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Doctor Who- Season 12

This scene is the climax of Episode 1- Spyfall, and it features a very large character reveal...Spoiler Alert!

“This scene is the climax of Episode 1- Spyfall, and it features a very large character reveal...Spoiler Alert!”

Lens/Camera Information
Lens series: Anamorphic/i
Focus lengths: 25mm, 32mm, 40mm, 50mm, 75mm, 100mm, 135mm
Cooke lens Set 2: S4/i 12mm & 14mm
Non Cooke lens: Angenieux Optimo Anamorphic Zoom 30-72mm, 56-152mm
Original Aspect Ratio: 2:1
Camera: Arri Alexa Mini
Format: Digital
Rental Company:  Films at 59

DOP Information
Director of Photography:  Catherine Goldschmidt
Agent: My Management

Production Information
Production: Doctor Who- Season 12
Producer: Nikki Wilson
Director: Jamie Magnus Stone
Colourist: Gareth Spensley
Production Company: BBC Studios
Distributer: BBC One
Official Dr Who youtube channel

DOP Catherine Goldschmidt on her camera, lens and other kit choices:
“ Doctor Who has obviously gone through many iterations over the years, but stylistically we were taking our cues on Season 12 directly from Season 11, which was the start of Chris Chibnall’s tenure as the series’ Showrunner and Jodie Whittaker as the new Doctor. The choice to use Cooke Anamorphics was honestly one I inherited, but which director Jamie Stone and I were more than happy to embrace. We added the 12mm and the 14mm Cooke S4/i to the mix to ensure we could always go wide enough and close enough- two things we loved doing on the show! Jamie’s favorite spherical lens up until this project had always been the 14mm, which more or less translated to the Cooke Anamorphic 25mm. We frequently used the 25mm with a diopter to get nice and close to our subjects while maintaining the wider field-of-view. This close-presence approach, I believe, makes the shot feel both more intimate and more intimidating to the viewer. I think the audience can feel quite literally how close the camera really is to its subject, and this increases the visual tension, making the shot both exciting and a little scary. It’s also worth noting that we changed the camera this season from the Alexa XT to the Alexa Mini. This allowed for much more flexibility with where and how we moved the camera, due to its smaller form factor.

In this clip from the climax of Episode 1, you can see the photographic approach I’ve described in action. Shooting on a small, cramped airplane set can be tricky, but we used the Arri Trinity rig to track and boom the camera within the confines of the space. As the Master reveals his identity to the Doctor, we track in on a 25mm with a diopter to increase the tension. It’s worth saying that both Sacha Dhawan, the actor, and James Poole, our Trinity Op, as well as the focus puller Steve Rees, all had to work together with a fair amount of trust in this approach to pull it off. I think the visual result, however, really exemplifies the growing sense of claustrophobic terror and dread our characters feel at that moment, so I’m grateful for everyone’s joint efforts to achieve this look. Including, of course, Cooke! The way the lens registers the face with such a wide lens close-up is so unique and so expressive, and I think it really highlights Sacha’s incredible performance in this scene, making him even more dastardly and disturbing.”