Producer from NY using an iPhone to create TV pilot in Paris

Sandy Kenyon Image
Tuesday, December 19, 2023
Producer from NY using an iPhone to create TV pilot in Paris
Sandy Kenyon speaks with the producer on his new pilot series.

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- It's been almost a decade since the first feature film was shot using an iPhone and phones have improved dramatically since "Tangerine" was released back in 2015.

So, it was inevitable TV producers would turn to this technology to save time and money.

When I was 9 years old, watching a film crew outside my apartment building on the Upper East Side inspired me, and got me excited about going into show business. Up until now, the sight

of moviemakers at work hasn't changed that much.

Hollywood on the Hudson means massive trucks, big crews, and catering to accommodate them.

There's no parking there right now and you have to watch out for those cables, which can lead to complaints from local residents, but a guy from Cos Cob found a better way to work thousands of miles from here in Paris.

Steven Bawol is a veteran TV producer who is shooting his latest pilot using iPhones, just like the ones so many of us carry around every day.

"It offers another way of making shows that are cost-effective and also have tremendous production value," Bawol said. "You can shoot a lot quicker and you can pretty much be in locations you know where people don't even notice you're shooting."

A killer named "Reaper" stalks a cop on an iPhone, shot by half a dozen similar devices.

"You get the same results with a lot less people, a lot less equipment, and a lot less time," Bawol said.

The same results? C'mon - really? How can Bawol be so sure?

"We have shot a couple of series where we've used large cameras and iPhones at the same time. We've put those shots together and put them on a movie screen and up on a movie screen the quality is unbelievable and you cannot tell the difference between the large cameras and the iPhones," Bawol said.

Recent history shows that technology will only improve, meaning Hollywood can now be everywhere.

"Because the beauty of this system is you can take it anywhere in the world and shoot anyplace you want," he said.

Making TV shows this way is also a lot better for the environment because producers are not using as much energy to do their work. Smaller crews with less equipment mean less pollution, and that benefits everyone.


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