Sean Baker’s “Tangerine” may have failed to garner any Oscar nominations, but it is about to get something even better: A permanent spot in the new Academy Museum. The Academy has officially acquired one of the iPhones Baker and cinematographer Radium Cheung used to film the groundbreaking 2015 indie hit. The film was shot with three iPhone 5s smartphones.
Although “Tangerine” was not the first feature made entirely using an iPhone camera, it was inarguably the most successful and high profile release of its kind. The movie made a big splash at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival before landing two Gotham Award wins and an Indie Spirit Award for supporting actress Mya Taylor.
Baker and Cheung used the iPhone camera and the video app FiLMIC Pro to shoot “Tangerine.” The app allowed the filmmakers to better control the focus and aperture of the ipHone camera. An anamorphic adapter was attached to the phone to shoot in widescreen, while a Steadicam was also used to capture the many tracking shots.
To announce the acquisition of the “Tangerine” iPhone, the Academy issued the following video: