Look Behind the Camera of a Two-Minute Steadicam Shot in 'Hugo'

May 30, 2012
Source: The Playlist


Aside from P.T. Anderson, one of the filmmakers better known for some impressive, elaborate, single-take, tracking shot sequences is Martin Scorsese. The opening of GoodFellas is the most prominent one that comes to mind, but there's another fantastic piece of cinematography from the closing of Scorsese's Best Picture nominated film Hugo. A single, steadicam shot walks us through George Melies house during a celebration showing us all our main characters and wrapping up the story in a charming package. Now a new video let's us be a fly on the camera as it sweeps through the set for this perfectly choreographed scene.

Here's this awesome behind-the-scenes video from Martin Scorsese's Hugo via The Playlist:

It's great to see the inner-workings of the set with the crew moving quickly in and out of the room, moving entire walls, and extras quickly moving past the camera once they're off-screen. Plus, it just goes to show you how much work goes into a short sequence and all of the post-production efforts that go into making this shot look even more seamless. From Chloe Moretz, Asa Butterfield, Sacha Baron Cohen, Emily Mortimer and Ben Kingsley nailing their marks to all the boom mike operators sweeping in and out of sight, it's like watching a dance number. For those curious how they captured this, Steadicam operator Larry McConkey put a GoPro camera on top of his own and Scorsese was awesome enough to let it happen.

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  • Ehsan Davodi
    Asa Butterfield was phenome (for me) cant wait for Great Scorsesse`s" Irishman " with His Gigantic Stars : Robert DeNiro..........Al Pacino.............Joe Pesi
  • Harry
    This is the art of cinema at its very best. As a filmmaker, it makes you appreciate and stare in awe as the scene progresses. Truly remarkable
  • clinteastwoodscloset
    Thanks for posting! This video is a must see for filmmakers.
  • "5 or 6 more and we should be good"lol
  • Iofhsd
  • Cufford
    Nice yeah. Unsurprisingly, the author of this post doesn't mention that Quintin Tarantino is actually more noted for the most remarkable of these kinds of shots that that boring, old, grey-haired Scorcesse. Of course, "Tarantino" isn't "Scorsese", though he's probably a much better film maker to many, so I guess he doesn't rate with mainstream film bloggers who are more interested in appearing to comply with the conventional wisdom, than actually having...you know, an educated opinion of their own. Might have been nice to give a hat tip to Tarantino here. Oh wait, that would have required some actual knowledge and thought about the film industry, rather than just jumping on the conventional wisdom bandwagon, which most sites like this typically do.
    • Terry Craig
      You are an ignorant fool, boy. People like you make other, more educated Tarantino fans look bad. Martin Scorsese is one of the greatest filmmakers of all fucking time, and he's been making amazing steadicam shots from his very first movie in 1967, before QT was even born. And before Scorsese there was Orson Wells who's made an infamously long opening shot in Touch of Evil. Why didn't you want him to be mentioned? Or Kubrick for using the steadicam as we know for the very first fucking time in The Shining? Also, Tarantino is an auteur just like Scorsese, but he's happily become part of pop culture and the mainstream, so he doesn't even need a hat tip. So just broaden your horizon beyond your beloved Quentin, and thank the writer of this article for telling us about this amazing video.
    • Bobo34
      Yeah, nice! Hey Cufford, know what Tarantino's favorite film of all time is? Taxi Driver. Ever hear of it? Know who directed it? Terry Craig is right. You boy.
  • Alecasand
    Cuffor, you just deserve a couple words, shut the fuck up, I like Tarantino, but you are an poor ignorant. 
  • Benr4888
    Just wanted to ad  Altman's opening scene in "The Player"
  • Toto_d
    Shaking too, too much.
  • Chieflife
    Micheal bay woulda blew that whole set up just because! tarantino woulda had some blood , and elvis is still alive!




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