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The editors of Ad Astra: John Axelrad and Lee Haugen


by Amy Leland

The new Brad Pitt film Ad Astra follows astronaut Roy McBride (Pitt) as he journeys deep into space in search of his father, astronaut Clifford McBride (Tommy Lee Jones). The elder McBride disappeared years before, and his experiments in space might be endangering life on Earth. Pitt’s character is alone in space for much of the film, creating a happy challenge for the editing team, which has a long history of collaborating with each other and the film’s director James Gray. Ad Astra co-editors John Axelrad, ACE, and Lee Haugen share credits on three previous films — Haugen served as Axelrad’s apprentice editor on Two Lovers, and the two co-edited The Lost City of Z and PapillonAd Astra’s director, James Gray, was also at the helm of Two Lovers and The Lost City of Z. A lot can be said for long-time collaborations.

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NBCUni 7.26

Sponsored: Q&A – Boris FX Talks Growth and the Road Ahead


 

Back in the early days of nonlinear editing, Boris Yamnitsky worked as an engineer at Media 100, which was paving the path that leads to today, along with companies like Avid Technology. At the time, these new tools took editing out of the corporate broadcast environment and large post facilities and empowered individual users to edit and finish video projects in their homes and small offices. But something was missing… According to Yamnitsky, “There wasn’t any software alternative to the hardware switchers and DVE boxes used in conventional tape-based post and broadcast.” Enter Boris FX.

How did you go about solving that problem?
In the summer of 1995, after toiling for about six months in my parents’ basement, I came up with a VFX plugin software for Media 100 and Adobe Premiere…

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Color grading IT Chapter Two’s terrifying return


 

In IT Chapter Two, the kids of the Losers’ Club are all grown up and find themselves lured back to their hometown of Derry. Still haunted both by the trauma that monstrous clown Pennywise let loose on the community and by each one’s own unique insecurities, the group finds itself up against even more terrifying forces than they faced in the first film, IT. Chapter Two director Andy Muschietti called on DP Checco Varese and colorist Stephen Nakamura of Company 3. Nakamura returned to the franchise, performing the final color grade at Efilm in Hollywood.

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Sponsored: MSI Q&A – Expanding Gaming Expertise to High-End Content Creation


 

Back in 1986, MSI’s founders — Joseph Hsu, Henry Lu, Jeans Huang, Frank Lin and Kenny Yu — shared a vision of bringing high-performance hardware to users. They targeted the gaming and esports industry before moving into the gaming laptop market and, most recently, media and entertainment. Early on, the founders realized that in order to provide the right tools, they needed to talk to users to make sure their solutions met industry needs. That is also how they have been targeting the M&E market. MSI offers three series of products — the Creator Series, the Prestige Series and the Modern Series — to serve the gamut of users, from high-end video creators to vloggers. We reached out to MSI’s NB Marketing Director Derek Chen to find out more …

Why did MSI feel it had the right tools for the M&E market?
With the recent surge in popularity of YouTubers, streamers and other content creators, and we saw the potential for these types of users.

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Michael Engler on directing Downton Abbey movie


by Iain Blair

If, like millions of other fans around the world, you still miss watching the PBS TV series Downton Abbey, don’t despair. The acclaimed show is back as a new feature film, still showcasing plenty of drama, nostalgia, glamour and good British values with every frame. The film reunites the series’ cast (Hugh Bonneville, Jim Carter, Michelle Dockery, Elizabeth McGovern, Maggie Smith) and also adds some new members. The film starts with a simple but effective plot device, a visit to the Great House from the most illustrious guests the Crawley family could ever hope to entertain — their Majesties King George V and Queen Mary. At the film’s helm was TV and theater director Michael Engler, whose diverse credits include 30 Rock, Empire, Deadwood, Nashville, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and several episodes of the series Downton Abbey.

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IBC Update: 2019 Video Coverage – Edition 2


 

At IBC 2019, postPerspective TV shot interviews around the show floor in an effort to deliver IBC to those who couldn’t make the trip to Amsterdam and to those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all.

We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent.

This is the second of two video newsletters you will receive from us. If you’d like to see more videos, please click here to see our full archive!

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IBC Update: 2019 Video Coverage – Edition 1


 

At IBC 2019, postPerspective TV shot interviews around the show floor in an effort to deliver IBC to those who couldn’t make the trip to Amsterdam and to those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all.

