A quote from Steadicam inventor and operator Garrett Brown contained in an 11-month-old Pajiba.com article by Cindy Brown suggests that Warner Bros. Home Video and former Stanley Kubrick assistant and confidante Leon Vitali erred when they decided to master the 2011 Bluray of The Shining at a 1.85 to 1 aspect ratio. I don’t know the source of the Garrett quote (obviously not Brown), but he is quoted saying that Kubrick, director of The Shining, “insisted [that] every image be framed in [a] 1.66:1 ratio.”


Brown had “many, many arguments” with Kubrick over the camera’s crosshairs being in the middle of frame,” the article states. Kubrick’s order was that “if it hit on an actor’s left nostril, that’s exactly where it had to be [because] framing had to be symmetrical. Kubrick insisted every image be framed in 1.66:1 ratio, something between widescreen and Cinemascope [so that] people fill the frame.”

If valid, the Brown quote would be analogous to Kubrick’s famous 12.8.75 letter to projectionists (provided by Jay Cocks, posted by Glenn Kenny) stating unequivocally that Barry Lyndon was shot at 1.66 and that it should be projected at this aspect ratio, “and in no event at less than 1.75 to 1.” This contradicted a 2011 claim by Vitali that the proper Barry Lyndon aspect ratio was 1.77, which is how the 2011 Bluray was issued.