: Why were you brought in to ARC? What niche of gear was missing?
Daniel Gurzi: The film industry is currently in a huge state of flux. Over the past few years, we’ve seen a new wave of cameras every 6 months. On top of that, cameras are cheaper to buy than they have ever been before. Up until the year 2000 over 90% of feature films and TV shows were shot on film. Now, outside of major studio work it has completely flipped the other way. I came to ARC to help navigate through the new technologies and demands on today’s modern filmmaker. Also, the margin between still photography and video is thinning. So as ARC’s wealth of still clients continue to demand video solutions we want to be sure that ARC is always a step or two ahead and prepared for anything.

NLB: Define digital cinema and how it differs from DSLR-centric gear.
DG: There really is no clear cut definition for Digital Cinema. Originally it was thought to encompass all Super 35mm cameras that had digital capture options and used lenses that were traditionally only used for 35 film cameras, i.e. Genesis, F35, REDONE, Phantom. But since 2009 those lines have been ripped away as well. To me, Digital Cinema is the new Film Industry. Essentially any camera being used by a crew of people to capture motion picture falls under the umbrella of Digital Cinema. That means that Digital Cinema includes HDSLRs like the Canon 5D or Nikon D7000, the compact HD cameras like Panasonic’s AF100 or Sony’s F3, Red’s Epic camera, the Alexa by Arri, and even Sony’s new 8K F65 due out by the end of this year.

NLB: What is your vision for the Digital Cinema department? 
DG: My vision is a one stop shop for fashion shoots, feature films, commercials, music videos, students, documentary work and anything else that our creative clientele can come up with. I want ARC to be a rental house for the people and I want it to be super easy to rent from us.

NLB: What can new customers expect in six months or a year’s time?
DG: Essentially, customers can expect a newer face on the still quite new ARC face. We will continue to support and expand our still lines to ensure top notch customer service and advancement in the field. Customers can also expect to come to ARC for just about anything and everything on their job. We are also working on more solutions for G&E support and space to accommodate our growing model.

NLB: What is being done about ARC’s space limitations?
DG: Things are in motion, pun intended. The people that need to know we are short are space know about it. We’re negotiating the adjustments to be sure that our clients get what they need and also that our team has the space necessary to maintain our equipment and expedite the orders.

NLB: Are there distinct advantages for DSLR shooters moving up to digital cinema cameras? 
DG: It gets easier and more complicated as you move “up.” The biggest advantage is that you don’t have to build your rig from scratch. The cameras are built to add a lens, a tripod, and a battery and start shooting. (I know it’s not quite that simple, but it is much more so than current DSLR rigs). The trouble spots are going to be that the higher end video cameras have many more options than DSLRs and in that respect, shooters can find themselves lost a little more easily if they aren’t familiar with certain options.

NLB: Where do you see the technological trends heading in five years? Will we have one piece of kit that does everything?
DG: There will never be an end-all solution. As soon as we got comfortable with 1920×1080 we were hit with 4K. As soon as someone improved on 4K we were teased with 5K and within the same breath we announced 5K shipping and 8K coming in a matter of months. Technology will continue to change. Change is the only thing we can really rely on. Glass will stay relatively the same. We’ll see new comers trying to make glass that matches old glass. As things change, we want to be sure that our clients understand the basic concepts of capturing light and making the images in their heads come out on whatever media is hot at the time.


Also check out an interview with Daniel at the recent Cine Gear Expo 2011:



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  1. […] who is no stranger to experimentation; I interview ARC’s new Director of Digital Cinema, Daniel Gurzi on where the department is heading and what the camera of the future will look like; and we go set […]

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