CES: Directors, Cinematographers Endorse "Filmmaker Mode" Setting on 2020 TVs

Set makers including Samsung and LG will support the mode, developed to disable motion smoothing and display movies in the way the filmmakers intended.
THR Staff
UHD Alliance chair Michael Zink at the organization's CES press conference

A rollout of a “Filmmaker Mode” setting on a range of 2020 television models from most major set makers is slated to begin this spring.

There has been concern in the production community that with the many settings available on consumer UHD TVs, the filmmakers' artistic intent is not always what is displayed. Filmmaker Mode is a TV setting that effectively disables post processing such as motion smoothing and aims to give consumers the opportunity to view content in the way that the filmmakers intended, including with the original aspect ratio, color and frame rates.

Its development was announced last August by leading directors including Martin Scorsese, Ava DuVernay, Ryan Coogler, Patty Jenkins and Rian Johnson, who had teamed up with the UHD Alliance, a coalition whose members include Hollywood studios and consumer electronics manufacturers.

On Monday at CES in Las Vegas, the UHDA announced that Samsung, Philips/TP Vision and Kaleidescape have joined the effort and will offer Filmmaker Mode-enabled products this year. Additionally, LG, Panasonic and Vizio — the trio of set makers that previously announced their intent to support Filmmaker Mode — revealed plans for supported 2020 TV models.

LG confirmed that it will include Filmmaker Mode in all of its new 4K and 8K TVs that will be unwrapped in 2020. Panasonic announced a lineup of its 2020 OLED TVs with Filmmakers Mode. Conspicuously absent from the list of set makers that plan to support Filmmaker Mode is Sony, which is a UHDA member company.

Also at CES, the UHDA announced that the Directors Guild of America, the American Society of Cinematographers, the International Cinematographers Guild and Martin Scorsese’s The Film Foundation all endorsed Filmmaker Mode as their preferred method of viewing in the home. Roughly 140 filmmakers, including directors and cinematographers, provided input to its development. In making these announcements, UHDA chair Michael Zink, who is vp technology at Warner Bros., said, "It's important that we respect the filmmakers." The UHDA also said promotional plans are underway.

"With Filmmaker Mode, different works will be presented accurately, as they were created and designed by the filmmaker," said Scorsese in a statement. "Filmmaker Mode is a long overdue and welcome innovation."

Added ASC president Kees van Oostrum: "Filmmaking is a true art form and Filmmaker Mode allows that artwork to be enjoyed as envisioned by the artist not just in the theater, but in the home."

CES runs through Friday.