We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent.

This is the first of two video newsletters you will receive from us. If you’d like to see more videos, please click here to see our full archive!

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IBC 2019 in Amsterdam: Big heads in the cloud


by David Cox

IBC 2019 kicked off with an announcement from Avid — they were entering into a strategic alliance with Microsoft and Walt Disney Studios’ Studio Lab to enable remote editorial workflows in the cloud. The interesting part for me is how this affects the perception of post producing in the cloud, rather than the actual technology of it. It has been technically possible to edit remotely in the cloud for some time, either by navigating the Wild West interfaces of the principal cloud providers and “spinning up” a remote computer, connecting some storage and content, and then running an edit app. Or, alternatively, by using a product that takes care of all that such as Blackbird. No doubt, the collaboration with Disney will produce products and services within an ecosystem that makes the technical use of the cloud invisible.

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True Detective’s quiet, tense Emmy-nominated sound


by Jennifer Walden

When there’s nothing around, there’s no place to hide. That’s why quiet soundtracks can be the most challenging to create. Every flaw in the dialogue — every hiss, every off-mic head turn, every cloth rustle against the body mic — stands out. Every incidental ambient sound — bugs, birds, cars, airplanes — stands out. Even the noise-reduction processing to remove those flaws can stand out, particularly when there’s a minimalist approach to sound effects and score. That is the reason why the sound editing and mixing on Season 3 of HBO’s True Detective has been recognized with Emmy nominations. The sound team put together a quiet, tense soundtrack that perfectly matched the tone of the show.

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Official Secrets director Gavin Hood talks workflow on this real-life thriller


by Iain Blair

South African writer/director Gavin Hood burst onto the international scene when he wrote and directed 2005’s Oscar-winning Tsotsi. The film, which was nominated for a Golden Globe and a BAFTA, won the People’s Choice Award at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). Hood followed that success with the harrowing political drama RenditionX-Men Origins: Wolverine, the sci-fi offering Ender’s Game and the thriller Eye in the Sky. For his new film, Official Secrets, Hood returns to the murky world of government secrets and political double-dealing with a true but largely forgotten story that could have prevented the invasion of Iraq and the subsequent war.

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Fred Raskin talks editing and Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood


by Amy Leland

Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood is marketed in a style similar to its predecessors — “the ninth film from Quentin Tarantino.” It is also the third film with Fred Raskin, ACE, as Tarantino’s editor. Having previously edited Django Unchained and The Hateful Eight, as well as having worked as assistant editor on the Kill Bill films, Raskin has had the opportunity to work with with a filmmaker who has always made it clear how much he values collaboration. On top of this remarkable director/editor relationship, Raskin has also lent his editing hand to a slew of other incredibly popular films, including three entries in the Fast & Furious saga and both Guardians of the Galaxy films. I had the chance to talk with him about his start, his transition to editor and his work on Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood.

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Destruction & dragons: Game of Thrones’ Emmy-nominated visual effects


by Iain Blair

Once upon a time, only big-budget movies could afford the time and money it took to create truly spectacular visual effects. Meanwhile, TV shows either tried to avoid them altogether or had to rely on generic hand-me-downs. But the digital revolution changed all that, with new tools quickly leveling the playing field. Today, television is giving the movies a run for their money when it comes to sophisticated visual effects, as evidenced by HBO’s blockbuster series, Game of Thrones. This fantasy series was recently Emmy-nominated for its visually ambitious VFX in the penultimate episode, “The Bells.” All the epic mass destruction presented Scanline’s VFX supervisor, Mohsen Mousavi, and his team many challenges.

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GLOW’s DP and colorist adapt look of new season for Vegas setting


by Adrian Pennington

Netflix’s Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling (GLOW) are back in the ring for a third round of the dramatic comedy, but this time they’re in Las Vegas. The glitz and glamour of Sin City seem tailor-made for the 1980s-set GLOW and provided the main creative challenge for Season 3 cinematographer Chris Teague (Russian Doll, Broad City). “Early on, I met with Christian Sprenger, who shot the first season and designed the initial look,” says Teague, who was recently nominated for an Emmy for his work on Russian Doll. “We still want GLOW to feel like GLOW, but the story and character arc of Season 3, as well as the new setting, led us to build on the look and evolve elements like lighting and dynamic range.”

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SIGGRAPH Update: 2019 Video Coverage – Edition Two


 

At SIGGRAPH 2019, postPerspective TV shot interviews at our booth and around the show floor, all in an effort to deliver SIGGRAPH to those who couldn’t make the trip to Los Angeles and to those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all. We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent.

This is the second of our two SIGGRAPH 2019 video newsletters. If you’d like to see all of our SIGGRAPH videos now, please click here to see our full archive!

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Dick Wolf’s television empire: his production and post brain trust


by Iain Blair

The TV landscape is full of scripted police procedurals and true crime dramas these days, but the legendary king of that crowded landscape is Emmy-winning creator/producer Dick Wolf, whose name has become synonymous with high-quality episodic drama. Since it burst onto the scene back in 1990, his Law & Order show has spawned six dramas and four international spinoffs, while his “Chicago” franchise gave birth to another four series —  Chicago MedChicago Fire and Chicago P.D. His Chicago Justice was cancelled after one season. Then there’s his “FBI” shows, as well as the more documentary-style Cold Justice. I spoke with Emmy-winning Arthur Forney, executive producer of all Wolf Entertainment’s scripted series (he’s also directed many episodes), about posting those shows. 

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SIGGRAPH 2019 Video Update: Edition One


 

At SIGGRAPH 2019, postPerspective TV shot interviews at our booth and around the show floor, all in an effort to deliver SIGGRAPH to those who couldn’t make the trip to Los Angeles and to those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all. We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent. This is the first of our two SIGGRAPH 2019 video newsletters. If you’d like to see all of our SIGGRAPH videos now, click here to see our full archive!

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Skywalker Sound’s audio post mix for Toy Story 4


by Jennifer Walden

Pixar’s first feature-length film, 1995’s Toy Story, was a game-changer for animated movies. There was no going back after that film blasted onto screens and into the hearts of millions. Fast-forward 24 years to the franchise’s fourth installment — Toy Story 4 — and it’s plain to see that Pixar’s approach to animated fare hasn’t changed.Visually, Toy Story 4 brings so much to the screen, with its near-photorealistic imagery, interesting camera angles and variations in depth of field. “It’s a cartoon, but not really. It’s a film,” says Skywalker Sound’s Oscar-winning re-recording mixer Michael Semanick, who handled the effects/music alongside re-recording mixer Nathan Nance on dialogue/Foley. Here, Semanick and Nance talk about their approach to mixing Toy Story 4 and how they used reverb and Foley to bring the characters to life and the Dolby Atmos surround field to make the animated world feel immersive. They also talk about mixing… Continue Reading

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The Umbrella Academy: Emmy- nominated VFX supe Everett Burrell


by Iain Blair

If all ambitious TV shows with a ton of visual effects aspire to be cinematic, then Netflix’s The Umbrella Academy has to be the gold standard. The acclaimed sci-fi, superhero, adventure mash-up was just Emmy-nominated for its season-ending episode “The White Violin,” which showcased a full range of spectacular VFX. This included everything from the fully-CG Dr. Pogo to blowing up the moon and a mansion to the characters’ varied superpowers. This is partly thanks to Netflix’s 4K pipeline. The story starts when 43 infants are born to unconnected women who showed no signs of pregnancy the day before. Seven are adopted by a billionaire, who creates The Umbrella Academy and prepares his “children” to save the world. In their teenage years, the family fractured and the team disbanded. Now, six of the surviving members reunite upon the news of their dad’s death to solve a mystery surrounding their father’s passing. But the estranged family … Continue Reading

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Creating and mixing authentic sounds for HBO’s Deadwood movie


by Jennifer Walden

HBO’s award-winning series Deadwood might have aired its final episode 13 years ago, but it’s recently found new life as a movie. Set in 1889 — a decade after the series finale — Deadwood: The Movie picks up the threads of many of the main characters’ stories and weaves them together as the town of Deadwood celebrates the statehood of South Dakota. The film, which aired on HBO and is available on Amazon, picked up three 2019 Emmy nominations in the categories of sound editing, sound mixing and best television movie. . The film’s cast is populated by returning members, as is much of the crew. On the sound side, there is freelance production sound mixer Geoffrey Patterson; 424 Post’s sound designer, Benjamin Cook; NBCUniversal StudioPost’s re-recording mixer, William Freesh; and Mind Meld Arts’ music editor, Micha Liberman.

