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Recalling a technique he had employed while shooting second unit for the hoverboard sequence in Back to the Future II, Burgess had key grip Michael Coo mount a trailer hitch to the back of a Titan crane, to which they attached a long low-boy process trailer. An extension arm added to the Titan brought the crane end out about 20' beyond the chassis and square out over the trailer. A mock-up hook was attached to the end of the Titan arm extension, and Schwarzenegger was wired onto that apparatus, with the low-boy trailer just a few feet below him. Cameras were placed on the trailer, along with the necessary crew and lighting, and the Titan crane drove down the street, pulling the trailer and actor to get the shots of Schwarzenegger hanging on for a wild ride. "It's really just a matter of experience - somewhere down the road you've done something similar, and you can apply that experience to this new problem and see if it works [again]," the cinematographer observes.

During prep, Burgess "pushed the company to test as many of the wardrobe, hairstyles and props as they could possibly get ready. We must have tested 25 different motorcycle helmets alone, just to find the right one. You have to see that stuff on film in order to evaluate it properly. I always like to get the actors standing next to each other on film and test the wardrobe, makeup and hair all at the same time. That way, you get everybody thinking ahead of time. If you wait for principal photography to make those decisions, you'll wind up behind the 8-ball.

"We tested some rear-screen projection using high-definition video playback," he continues, "and although it worked fairly well, it wasn't up to the level I wanted those shots to have, so we rejected the idea. Throughout prep, I carry my Palm-Pilot with me, and every time something new comes up that I think we should test, I jot it down. When the test day arrives, I try to knock off as many things as possible in one session and nail down as many ideas as possible before we have to begin committing resources."

In addition to choreographing the details of tricky action sequences, early decisions had to be made about the details of CG imagery that wouldn't be completed until after principal photography had wrapped. "If there's going to be a CG element that creates some form of lighting, it's best to have that interactive light source actually photographed with the actors, instead of trying to create it all later in post," says Burgess. "Using a practical interactive source gives the actors a much better feel for how to react to what isn't really there. It also helps the director better visualize the timing of the CG element, and it helps the visual-effects artists know what the director and the cinematographer decided on during production. It takes a conscious effort to say in prep, 'Okay, when Kristanna's arm changes into this device, it's going to light up. What color will it be? How bright will it be? Will it pulse or flash?' You have to ask and answer those questions before principal photography begins. I've found that the more interactive light we can actually shoot, the better off we're going to be. That way we know immediately whether it's right, and we can give the CG guys a real thread to work from when they add their magic."

Although Burgess is a fan of anamorphic cinematography, he decided to shoot T3 in Super 35mm and do the anamorphic blowup via a digital intermediate (DI). "Because this was a big action picture that would require lots of cameras and lenses, it didn't make sense to go anamorphic," he explains. "This is the first time I've shot a film that was set to go through a complete DI, and it's been a very interesting process. The DI certainly gives you more control over the image and more ability to tie all the elements together, because you have specific control over any area of the frame. The flip side, however, is that you spend a lot more time doing it. It takes triple or quadruple the amount of time to supervise the process, so it's a bit of a double-edged sword. There also seem to be more people with their hands in the pie; it's not just you and the colorist, and that can get tricky. You have more toys to work with to refine the picture, but you're spending a lot more time and working with a lot more voices to get it done."

Burgess filmed most of T3 on Kodak Vision 200T 5274 - even some night exteriors. "I like that stock a lot. It has a great grain structure, very good blacks and great contrast. For a film like T3, contrast is very important. I used 5274 at night to ensure that we'd have good, rich blacks, and it forced me to light more dramatically than I would have if I'd used [Vision 500T] 5279. The 500 sees more into the shadows and is a lot grainer than the 200; it doesn't reproduce the colors as sharply and crisply. The 200 gave me a much stronger, bolder look that better served the material."

For one night exterior, Burgess used Vision 250D 5246. "During the opening of the film, we see Connor living life beneath society's radar, sleeping along the riverways of Los Angeles. I wanted the foreground to have a warm, fiery feel and the background to be colder, but not extremely cold. The 250 is a contrasty stock with good blacks, and it allowed me to use uncorrected HMI sources in the background, and get a warm look in the foreground with a mix of corrected and uncorrected tungsten sources."

Burgess shoots most of his nighttime photography at around T2.8. "It gives me good depth of field, especially with the wider lenses I tend to use, and it gives me good resolution in the highlights. A T2.8 at 200 [ISO] is a much different look than, say, a T1.4 at 500 [ISO]; that bolder, more contrasty look is what I was going for on this film."

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