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September 2017

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DEPARTMENT 21 POST SEPTEMBER 2017 chew through information." Although Safdie says, "maybe next time we'll figure out a way to edit in a limited form while we're shooting," he and Bronstein like "the idea of editing after the fact. It's like getting a fresh start." A lot of the mood of the crime drama was cap- tured in-camera. "Josh and Sean and the amazing gaffers really lit the darkness," says Safdie. "So in post production it was a matter of fine tuning that look." Bronstein says, "This script was much more locked down than those for our previous pictures. Before, there were more outlines and improvised dialogue. This script was tight; the action required tight construction plotwise. But there was still room to indulge in some experimentation." The filmmakers consider editorial "a phase where rewriting and reshooting are open to us once we hit the first rough cut," he says. "That's incredibly liberating because we never feel obli- gated to include in the cut anything that doesn't meet our standards. The first rough cut has a lot of ellipses. Then we find ways to fill the holes and connect the dots. Although we needed to finish in time for Cannes, we always take as long as it takes until the film looks great." Good Time moved to New York City's Technicolor PostWorks ( for finishing. The facility scanned the film at 4K based on the editors' EDL. Colorist Jack Lewars, who manned Autodesk Lustre, "really understood where we wanted to push things, what we wanted to achieve to make the film look even more perfect," says Safdie. "We couldn't get more out of the film on our side, but Jack was able to pull out a lot more detail — he had a lot more control of the color. If we even hinted at something we wanted to do, Jack would go all the way." Ryan McMahon did the conform on Autodesk Flame. The sound mix was done at New York's Heard City. Safdie did a lot of sound design for the picture in Premiere: The music park sequence had no sound but featured 30 music tracks to create mood. Good Time was a hit at the Cannes Film Festival where it got a standing ovation. The Safdies have been compared to Martin Scorsese, so it's no accident that Scorsese will executive produce their next feature, Uncut Gems. Good Times opened in theaters domestically last month. TECHNICOLOR POSTWORKS HAS A GOOD TIME NEW YORK — The highly lauded crime drama Good Time, from directors Josh and Benny Safdie, was finished via a true digital intermedi- ate process at Technicolor PostWorks New York ( The movie was shot primarily on 2-perf 35mm film by cinema- tographer Sean Price Williams, and so, final post began the traditional way by scanning select negative. That was followed by two weeks of digital conforming and color grading by a crew that included colorist Jack Lewars and conform editors Ryan McMahon and Jeff Cornell. Set in a gritty section of Queens, Good Time tells the story of a bank robbery gone bad. The film bristles with tense action, much of it impro- vised by the actors and captured run-and-gun style by Williams, and the visuals are striking with strong colors and sharp compositions. "The saturation levels on this movie are extremely high…pushed to the max," says Lewars. "There's a scene following a bank robbery where a dye pack explodes and sprays the robbers with red ink. The ink is so red, it's toxic. It's incredible." Much of the film takes place at night with many scenes shot in low to very low light. Extracting the nuances, says Lewars, required dexterity and care. "It's very dark for most of the film," he observes. "We spent a lot of time in the initial grade finding the right saturation level for each scene. It's heavy contrast and rich blacks, a very crunchy movie. A lot of movies todays are very open and flat…they wanted the opposite of that." Lewars recalls a scene where the film's an- ti-hero Connie Nikas (Robert Pattinson) and members of this crew are stumbling through a pitch-black funhouse in a Long Island amuse- ment park. "It's hard to see what's going on, it's so dark," he notes. "At times, there'd be a flash of light and we'd boost the highlight a bit so that you could just make out peo- ple coming and going. It was great that the filmmakers were willing to take that risk. They let it go and allow the audience to become wrapped up in the experience." A small amount of b-roll footage was cap- tured digitally with an Arri Alexa. Cornell notes that they experimented with a variety of film grain emulations to make those scenes blend seamlessly with true film elements. "We mas- saged it into an area where it matched the film very closely and had the feel they were going for," Cornell says. "We got it to a point where it works really well." edit. Layers upon layers of story are revealed from 'What story is the color telling?' to 'Is the pacing true to the story I am telling?'" Going into the edit he realized that the final scene's "high-stakes pace" would be the crescen- do of Audible Static. In many ways, I reversed-en- gineered my vision for the edit all the way back to Parker's rehearsals. He had to master the tape recorders to make these cuts work. And he did. He spent three months learning the nuances of the recorders. His agility made the edit seamless." To evoke the look and feel of 1996, Selverajan and his team looked at high-school photos of the era. "Back then, there were no iPhones and Instagram filters. People were shooting film. So there was this moody and saturated aesthetic that we tried to capture," he says. "Once we locked picture, colorist Neil Anderson went back to the camera originals. Bongani and I gave Neil a look book of the feel we were going for, and Neil brought his own unique talent to the grading process." Anderson also confirmed the film delivering a 1920x1080 HD master. Audible Static was shown as part of the NBC Universal Short Film festival's semi-finalist screenings, earned the People's Choice Award at the James River Short Film Fest and a Gold Remi Award at the 50th Annual WorldFest- Houston. The film continues its festival rounds at the 36th Annual Breckenridge Film Festival this month. Selvarajan plans more festival screenings and hopes for distribution to other online plat- forms, broadcast and cable. Negatives were sent to LA's FotoKem for processing and digital dailies with a one-light color grade. Neil Anderson completed the color grade on Audible Static.

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