Shooting 29.97 to simulate newscast question

Feel like a total noob asking this, but I am curious to what everyone thinks about this as a solution before our recommendation goes out to production. The client is going for a newscast look and our recommendation was to shoot 29.97p… when I just got off the horn with Extreme Reach they stated that 29.97i was the only way they can receive it.

Is the solution as easy as doing all the work at the native shot format 29.97p (this will be our web delivery), then TW to 50% and then interlace for final broadcast versions? This should give me the correct number of frames and appear accurate right??? Am I losing my mind or is this more complicated than I think it’ll be?

Any suggestions are appreciated.


Great question.

Everybody says they want a newscast look until they see the newscast look. Also, be very very careful as its very likely the someone somewhere won’t accept a 2997 deliverable and will require a 24 and then you are in a world of hurt.

You can always shoot 23.976 and add a 3:2 frame based pulldown, which is the TC Convert Rate tool and basically is a 80% timewarp with Mix set to 0.

You can also add a 3:2 field based traditional pulldown but be wary, VERY wary, people freak out with interlacing and some web deliverables will probably be rejected.

The best thing you can do? Shoot 23.976 with a skinny shutter, add a bit of 3:2, shoot studio lighting, grade it with primaries only, and Fran’s your Nan.

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Thx Randy, really appreciate it. I am triple checking with producer that it’s going to Xtreme Reach right now. If it is in fact, as suspected, going to Xtreme Reach, then they have confirmed a 29.97 delivery is fins.

I find that a frame rate conversion 23.976 to 59.94 via pulldown looks identical to 23.976, and not really the video look they are after. They want the video look (DP is on board as is the agency and client).

All things being equal, how would you recommend getting 29.97p to 29.97i?

Shoot 23.976p. Add 3:2 via Frame Based 80% timewarp to make 29.97p. Add 3:2 field based pulldown to make 29.97i.

Do NOT shoot at 29.97p and make 29.97i. It’s just not worth it.

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If you’re going to do it go all in man. Shoot 5994 and field merge for social and broadcast out in interlace.

Go big or go home.


Chickening out and taking the safe / smart road… 23.976 it is.

They’ll play with shutter angle and a few other things on set tomorrow to help with the ‘video’ look, it just wont come from the frame rate.

Really appreciate the advice guys.

Thx so much

It sounds like you’ve got it under control, but in my experience the newscast look is more about big, flat lighting, long lenses, and long depth of field, plus whatever real-time beauty nonsense the networks put on their anchors.

Find, for example, a movie with a “Daily Show” segment and compare it to a real Daily Show and it probably won’t be the framerate that jumps out at you first.

Good luck!

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On one job, long ago, my client shot film and overcranked to 50 frames (it was a PAL world) and we then interlaced it to 25i for that cringy newscast look, and it worked scarily well. But using film for that, what a waste!


Your frame rate will not create a newscast look. So shooting in 29.97p or 29.97i or doing the add pulldown to 23.98 footage is really not the answer. The newscast “look” is about the lighting. Setting up the lighting so that it mimics a broadcast studio is the way to go. Shooting at 23.98 isn’t going to make the footage look “cinematic”, but it will save you the extra compositing work and the mental frame rate gymnastics.


Reminds me of the day the client wanted a VHS look so I made a copy to vhs and imported it back in. I know I know you’re thinking of a the damage plugin. This was the 90’s in an linear suite.


Those style solutions were always the most fun… and accurate. Did the same thing once onto a 3/4 deck and was constantly jiggling the cables to get the distort look. Nothing beats the real thing!

In the early naughts I did the same thing but in a different quality direction. I had clients who really wanted a genuine print look so we finished the spots in 2k, filmed-out on intermediate and made them a couple prints on 2383 which they tk’d for the final. Spots looked amazing but got killed when the company went bust. Ah, the bubble bust.

This became a thing in Sweden for a while—the printing not the busting.