Post Magazine

September 2015

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WEB-BASED SERIES BREAK OUT 29 POST SEPTEMBER 2015 Angeles, where editors got digital dailies the day after the shoot and began cutting on their Avids. Color and finishing were done at Sony Pictures Television. VFX were created by Cutting Edge in Australia and Sony's in-house VFX unit. Aubuchon expects the workflow for Season 2 to remain largely the same, although this season has a slightly looser schedule. Production will wrap in January, and episodes will begin airing next spring. "We're getting an earlier start and know the beast better," he says. He gives kudos to the show's "amazing" post production supervisor, Guin McPherson, for orches- trating a successful debut season. The biggest challenge is likely to remain coordinating VFX in the US and Australia, "knowing what gets shot on-stage or on-location and how it all gets incorpo- rated into the final footage," Aubuchon explains. "We don't have an unlimited budget; we're in new territory with a Web- based series, so coordination is even more vital between the on-site VFX supervisor and the camera department and between on-set VFX and the VFX houses. We've got VFX coordination down to a science, so it will be a smoother ride on Season 2." VFX range from simple set extensions to those superhuman powers the show is named for: Greenscreen shoots involving actors and stunt people on wires are coor- dinated with 2nd unit plate photography to create the elements needed for final compositing. Aubuchon is "very optimistic" about the future of digital programming. "People are involved in creating their own networks, their own schedules to watch on DVR, Roku, Apple TV, PlayStation. As content providers, that's music to our ears. We're ready to produce what audiences want to watch whenever they want to watch it." He says that viewers of Powers go beyond the core audience of PlayStation gamers, broadening the platform's sub- scriber base. "It will be exciting to see what happens next, what new content will be developed for PlayStation." MORGANVILLE All is not as it seems in Morganville, home of Texas Prairie University. New coed Claire Danvers discovers that the town — and everybody in it — is owned by vampires. Talk about a killer freshman year! Based on the best-selling "Morganville Vampires" novels by Texas author Rachel Caine, Morganville (www.morganvillethe- debuted on Geek & Sundry's Premium YouTube channel with a six-epi- sode first season. The show is a three-par- ty coproduction: Blake Calhoun of Dallas- based Loud Pictures directs, produces and edits the show; fan-favorite actor, producer and digital A-lister Felicia Day is the executive producer for Geek & Sundry; and Rachel Caine adapts her own books through her Pen Ultimate Productions. Calhoun is no stranger to digital series, with four or five to his credit, including the pioneering Pink, which debuted on YouTube in 2007. "Eight years is almost a lifetime in the Internet world," says Calhoun. "Pink was shot on HD and uploaded to YouTube in 4:3 letterbox. Now you can put 4K on YouTube. The other biggest change has been show length. Originally, Internet shows ran three to five minutes. Now, 10 to 30 minutes is commonplace. People's attention spans are longer. We produced six shows each about 10-minutes long, and the #1 complaint was that the episodes were too short!" The decision to create 10-minute episodes was intentional. "We construct- ed the script to play as a mini-movie," Calhoun explains. "We have cliffhangers for each episode, but the episodes have been released on DVD and on-demand to play as one show." Calhoun was introduced to Rachel Caine by Felicia Day. He had never done a digital series adapted from another property and was attracted to Morganville, its Texas setting and its built-in fan base. He shot the series in 10 days in the Dallas-Fort Worth area using three Blackmagic Design cameras: a 2.5K Blackmagic Cinema Camera, an early model of the 4K Production Camera, and a Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera for HD drone shots. The production followed a RAW work- flow with a DIT on-set. "We used DaVinci Resolve to create dailies from the RAW files, edited on Adobe Premiere, did a full match back and grading in Resolve, and output 2K ProRes 4444," says Calhoun. "I've shot on Red and a lot of other cameras. RAW workflows are great but typically more costly. But Blackmagic has democratized the process: We got Morganville (here and opposite page) makes use of Blackmagic cameras and DaVinci Resolve.

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