With a sharp eye on the thriving local film industry, camera equipment manufacturer Sigma Corp., better known for making lenses compatible with other companies’ cameras, recently opened a showroom in Burbank.
“We finally ventured into cinema, so it was inevitable that we had to be in the heart of the industry,” said Mark Amir-Hamzeh, president of Sigma Corp. of America, the store’s parent company.
Sigma, family-owned and based in Japan, is a newcomer to the cinema-lens industry but has a long history of creating still-camera lenses and flashes, along with other photographic accessories that fit brands like Canon, Nikon, Sony and Panasonic.
Cine-operations specialist Aubrey Duclos said that although the company has been making cine lenses for only two years, Sigma has 57 years of experience in high-quality lens manufacturing.
The local store’s focus, according to Duclos, will be as a tool and resource center for the filmmaking community.
“It’s a showroom open to the public, a space for events, galleries and options for people to learn, educate and collaborate,” she said.
“It seems to be an ideal area to be close to other camera and lens manufacturers and all the studios, to be able to showcase our products,” Amir-Hamzeh added.
Sigma Burbank is not just a showroom, Amir-Hamzeh said.
“It’s a complete facility. We have customer service and support for products. We have a warehouse where we are able to ship to our West Coast dealers,” he said.
“Also, we have a space where local photographers and cinematographers can have an area to be able to interact and have opportunities to try the Sigma lenses and see firsthand what the Sigma philosophy and what their passion of photography and cinematography is all about at Sigma,” Amir-Hamzeh added.
Duclos said that “Burbank is very practical. Hollywood works in Burbank.”
In terms of classes, the location is “open for whatever the demand is, heavy on cine, but we want to have some for the photographers, too,” Duclos said.
Sigma Corp. is located at 148 S. Victory Blvd., Burbank.