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February 2013

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What's Up Doc Ramping up Waiting for Lightning C By DANIEL RESTUCCIO A skater doc, many years in the making. Jacob Rosenberg and Danny Way on-set. 14 ULVER CITY — Jacob Rosenberg, director of the Danny Way documentary Waiting for Lightning, sits in his Culver City office at Bandito Brothers a happy man. For the skateboarder-turnedmoviemaker, the 20-year journey to bring to this true labor-of-love to the screen culminated with a simultaneous theatrical and online release in December. The movie is currently available on iTunes, OnDemand, and the DVD/Blu-ray version with over 90 minutes of behind-the-scenes extras will come out next month. BACK TO THE BEGINNING You can say Rosenberg's journey began in 1992, when the then 19-year-old was filming pro skateboarder Danny Way jumping down handrails in San Diego on his Canon A1 Digital Hi-8 Camera. He had spent the previous three years videotaping skateboarders' stunts and selling the footage to the companies that sponsored them. They in turn sold the videos to fans. One of the pioneers of the new wave of video was a popular skater filmmaker named Mike Ternasky. "I met Mike in 1988 at skateboard camp at Santa Clara University," recalls Rosenberg. "He was the camp director and I was a camper. I wound up breaking my arm and I didn't want to go home, so Mike let me stay and film part of the video he was making about the camp. That's where I got the film bug. " He and Ternasky became close friends and worked together at Plan B films. The master plan was for Rosenberg to go to film school and then the two of them would have their own production company making skate videos and eventually feature films. Rosenberg had even invested his own money in building a nonlinear editing system: a Macintosh Quadra 950 with a Radius VideoVision card in it. "I started to teach myself digital video using Adobe Premiere 3.0." Then the unthinkable happened. On May 17, 1994, at age 27, Ternasky died in a car accident. Rosenberg, along with the entire skateboard community, was devastated. "I was totally destroyed," he recalls. After Mike's death, Rosenberg became close with his brother, who worked at Adobe. After seeing Rosenberg's video work, Joe Ternasky suggested he apply for a job at Adobe beta testing Premiere. And so began Rosenberg's career-long relationship with Adobe. He beta tested software, consulted and became an evangelist for Adobe-based Post • February 2013 Post0213_014-15-WHAT'S UPRAV5finalread.indd 14 post production workflows. Through Adobe, Rosenberg met Mike "Mouse" McCoy and Scott Waugh, two stunt men turned filmmakers, who had just shot a documentary about the Baja 1000 race called Dust to Glory. They asked him to help put the movie together. Rosenberg soon joined McCoy's and Waugh's production company Bandito Brothers ( as the head of post production. His home brew "McGiver- you would want to watch," he says. Like Dust to Glory, the source footage was a mini-history of media: Super 8, 8mm tape, Hi-8 tape, 8mm film, Super 8 film and 16mm film VHS, Super VHS, 3/4-inch, Betacam, Betacam SP, HDCAM, XDCAM, DV, DVCAM, HDV and DVCPRO HD. Rosenberg had set up a dedicated digitizing system in his office: a dual core HP xw8600 with 3.25GB of RAM, a Matrox Axio card, running Adobe Premiere CS3, exporting Bandito Brothers called on the Adobe Creative Suite of tools to help make the project work. esque" approach to post workflows matched their guerrilla production style perfectly. Their shared mantra of applying bleeding edge technology to create high-production value led them directly into producing and creating the innovative feature film Act of Valor in 2010. (See our February 2012 cover story.) EARLY FOOTAGE In 2002, while doing some cleaning, Rosenberg came across his Hi-8/MiniDV deck. He started the process of digitizing old tapes. Jump to 2007: after pro skateboarder Danny Way saw Dust to Glory, he reconnected with Rosenberg. His plan was to make his own skateboard doc. "He was going to do a video celebrating his 20 years as a professional skater, and I definitely wanted to be a part of whatever he wanted to do." Rosenberg pitched his Bandito partners about doing a feature doc on Way. "We felt that we could make a really bitchin' film about his life story that had the type of drama and pull that DV, MPEG and Blackmagic standard definition 720x480 and 1920x1080 HD files. ProRes from the film transfers, DV MOVs and AVIs from archive, CineForm for some source turnover as well as DNxHD175x. GETTING STARTED "One of the first things we did was put together a three-minute pitch trailer to help sell the piece," explains Lance Holte, Bandito Brothers' post supervisor. The trailer combined interviews that Rosenberg shot of Danny Way and fellow trick-skater Bob Burnquist with the archival footage, stills, slides, magazine covers, print ads and motion graphics. It was very After Effects-heavy, according to Holte, who helped with the visual effects and animation work. They made the trailer as a proof-of-concept for DC Shoes, one of Danny Way's merchandizing sponsors. They liked it, but needed more. In July of 2008, Rosenberg made a short film about the X-Games to give 1/24/13 4:58 PM

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