For the past 3 years, Apple has been commemorating the Chinese New Year by releasing a #shotoniphone short film. Looks like it is becoming a new tradition, because this year is no exception. Apple has just released A Nian, a short 12-minute Chinese New Year film, shot completely on iPhone 12 Pro Max.

This short motion picture gives us a fresh take on a traditional Chinese New Year legend about the monster named Nian, who every year would come down from the mountains to destroy the crops and terrorize the people. The main character of this coming-of-age picture is a little girl who befriends this mythical creature and is coping with her fantasies, fears and adulting. It was created by the same team that stood behind the 2019 Golden Globe-nominated American comedy drama The Farewell.

Apple also has released a Behind The Scenes video, where they share a creative process, what type of additional gear and accessories they used. From this BTS video it is quite clear that filming team avoided using external lenses with the iPhone, concentrating only on the capabilities of the iPhone’s native cameras.

However, we can clearly see that supporting gear plays a huge role in controlling and handling these mobile devices in the filming process, the same way as with a professional market with larger equipment. Like in all previous films curated by Apple, we are super stoked to be a part of this project. From the BTS video you can see that the filming team utilized our Beastgrip Pro combined with all other grips, magic arms and accessories to build their handheld rigs. 

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They also used clamps and gimbals to achieve creativity to tell you this story through the lens of the iPhone 12 Pro Max. They also share with us some interesting and creative approaches that were possible because of the small footprint of the device, like submerging the phone into the water, attaching it to the chopsticks or to a wheelchair to achieve the rolling effect. All this showcases how flexible this device is and how it can be utilized in all kind of scenarios by either building up and rigging up a really powerful handheld rig that allows to utilize all other equipment or simply using a device itself in a places and spots where it would be impossible with larger cameras.

As always, we are incredibly proud to play our little part in this project.

You can also check out all the previous Apple’s Chinese New Year movies below:

Chinese New Year - Daughter - Apple

Chinese New Year – The Bucket – Apple

Chinese New Year – Three Minutes – Apple

January 30, 2021 — Taras Chulianchyk
Tags: Filmmaking