Basingstoke, 7th April, 2017: Sony has today revealed that Marcel Wachter is the official winner of its FS7 II Documentary competition for his entry ‘The Last Blacksmith’. Acclaimed cinematographer Philip Bloom chose Marcel for his 60-second documentary that told the story of the last Blacksmith in a village in Romania. He has been awarded a brand new PXW- FS7M2K, the ultimate documentary filmmaking camera. The competition was designed to bring creative documentary storytelling to the forefront of filmmaking.
Marcel’s entry tells the poignant story of Danut Mihai, the last blacksmith in Eftimie Murgu, as he philosophises about how a generation of blacksmiths is disappearing and reflects on his own life. “The Last Blacksmith combines a strong story that is filled with interest and emotion, with stunning visuals,” said Philip Bloom, freelance cinematographer and competition judge. “The 60-seconds finished and I was left wanting to know more about Danut and what he does. Congratulations to Marcel, his entry is both powerful and beautiful.”
“Telling an emotional story that moves people is very important to me,” said Marcel Wachter. “I wanted to show how old people in Romania’s countryside live and think in as raw a way as possible. It was a real challenge to achieve this within one minute, but I feel that I succeeded. It was difficult not having built-in ND filters which limited me to mostly shooting inside, so I am happy that in the future I will be able to use my prize, the Sony FS7 II, with its incredible features to adapt to almost any shooting environment. Winning this competition means a lot to me. I’m still at the beginning of my filmmaking career and it feels great that other professionals have appreciated my hard work.“
The runner up was Hubert Napierała for his entry ‘Mia the biker dog’ which tells the story of Michal and dog Mia on one of their much-loved motorbike adventures through woodland roads and Polish towns. The film used memorable colour and contrast that added to the warm and comforting story of the two friends. Philip Bloom praised the film for its terrific visuals, clever editing and incredibly likeable characters that drew him in. Philip also highly commended the work of Juan Carlos Fita Plannells for his compelling entry, ‘Red Gold’.
“There was a really high standard in the competition, which made it difficult to pick my favourites,” said Philip Bloom. “Some of the films had incredible visuals but didn’t have the story to back it up, some had a really interesting story but the visuals weren’t there for me. I selected Marcel as the winner and Hubert as the runner up because they really delivered on both.”
Entrants to the competition were asked to upload a one-minute documentary clip to YouTube that showcased their storytelling skills. The eligible videos that received the most YouTube likes between 1st March and 12th March were shortlisted. Renowned filmmaker Philip Bloom then selected a winner based on the individual’s ability to convey a memorable story in just 60 secondsi. The documentary topics were wonderfully varied, from an underwater close up of a man that dives with whales, to an explosive bread baking demonstration, to an interview with a yo-yoing expert.
The competition was held in recognition of the recently released PXW-FS7M2K. The camera builds on the successes of the original PXW-FS7 and is optimised for long-form shooting and production applications. The experience and expertise Sony has in developing camcorder technology means shooting with the PXW-FS7M2K delivers truly breath-taking 4K imagery, making it the ideal companion for documentary filmmaking.
“We wanted to run a competition that would encourage the creativity of documentary filmmakers, and we were blown away by the quality and variety of incredible entries we received,” said James Leach, European Product Marketing Manager, Sony Professional Solutions Europe. “I echo Philip Bloom’s praise of Marcel and Hubert’s entries and it’s great to be able to reward them with cameras in recognition of their show-stopping entries.”
iJuan Carlos Fita Plannells was originally named the runner-up of the competition, but following a technical error in the system that was used to count the increase in likes for the entries submitted between 1st March (or the submission date) and 12th March, the shortlist had to be recalculated. Red Gold did not make it to the final shortlist but regardless judge Philip Bloom’s praise of this fantastic documentary stands, and Juan will retain his prize of a Sony A7S II full-frame camera.