I like to cover RED stuff here at CrunchGear, because I just like the idea of complacent industries getting kicked the pants by a newcomer. There have been innumerable delays and price hikes, but the RED line of professional digital cameras has impressed some of the big names in cinema from the start — perhaps most famously Peter Jackson, whose “Crossing The Line” short demonstrated the capability of the early models. He’s come back for more now, and will be shooting The Hobbit on no less than thirty of the latest RED Epic cameras.
RED’s founder, Jim Jannard, announced the news in the reduser.net forums as usual, and followed it up with the news that the long-awaited Epic cameras would have limited availability in December for a standalone $58,000 each, a refreshing departure from the labyrinthine upgrade options of the past.
The cost of the cameras, plus lenses and accessories to outfit them, probably exceeds $2 million, but what deal might have been cut with Jackson isn’t clear. Personally, I’m thinking he got a major bargain, considering Jannard has said The Hobbit is his favorite book, and Jackson has done much to advance RED’s business before now.