Camera slates that mark the start of a movie or TV shot are being
given a fresh take by Burbank resident Kevin Ivey, whose company
makes versions of the items using an innovative digital method to
transfer logos to plexiglass.
The slates, which include a clapper at the top, are typically hit
by the second camera assistant after the assistant director calls
“roll sound,” Ivey said. Because sound and image are taped and filmed
separately, the clapping sound signals to editors how to sync the two
in post production.
Ivey, a camera assistant on films that include Warner Bros.’
“Cradle 2 the Grave,” said he started making the plexiglass devices
as a hobby. But he said the response he received was so strong that
he began producing and selling them last year as Ivey Slates.
Camera assistant Jay C. Hager bought them for Warner Bros.’
“Terminator 3" and Universal’s “The Italian Job.”
The slates Ivey produced for “The Italian Job” are “a beautiful
thing,” according to Hager.
“We used to have to pull each letter off and individually stick
them on,” he said. “You can give him the artwork to any show [and]
... he can scan out multicolored images.”
Other slates on the market have the names of the show or film
engraved on plexiglass, Ivey said. But those, he added, are not as
durable as his because the engraving weakens the board, and they
feature full color logo reproductions.
“People also buy them as gifts,” Ivey said. “Arnold
[Schwarzenegger] bought 12 himself, to auction for charity.”
The custom film slates are available by contacting Ivey at