Samsung is showing off the filmmaking capabilities of its Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G phone in a collaboration with acclaimed British director Joe Wright. The brand asked Wright, whose films include "Pride & Prejudice," "Atonement," and "Darkest Hour," and production company RSA Films to make a film entirely shot on the phone, and he came up with a folk tale fantasy called "Princess and Pepper Nose."
The 20-minute film uses puppetry (Wright's parents ran the U.K.'s first dedicated puppet theater), dance and shadow play to tell a fairy-tale-like story. In a new spin on the "Gingerbread Man," it stars a feisty princess who rejects her father's choice of suitors and bakes herself a biscuit version of a husband.
Wright, who was given complete creative control of the project, worked with the Kneehigh Theatre Company to make the film during lockdown in Cornwall at Restormel Castle, with many scenes shot in low light to further showcase the Samsung technology. (See more about it in the Behind the Scenes film below.)
“My only piece of advice for all fledgling filmmakers is that it’s the imagination that is important,” said Wright in a statement. "Everything else should be at the service of the imagination. Imagination is key.”
Cinematography was by Wright’s regular collaborator and Academy Award-nominated director of photography Seamus McGarvey ("Avengers Assemble," "Anna Karenina," "Atonement"). “We’ve had great experimental fun making it, working with shadow play, puppetry and the simplest of moving lights,” said McGarvey in a statement. “It’s very much back to the filmmaking that I started off doing with a Super 8.”
Samsung's project sees it competing with rival Apple, which has also worked with top directors on films designed to show off its technology; for example, in its Chinese New Year film "Nian" shot by Lulu Wang used the iPhone 12 Pro Max, while "La La Land" director Damien Chazelle used the iPhone to capture a genre-spanning vertical film blockbuster.