Recently saw an interview with cinematographer Jim Frazier, the designer and innovator/pioneer of the Frazier Lens; his work with Attenborough (Life on Planet Earth) among many other projects.As early as the 1970s, Frazier, who with business partner Densey Clyne worked on David Attenborough documentaries, dreamed of devising a "clever" optical system that effectively held everything in the lens's view in complete focus: from the lens surface to the horizon.
Some background regarding the annullment of the US patent of his lens and the subsequent non-genuine, inferior, blatant knock-off copies. The Australian patent was not affected by the OS legal parasites. A brief glimpse of the legal parasite circus here: (what a bunch of clowns!) Who wanted the US patent annulled and why were they prepared to spend millions to do so........
http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2003/05/ ... 85954.html
Jim has now designed a new lens that promises to have a similar impact, being simpler, needing less light and importantly - much cheaper!"When you combine these features it opens up a whole new way of shooting," Frazier explained. "That's what got people excited."
The system was immediately heralded as a major breakthrough and Frazier signed an exclusive licensing deal with Panavision Inc, the leading provider of cameras and lenses to Hollywood. Since then the Panavision/Frazier equipment has been used in thousands of movies and commercials worldwide.
This week, Martin Cayzer, the managing director of Panavision Australia, said he was puzzled by the court finding, which has resulted in the American (though not the Australian) patent of the lens being annulled.
The system has been around for years. It's been hired out - goodness me - thousands of times, and nobody has ever come back and said, 'look, it doesn't work, we want our money back'," says Cayzer.
The Australian Cinematographers Society is also standing by the Frazier lens. "There may be some question over how the lens got a patent. I don't know. But the fact is, it works. It delivers the goods," says the NSW branch secretary, Ian Baseby.
Frazier, who was awarded a Medal in the Order of Australia (OAM), has frequently spoken of his fear of film industry "piranhas" seeking to exploit his invention, and his lawyers have indicated that he will strenuously appeal against the ruling.
Industry insiders say that a long list of eminent movie-makes including Steven Spielberg, James Cameron and Jean-Pierre Jeunet are prepared to testify to the value of the Panavision/Frazier lens.
Hats off to you Jim.
*deleted outdated link and typos