Post Magazine

JUNE 2011

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 3 of 51

editor’s note One show, many formats By RANDI ALTMAN EDITOR-IN-CHIEF use a multitude of digital cameras, including the Arri Alexa, the Canon 5D and 7D, the Sony F- 900s, JVC’s GY100 and even GoPro cameras. This makes for an interesting post process. All C files are processed internally at DigitalFilm Tree in Hollywood, which they uniform to an offline ProRes LT file that is provided to the show's edi- tors.“They lock in Final Cut Pro, they send us the FCP project file,we do the online, which allows us to bring in all the material at full resolution, digitiz- ing off of SR tape at 10-bit uncompressed,” re- ports DigitalFilmTree's Patrick Woodard, who is colorist for NCIS: Los Angeles. He describes what it's like to deal with all these these different formats. “NCIS: Los Angeles shoots directly to SxS cards with the Alexa.Those files are ProRes HQ because sometimes they want to be untethered from the deck when using a run and gun style.They also shoot on Canon cameras — I use a program 5DtoRGB by Rarevi- sion, which transcodes it from H.264 to ProRes HQ.Those files go into the online.We do a similar process from the GoPro files, whose native files are H.264.We convert them to ProRes HQ. POST SCRIPT Pitching and competition T his month, Post had a chance to speak with a number of studios that are helping net- By MARC LOFTUS SENIOR EDITOR works and television shows establish unique identities through visuals. Broadcast design is an art, as many will attest, with the goal of creating or identifying a brand through stylized imagery, much of the time relying on CG. As interesting as it is to hear about how facili- ties attack these creative challenges, what came up time and time again when speaking with pros this month was how competitive this segment of the business is, often pitting as many as a dozen facilities against each other — with almost no budget to create a pitch — to secure the job. Scott Matz, with NYC’s Thornberg & Forester, says his facility’s reel and Website are not enough to secure a job.They’re only enough to get an invitation to compete for one.And with powerful post tools, such as Adobe’s Creative Suite, available to designers for such an affordable price, sometimes the competition is simply a guy working in his garage. Chris Roe of Fish Eggs in Santa Monica was one of those guys, up until he set up his formal 2 Post • June 2011 BS’s NCIS: Los Angeles, which just com- pleted its second season, has an ambi- tious way of capturing the show — they Sometimes they shoot film and we digitize that.” Once the online in FCP is completed, the en- tire timeline is either 10-bit uncompressed or ProRes HQ.“After that I export a self-contained QuickTime at 10-bit uncompressed and bring that into the Blackmagic DaVinci Resolve and use an EDL to place the cut points — that gives me the ability to grade on a shot-by-shot basis at 10- bit uncompressed,” describes Woodard. Because the show is shot on location at many locales throughout LA, the look of the series changes from episode to episode, making com- munication with NCIS: LA DP Victor Hammer es- sential for Woodard. “The DP and his DIT, John Mills, create a LUT on set, which we bake into the dailies, but it's also a guide on how to go on scene. I can tell if they go warm, if they go cool, if they go saturated.” In Resolve he can pull up the edit and see what the DP's intention was for that scene, and that gives Woodard guidance to start color grading on the raw files. But when looks get a little more complicated, Hammer and Mills will call with more detailed direction. An even with the show’s hectic production sched- ule, Hammer sits in regularly on color sessions at DigitalFilm Tree. EDIT ORIAL RANDI ALTMAN Editor-in-Chief (516) 797-0884 MARC LOFTUS Senior Editor (516) 376-1087 KEN MCGORRY Consulting Editor CHRISTINE BUNISH Film& Video RON DICESARE Audio BOB PANK European Correspondent DAN RESTUCCIO West Coast Bureau BARRY GOCH West Coast Blogger/Reporter IAIN BLAIR Film MICHAEL VIGGIANO Art Director AD VER TISING MARI KOHN National Sales Manager (818) 291-1153 cell: (818) 472-1491 GARY RHODES Eastern & Intl Sales Manager (631)274-9530 cell (516)410-8638 CHRIS SALCIDO Account Manager (818) 291-1144 CUSTOMER SERVICE 620 West Elk Ave, Glendale, CA 91204 (800) 280 6446 opt 2 (publishing), opt 1 (subscriptions) shop just over six years ago. He recalls some of the early pitch meetings he attended while working out of his “smaller” space. One was for work on Season 5 of Fear Factor. He knew he was competing against bigger facilities with proven track records.While waiting to be brought into the pitch meeting, he overheard executives talking.“Who’s this guy?” one asked. “He’s the guy in the garage,” exclaimed another. It was then that Roe realized how important it was to have a formal setup, with the competi- tion being so heated. Years later he can joke of the experience. In fact, a few years back, while working on the refreshed American Gladiators, an EP that he had worked with on Fear Factor recalled the incident and said they appreciated the fact that he was sort of a hidden jewel back then — a hard- working independent who was less expensive compared to larger and more established facili- ties.Today, Roe says Fish Eggs continues to “keep it lean,” knowing where the competition can come from. See our “Broadcast Design” fea- ture on page 16. REPRINTS Reprints (781) 255-0625 • (818) 291-1153 LA SALES office: 620 West Elk Avenue, Glendale, California 91204 (800) 280-6446 WILLIAM R. RITTWAGE President / CEO See us on Post Magazine is published by Post, LLC,a COP communications company. Post does not verify any claims or other information appearing in any of the ad- vertisements contained in the publication, and cannot take any responsibility for any losses or other damages incurred by readers in reliance on such content. Post cannot be held responsible for the safekeeping or return of unsolicited articles, manuscripts, photographs, illustrations or other materials. Subscriptions: Address all subscription correspondence to Post Magazine, 620 West Elk Ave, Glendale,CA 91204. Subscribers may also contact customer service at (800) 280 6446, opt 2 (publishing), opt 1 (subscriptions) or send an email to For change of address please include the old and new address information, and if possible, include an address label from a recent issue. Subscriptions are available free to qualified individuals within the United States. Non-qualified 1 year rates: USA $63.00. Canada & Mexico $94.00. All Other Countries $133.00.Airmail Delivery is available for an additional $75.00 annually. Postmaster: Send address changes to Post Magazine, P.O. Box 3551, Northbrook, IL 60065-3551. Please send customer service inquiries to 620 W. Elk Ave., Glendale,CA 91204

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of Post Magazine - JUNE 2011