Award-Winning Documentary "Cartel Land" Shot on the Canon EOS C300 / Behind The Scenes

The Canon C300 has been the most popular camera to rent in the UK in the past year, according to a Televisual report, and that's no surprise. The ergonomic form factor, a wide range of Canon EF lens support with Dual-Auto Focus and image stabilisation, combined with a robust, broadcast approved on-board codec and affordable media, makes the Canon C300 a no-brainer for documentary production, corporate and a wide range of broadcast work.

canon EOS C300 camera

Recently, Canon Professional, released a behind the scenes video of Director/Cinematographer Matthew Heineman who takes us behind the scenes at the making of Cartel Land, a documentary de-glamorizing the Mexican drug trade.

The winner of the Sundance Directing Award for U.S. Documentary and the Documentary Special Jury Award for Cinematography, Matthew captured aerials with a Canon Cinema EOS-1D C and relied on the EOS C300 with lens stabilization to capture his vérité-style imagery.

The production mainly used a barebones Canon EOS C300 with a Canon 17-55mm f2.8 IS USM EF-S lens, which is a very high-quality lens for documentary production due to the good zoom range, fast aperture and image stabilisation. The other lens used by the team was the Canon EF 24-105mm f4 IS, which again has a fantastic image stabilisation which can work wonders in video mode.

The low-key setup contributed to the visceral and raw feel of the film and propelled the story forward by placing the viewer inside the action. At NAB this year, Canon announced the successor the original C300, the Mark II, which is capable of recording in 4K on-board CFast 2.0 cards, as well as High frame rates in Full HD, and Raw output to external recorders. The new Canon EOS C300 Mark II is sure to become a documentary and broadcast production workhorse, but it has yet to see the light of day. Canon say it is estimated to start shipping towards August/September.

However, even though the original C300 is limited to acquiring in Full HD and only 50Mb/s, it is a proven workhorse, used on a multitude of a very wide range of productions, from low-budget productions to bigger budget broadcast shows and award-winning feature films and documentaries. Production companies, commissioners, producers and broadcasters love the easy and proven workflow that the MXF file structure offers and the wide variety of native Canon EF or third party EF glass like the Ziess Compact Primes that can be used with the C300.

We currently supply both the original C300 EF with the DAF upgrade, both brand new and also used, in addition to taking orders for the C300 Mark II, due for release in the upcoming months. Do get in touch with our Canon Specialists at 0208 977 1222 to place your order.

In the meantime, check out the trailer for the fascinating "Cartel Land" below: