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September 2017

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DEPARTMENT www.postmagazine.com 19 POST SEPTEMBER 2017 Martin was also challenged by the film's scope. "There was a lot of story to tell. Finding the balance and deciding how much or how little was needed to tell the story was the bulk of the work," she says. "Many scenes that were written as independent, separate scenes were woven together into larger sequences, such as the training montage. The per- formances were so strong that we were able to strip back a lot of the dialogue as well." First assistant editor Staci Pontius regularly works with Martin. For Battle of the Sexes, she and VFX editor Derek Drouin joined Martin in cutting rooms set up by Hula Post. Sandgren shot the feature in LA on 35mm 3-perf using vintage lenses. The negative was processed by FotoKem; EFILM set the dailies color with Sandgren and cre- ated the Avid deliverables and PIX files that were uploaded to the directors. After editorial received the dailies, they prepped the Avid DNxHD 36 files for Martin to cut on an Avid Media Composer 7 with ISIS shared storage. Drouin created temp VFX shots throughout the film. "Pam likes to have as much temped as possi- ble," Pontius says. "Some actual cutaways from the original match were comped into TVs and control room screens during the match." The last dailies came in the day after production wrapped. When Martin finished the assembly, the directors were now free to join her to refine the final cut. Once the picture was locked, EFILM col- orist Mitch Paulson performed the final color grade on Autodesk Lustre with the participation of the directors and Sandgren. "The Avid dailies were 2K single flash scans so for the final color EFILM went back and scanned everything at 4K," says Pontius. EFILM DI editor Devon Miller conformed on Lustre. Loan Phan was the DI producer. "Everyone at EFILM was great to work with," says Pontius. "It's been a while since I worked on a project that was exclusively shot on film," she notes. "The way things are done now, the finishing process is very straightforward for us. As long as all of the metadata is correct, we don't end up doing things much differently than if it was shot digitally." THE EAGLE HUNTRESS The feature documentary, The Eagle Huntress, tells the story of 13 year-old Aisholpan, who trains to become the first female to hunt with an eagle in 12 generations of her nomadic Kazakh family in Mongolia. The stunningly beautiful film was direct- ed by Otto Bell, shot digitally by Simon Niblett and edited by Pierre Takal. One of the executive producers is documentary filmmaker Morgan Spurlock whose New York City-based company, Warrior Poets, handled all the post production (www.warrior-poets.com). Adam Sonnenfeld is the company's in-house post supervisor, overseeing all of Spurlock's features, new media and broadcast work. Warrior Poets boasts 14 edit suites and offers 24 Avid Media Composers, 10 with Symphony licenses and 80TB of Avid ISIS shared storage. Blackmagic Design DaVinci Resolve, running on Macs and Windows-based PCs, handles color grading and conform. Bell was introduced to Spurlock, his fellow execu- tive producer Jeremy Chilnick and producer Stacey Reiss part-way through production and eventually presented Warrior Poets with 13 hard drives of foot- age. "When Otto first came in with a brief pitch he had cut we thought, 'is this really what he's got in the can!?'" Sonnenfeld recalls. 'We knew the project was destined for great things. We were so proud to be a part of it." But Sonnenfeld knew that The Eagle Huntress came with challenges. It was shot almost entirely on location by Niblett and a cadre of internation- al shooters, who used an assortment of digital cameras. Niblett's primary camera was a Red Epic Dragon; the B camera was a Canon EOS C300. Additional cameras included GoPros, a Canon EOS 1D-X DSLR and a Blackmagic Design Pocket Cinema Camera; more cameras were mounted on drones. "The frame rates were all different: 23.98, 25, 29.97. We would have loved to put a spec sheet together early on to unify the production, but we weren't on the project when they began filming," Sonnenfeld notes. Fortunately, however, Warrior Poets is "good at frame rate conversions — it's what we do with the archival material we regularly work with on our films and TV series," he explains. Sonnenfeld directed those still shooting in the field to shoot 23.98 for consistency in the remain- ing footage. The two main goals once the dailies drives were in-house was to get everything into Avid and build the Avid project, no small feat given that material was "in different flavors of RAW and proprietary camera codecs," he notes. A fair amount of sound was recorded separately as well. Assistants spent several months synching what could be synched, grouping what could be grouped, organizing and transcoding so Takal could begin cutting DNxHD 36 files. A particular challenge for this film was deal- ing with the Kazakh dialogue: The editorial team needed to know what Aisholpan and her family were saying. "We had to come up with a workflow to translate everything and get it into Avid so Pierre could edit it," explains Sonnenfeld. "This was the first time we had to translate an entire film's worth of dailies. I sent our translators in Kazakhstan a sample Avid text file and told them to type their translations in a matching layout so we could import them into Avid's SubCap tool. We used SubCap to caption all the dailies and cut with those cap- tions. Later, we sent them back out to the transla- tors to check our work." Despite having more than 70 hours of dai- lies, Bell actually came down on "the lean side" of total amount of footage captured, notes Sonnenfeld. "Otto is from advertising and has an amazing eye for shots and emotive moments. He shot the vision he had." The story follows Aisholpan as she catches her eagle, trains it and ultimately wins the hunting competition — a rare achievement for a female. The linear structure of the tale works especially well for younger viewers who don't need to read the sub- titles — an audience Warrior Poets is trying to get interested in documentaries. Editor Takal "pushed the sound editing abilities Warrior Poets handled all post for The Eagle Huntress. Footage was shot on all different cameras and frame rates.

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