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Rocketman audio: Mixing sounds of fantasy and reality


by Jennifer Walden

Rocketman is a musical fantasy about the early years of Elton John. The story is told through flashbacks, giving director Dexter Fletcher the freedom to bend reality. He could blend memories and music to tell an emotional truth as opposed to delivering hard facts. The story begins with Elton John (Taron Egerton) attending a group therapy session with other recovering addicts. Even as he’s sharing details of his life, he’s stretching the truth. “His recollection of the past is not reliable. He often fantasizes. He’ll say a truth that isn’t really the case, because when you flash back to his memory, it is not what he’s saying,” says BAFTA-winning re-recording mixer Mike Prestwood Smith, who handled the film’s dialogue and music. “So we’re constantly crossing the line of fantasy, even in the reality sections.”

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Perpetual Grace’s DPs and colorist weigh in on show’s gritty look


  https://www.postperspective.com/ppnews-190703.html

You don’t have to get very far into watching the Epix series Perpetual Grace to realize just how ominous this show feels. It begins with the opening shots, and by the time you’ve spent a few minutes with the dark, mysterious characters who populate this world — and gathered hints of the many schemes within schemes that perpetuate the story — the show’s tone is clear. With its black-and-white flashbacks and the occasional, gritty flash-forwards, Perpetual Grace gets pretty dark, and the action goes in directions you won’t see coming. The series comes from the minds of executive producer Steve Conrad, who also served in that role on Amazon’s quirky drama Patriot, and Bruce Terris, who was both a writer and a first AD on that show. These showrunners developed the look with other Patriot veterans: cinematographers James Whitaker and Nicole Hirsch Whitaker, who incorporated colorist Sean Coleman’s input before commencing principal photography… Continue Reading

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Yesterday director Danny Boyle


by Iain Blair

Yesterday, everyone knew The Beatles. Today, only a struggling singer-songwriter from a tiny English town remembers their songs. That’s the brilliant-yet-simple setup for Yesterday, the new rock ’n’ roll comedy from Academy Award-winning director Danny Boyle and Oscar-nominated screenwriter Richard Curtis. Jack Malik (Himesh Patel) is the struggling musician whose dreams of fame are rapidly fading, despite the fierce devotion and support of his childhood best friend/ manager, Ellie (Lily James). But after a freak bus accident during a mysterious global blackout, Jack wakes up to discover that he is the only one that remembers The Beatles and their music. Because of this, his career gets supercharged when he ditches his own mediocre songs and instead starts performing hit after hit by the Fab Four — as if he’d written them.

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Amazon’s Sneaky Pete: DP Arthur Albert on the look of Season 3


by Karen Moltenbrey

Crime always seems to find Pete Murphy — or should we say Marius Josipovic (Giovanni Ribisi). Marius is a con man who assumed his cellmate’s identity when he was paroled from prison. His plan was twofold: first, pretend to be the still-incarcerated Pete, from whom the family has been estranged for the past 20 years, and hide out on their farm in Connecticut. Second, con the family out of money so he can pay back a brutal mobster (Bryan Cranston, who also produces). Marius’s plan, however, is flawed. Ultimately, Marius starts to really care for the family, while also discovering that his cover is not that safe. Similar to how Marius’ plans on Sneaky Pete have changed, so has the show’s production on the current and final Season 3, which is streaming on Amazon now.

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Rocketman director Dexter Fletcher on Elton John musical


by Iain Blair

The past year has been huge for British director Dexter Fletcher. He was instrumental in getting Bohemian Rhapsodyover the finish line when he was brought in to direct the latter part of the production after Bryan Singer was fired. The result? A $903 million global smash that Hollywood never saw coming. Now he’s back with Rocketman, another film about another legendary performer and musician, Elton John. The Freddie Mercury film was more of a conventional biopic that opted for a PG-13 rating and an approach that sidestepped a lot of the darker elements of the singer’s life. By comparison, Rocketman fully embraces its R-rating and dives headfirst into the sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll circus that was Elton’s life at the time.

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Sponsored: creative.space Q&A – Growing an On-Premises Managed Storage Solution


 

creative.space is on-premise, managed storage designed to provide creatives the performance they need without the technical burden of maintaining large lT systems. It was created by post pros for post pros, so it recognizes that M&E companies have unique needs.

