1954 : Cinemascope camera

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Among cinematographic equipment on board the Calypso in 1954 appears a strange thing, perfectly experimental: a kind of ancestor of the cameras used decades later by Christian Petron for shooting “The Big Blue”. This camera, equipped with an anamorphic device, provides images in Cinemascope format. It is housed in a parallellipipedic box-shaped brass extended by a window of large diameter at the end of a tapered extension. This box, also designed by Henri Girardot, is to be inflated with air. This camera project inspired by director Marcel Ichac does not allow the use of wide-angle objectives short focal length needed for underwater views. It will be dropped after the mission.

On the left, the cinemacope camera on deck of Calypso, in 1954 during Suez Canal crossing (photo André Laban)


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