Welcome to Flatlight FilmsMay 17th, 2011 by admin received Comments Off Tweet
If you’re quite regular in reading Candiesmagazine.com You’d surely noticed about this film company from the cold Rovaniemi in Finland, Flatlight Films. Well since we’re loving these shortfilms we decided to dig a bit under the surface and we had a nice chat with the owner of Flatlight Films, Miikka Niemi. You’ll be stoked to know how these guys are pushing the progress! Start reading!
• Hi Miikka, thank You very much for getting in touch.
Let’s start from the beginning: when did the Flatlight Films project begin to grow in Your mind, and how You’ve been able to turn it out into a real business?
I guess it was a typical story you have in the extreme sports. Just friends starting to film each other and in that way developing into something bigger. If you do something enough you start to get good at it. That what happened. When you gain confidence and skills it also makes you more interested in it. Eventually in 2006 I made the leap and started Flatlight Films. In 2008 we were already making The Scrapbook Project -snowboard documentary. Check out the trailer here:
• I’ve seen a lot of works from Flatlight Films during these years, and I suddenly was impressed by the wide range of subjects caught under your lenses, from snowboarding to freeski, music videos, short films, and ads. This is amazing for sure, since the quality of your videos is outstanding never mind the topic. But I’m just curious, do you ever feel troubled switching from filming a cork9 in the icy mountains and then maybe head to the city for some fashion and hi-tech editing works for some advertising?
I think it’s more of an advantage than trouble. If you’re too close for something you kind of lose the perspective at some point. So doing several totally different productions helps to be keep up the creativity. Moving images are just a great way to express yourself.
Photo by Kalle Tarkiainen www.slammer.fi
• Here at Candiesmagazine.com we’re almost living glued with our laptops and cameras; what’s your feeling with the upcoming technologies in filming and editing? In Your opinion what’s the impact of that on filming industry? There will be a run for the peak level or there are some old techniques that still can’t be replaced?
I’m super stoked on the new technology. I think it’s just a right thing to make this industry way more interesting. In a near future you can produce hi end material with your phones. And actually we even did one TV-production already with Nokia N8 Smart phones. We covered the Snowboarding Finnish Championships with them. Check out the whole TV-show here (http://sm2011.flatlightfilms.com/):
I think in the filming industry there’s still a lot of old ways to do stuff. This new development is giving us alternative ways to produce films. I think there’s always room for old techniques like 16mm film. Actually we just did one music video recently with it. I guess in these digital ages film comes as a way to be different.
• Obviuosly..what’s in your set up at the moment (hardware and software)?
We are using Canon DSLRs in most of the projects these days. I guess they have become industry standard. Also we have Panasonic HVX-200s for some work. GoPro cameras. Flatlight Films has collaboration with Olympus Finland so we have been privileged to use Olympus i-SPEED 3 hispeed camera a lot. It can go up to 2000fps in 720p. For some productions we rent RED camera. We are using Apple computers with Final Cut Studios and Adobe Master Collections.
Skiing picture taken by Ville-Petteri Määttä. Check out his blog blog.ville-petteri.com/
• “Hello” and “Frames”, your shortfilms on freeski and snowboarding was just terrific (see some words HERE). Great riding, sick location (lucky you!) but above all plenty of fresh ideas, new angles, cool tunes! Do you have any other plans for the future in this direction?
I think the snowboard and freeski industry is repeating itself a lot with annual movies. Of course every year there’s some development but in a way to me it’s more important to make it differently. Good example is our freeski project, Nipwitz. We are making 4 videos during the season. Not just a one movie dropping in fall. Nipwitz One:
and Nipwitz Two:
We have a documentary in pre-production about Pekka Hyysalo who was skiing in Hello -shortfilm. During the shoot over a year ago he slammed hard. Now we want to tell he’s story and following he’s recovery. There are some other plans in snowboard and freeski industry as well but I feel like the hardest part is the budget. So only time will tell what’s going to happen…
• We’re watching tons of snowboard video every year, at the end excluding the few really upping the ante, a lot of them look quite the same. Same tricks, same music, well, that’s true, same locations. Do you think snowboarding is getting somewhat stagnant? Are you trying to trace some new path?
I totally agree. I think projects like The Art Of Flight or on the otherhand some webisode type of videos stand out. Doing the same films each year is also a lot about the industry. Riders want they have their own segments and sponsors want it as well. I think it’s just killing the creativity.
• Do you have any projects in other sports like skateboarding or surf?
Would be super nice to do something in skateboarding but we’ll see what happens. In surfing Flatlight Films and Pablo Films are already making together a documentary about surf scene in Finland, Yes, there really is something like that. Check out the Finnsurf -documentary trailer here:
• What are your plans for the future? Are you working on something special that could intrigue our readers?
Flatlight Films as a company is growing. We are doing a lot of projects outside the extreme sport industry but from time to time there might be something for the readers. But remember to check out Nipwitz and Finnsurf documentary.
• Do you have any partners working with you or it is a solo project? I mean both from the contributors side but also from the sponsorship one
It’s more like collective. We have now about 7 people working in the company. Of course in some projects there’s a lot more people involved. Olympus Finland has been supporting us really well so they’re the biggest partner we have at the moment.
• Here’s the end Miikka! Closing credits are for you, trace your line:
I would like to thank all the great people working in Flatlight Films. I wouldn’t be writing this without you. Also great thanks to all the people who had helped me along the way. Many of the projects are made for our fans and viewers. So thanks all of you. Keep spreading the word and have a great summer! Also thank you, for making this interview reality.
Thanks Flatlight Films for these nice words! Follow them on www.flatlightfilms.com