I have received an email from my good friend Alexander Korobko, Producer, “Russian Hour”, who has looked into the name Black Magic with some depth, here are his findings.
Alexander…”Black magic” has always implied the use of supernatural powers for evil deeds. In modern English that meaning has, perhaps, emasculated and acquired more
ironic “hi-tech wizardry” connotation… That’s why I, like, I guess, most of us, so far haven’t “read” into the odd name, more curious about the magic that the camera itself
promises… And, having placed a deposit (after the recent NAB announcements) for both BMC 4K and pocket cameras, have been worried only about the delivery date.
But then, during the Holy Week (which we celebrate this week according to the old Julian calendar, which our Church follows, my friend Mark, an English convert to
Orthodox Christianity, and I had a discussion about the perception of name “Blackmagic design” from the Christian perspective. We decided to consult a
I spoke to my friend, Father Vadim, a renowned Russian London-based priest, who is neither “alarmist” nor complacent: a good pastor and a kind man. He was not elated with the cameras’ name,
and pointed out that “black magic” still has occult, “dark” connotation. “That is not to accuse the manufacturer of “ill sprit” or anything like that”, – he said, – “but, personally, I would
NOT buy a vacuum cleaner called “Dirt Devil” or wine called “Casillero del Diablo”.
“So, what do you suggest we do with the “Blackmagic” camera, Father?”, – I asked, – “shall I cancel my order?” “It’s what you do with it, son, that matters most”, – he replied.
“But I suggest that upon delivery of the camera, you bring it to a church, sprinkle with Holy water and say an Orthodox prayer for blessing of any object”.
Here it is:
O Creator and Author of mankind, Giver of spiritual graces and Bestower of eternal salvation: Do Thou, the same Lord, send down Thy Holy Spirit, with a blessing from on high, upon this BMC camera,
that, fortified by the might of heavenly protection, it may be potent unto bodily salvation and succor and aid, unto all who shall desire to make use of it, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Through the prayers of our holy fathers, Lord Jesus Christ our God, have mercy upon us and save us. Amen.
“And finally”, – Father Vadim said, – “maybe the manufacturer will consider, at some point, amending the name, especially if the filmmakers, such as yourself, will demonstrate that its capable of the “art of light”,
and not of the dark side”.
So, “what’s in a name? That which we call a rose, By any other name would smell as sweet”… Or not?
I don’t know about you, but I am going to take Father Vadim’s advice. Let’s hope the camera is weather-sealed enough to take sprinkling with Holy water…
Producer, “Russian Hour”
HDW : All I can say to add to the discussion is that BlackMagic Design are evangelists for the creative video world, I now own two of their excellent products and have my name down for a Pocket Cinema Camera which I may add at £665 is a fantastic price and if you want to dip your toe into the world of cinematic look cameras there’s no better time to do so.