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DP Christian Sebaldt, ASC, Uses Blackmagic Cinema Cameras on CBS’ “Rush Hour”

Rush Hour

Jon Foo and Justin Hires star in Rush Hour. Photo courtesy of CBS.

Blackmagic Design announced that Christian Sebaldt, ASC, DP on CBS’ new Rush Hour TV show, is using the Blackmagic Cinema Camera PL to shoot selected action, stunt, and car scenes.

Rush Hour is the highly anticipated remake of the film franchise by the same name. With new leads played by John Foo and Justin Hires, the show follows an LA cop teamed up with a detective from Hong Kong. It will include all of the action and comedy that has made the movie franchise so popular.

Sebaldt, who has been the DP for shows and films such as CSI: Crime Scene Investigation and Resident Evil: Apocalypse, alternates with DP Marshall Adams, ASC on Rush Hour.

“We do a lot of up close action scenes. Scenes with the actors moving, fighting, getting thrown around, and jumping on and off moving vehicles. So we need a high-quality camera that can get us dynamic shots, but that also is small and light enough to be rigged in cars or close to the actors,” Sebaldt said. “Every episode has fight sequences and stunts and the Blackmagic cameras are used in most of them.”

One of the recent scenes shot with the Blackmagic Cinema Cameras was an intense car action scene taking place inside an LA-based parking garage. Multiple stuntmen, as well as the show’s lead actor, were thrown into an intense scene that included one of the heroes jumping onto the hood of a moving car with two villains working hard to shake him off.

“We built a mix of handheld rigs and also mounted the cameras to multiple points on the outside of the cars,” Sebaldt said. “The cameras were really right on top of the actors. Because they are so compact, but at the same time super high-quality, we could get right up close to the action. This scene took about four hours to shoot and there’s no easy way we could have done this with bigger and heavier cameras; it would have been too hard to make them safe in the time we had. I was incredibly happy with the images we got.”

Beyond fight scenes, Sebaldt uses Blackmagic Cinema Cameras regularly for in-car shooting, as well as with any shots done in tight spaces where a larger camera cannot fit.

“The Blackmagic cameras give us amazing images, and our grips and rigging guys love that they can set them up anywhere without getting in the way of the acting,” he said. “Based on our initial camera tests and the use on the show, we now have the confidence to use the cameras wherever needed. Our colorist tells me the footage integrates easily with our main cameras.”

Rush Hour is being put together by Bill Lawrence (creator of Scrubs and Cougar Town), Executive Producer Steve Franks (creator of Psych), and Blake McCormick (one of the writers of Cougar Town). Together, Franks and McCormick are also writers for the series.

Additionally, the original movie’s director, Brett Ratner, will step on to executive produce the series—along with Arthur Sarkassian—the original producer of all the Rush Hour movies.

The show is set to premier on CBS in 2016.

December 1, 2015