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  1. #1
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    The BBC obsession with Pacemaker Graphics

    A recent episode of a BBC drama had a few scenes with press photographers and Crown or Speed Graphics, in one sequence there were about half a dozen cameras. Now if this was a US made TV series that might be accurate but very few Pacemaker cameras were imported into the UK and by the 1960's other cameras were the mainstay of British press photographers.

    Realisticly there may have been a few MPP MicroPress cameras and Rolleiflexes, even the odd Nikon, possibly a Leica, and a few pre-WWII LF reflex cameras with fast lenses. But there would have only been the occasional Graflex.

    Anyone else spot this ?

    Ian

  2. #2
    polyglot's Avatar
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    Maybe the BBC has a stack of them in the props cupboard that it otherwise doesn't know what to do with?

  3. #3
    munz6869's Avatar
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    I watched the first of the Jon Pertwee/Dr. Who episodes (again!) recently, and the press photographers in the hospital appeared to be equipped with Rolleiflex cameras...

    Marc!
    Marc Morel
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  4. #4
    lxdude's Avatar
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    Here in the US it does seem like the Graphics are the press camera of the old days in movies depicting a certain time period. It's not inaccurate, but old time press photographers have told me that a lot used Rolleis for much of their work, if not all, because of weight and bulk benefits, plus ease of handling film. Press photographers did not spend all their time popping flashes at dead bodies and arrested suspects; especially in rural areas much of their work was of more ordinary happenings- the Mooselick County Rutabaga Queen, the old lady who turned 100, the new mayor shaking hands with his predecessor in front of City Hall, stuff like that. Not to forget Roy Bick's turnip that looked like a two-headed pig.
    I do use a digital device in my photographic pursuits when necessary.
    When someone rags on me for using film, I use a middle digit, upraised.

  5. #5

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    What I hate is the way they seem to always rack the bellows out to the end of the track instead of stopping at the infinity stops.

  6. #6

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    Talking about cameras in the movies. I recently heard something recently about the famous photographer who photographed Ghandi. She used a Graflex (speed? Crown?) and when Candice Bergan (sp?) portrayed her in the Ghandi movie she was apparently well trained to handle the camera appropriately so it looked realistic.

  7. #7
    lxdude's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prof_Pixel View Post
    What I hate is the way they seem to always rack the bellows out to the end of the track instead of stopping at the infinity stops.
    Ain't that the truth!

    Reminds me of the motorless F3's, FM's etc., having a motorized advance dubbed in-and it's not even the crisp advance of the right motors, but a drawn-out advance sound from I guess some cheap camera!
    Last edited by lxdude; 11-21-2012 at 02:08 AM. Click to view previous post history.
    I do use a digital device in my photographic pursuits when necessary.
    When someone rags on me for using film, I use a middle digit, upraised.

  8. #8
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prof_Pixel View Post
    What I hate is the way they seem to always rack the bellows out to the end of the track instead of stopping at the infinity stops.
    For once they didn't However in one shot the photogrrapher has the rear sight for the Wire finder up but not the front frame, and the camera looks like it's at Infinity bfocus for some relatively close shots.

    The series is actually made for the BBC by an outside company, the scenes in question are suppoedly late 1957, I'd assumed a little later when starting this thread. Pacemaker Graphics were only just being imported into the UK as there had been severe import restrictions of goods made abroad. Graflex had got around this by supplying the parts to make the MPP MicroPress - effectively a Speed Graphic in a UK made wooden body.

    Ian

  9. #9
    Steve Smith's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by polyglot View Post
    Maybe the BBC has a stack of them in the props cupboard that it otherwise doesn't know what to do with?
    I could give them a suggestion!


    Steve.
    "People who say things won't work are a dime a dozen. People who figure out how to make things work are worth a fortune" - Dave Rat.

  10. #10

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    Is this "The Hour" Ian? I think I recall seeing a sports viewfinder in something recently. If it was "The Hour" then watch out in future episodes( tonight maybe) for the female producer checking what looks like 35mm film which I suspect is meant to come from the 4x5 press cameras but I might be wrong

    Surely even the BBC wouldn't get this wrong?

    pentaxuser

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