To find out more, we reached out to Tim Anderson, CEO and CTO of creative.space and parent company DigitalGlue, with some questions about the company’s offerings, as well storage trends for the Media and Entertainment industry.

How has storage for M&E changed in the last few years? What do you think is behind that change?
The biggest change is that storage is getting cheaper. A chief reason for that is that the big three (Google, Facebook, Amazon) have invested a lot of R&D money into building cost-effective storage to meet the projected increase in online video content, which projections are saying will account for 79% of global internet traffic by 2020.

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Apple intros long-awaited new Mac Pro and Pro Display XDR


by Barry Goch

The Apple Worldwide Developers Conference kicked off on Monday with a keynote from Apple CEO Tim Cook, where he announced the eagerly awaited new Mac Pro and Pro Display XDR. In recent years, many working in M&E felt as if Apple had moved away from supporting creative pros working in this industry. There was the fumbled rollout of FCPX and then the “trash can” MacPro with its limited upgrade path. Well, our patience has finally paid off and our faith in Apple restored. This week Apple delivered products beyond expectation. This post pro, for one, is very happy that Apple is back making serious hardware for creative professionals. The tight integration of hardware and software, along with Apple’s build quality, makes its products unique in the market. There is confidence and freedom using Macs that creatives love, and the tower footprint is back!

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Showrunner and EP Peter Gould on AMC’s Better Call Saul


by Iain Blair

Having a legal issue? Thinking of calling someone who has a questionable relationship with the rule of law? How about Jimmy McGill, Saul Goodman or maybe Gene, the lonely Cinnabon store manager? The slippery, shady, shape-shifting character — played beautifully by multiple Emmy-nominee Bob Odenkirk — is at the heart of Better Call Saul, the spin-off prequel to AMC’s Breaking Bad. But if you want to know what’s going on under the hood of the show, you better call writer/director/showrunner Peter Gould. A Sony Pictures Television and AMC Studios co-production, Better Call Saul is executive produced by co-creators Gould and Vince Gilligan, as well as Mark Johnson (Breaking Bad, Diner, Rain Man), Melissa Bernstein (Breaking Bad, Rectify, Halt and Catch Fire) and Breaking Bad alums Thomas Schnauz and Gennifer Hutchison. The show recently won a Peabody Award in the Entertainment category and has racked up wins and nominations from the Primetime… Continue Reading

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The editing and technology behind Netflix’s Black Mirror: Bandersnatch


by Karen Moltenbrey

In any film, or web/television series for that matter, the final presentation is the culmination of many choices — the director’s, the scriptwriter’s, the editor’s… just about everyone’s but the viewers. However, Netflix changed that with Black Mirror: Bandersnatch, a special interactive TV movie during which viewers are prompted to make selections that affect the decision-making and, ultimately, determine the fate of the main character, a young video game programmer. Alas, while the viewer is tasked with making certain decisions at various intervals in the movie, that certainly did not mean the workload was any less for those on the

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All Is True director Kenneth Branagh


by Iain Blair

Five-time Oscar-nominee Ken Branagh might be the biggest fan of Shakespeare in the business. In fact, it’s fair to say that the actor/director/producer/ screenwriter largely owes his fame and fortune to the Bard. So it was probably only a matter of time before the Irish star jumped at the chance to play Shakespeare himself in the new film All Is True, a fictionalized look at the final years of the playwright. I sat down with Branagh to talk about making the film and his workflow.

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Sponsored: Urban Sled’s evolving collaborative workflow


 

Anyone working in the ’80s and ’90s in post and broadcast remembers the Sneakernet — running tapes around a newsroom or post house and hoping the elevator wait is not too long because running up 10 flights of stairs won’t work with a looming deadline. With digital workflows, a new type of sneaker net formed that replaced physical tapes with portable RAIDs and isolated workstations working on different parts of a project. Digital workflows were supposed to bring everyone together, not waste time with panicked, last-minute conforms trying to get an edit from a workstation using one type of software to one down the hall using a different VFX program. Finally, New York City’s Urban Sled had enough. They turned to Blackmagic’s Resolve Studio for collaborative editing, color grading and visual effects without the need to conform.

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Showrunner: Checking in with Eric Newman of Netflix’s Narcos: Mexico


by Iain Blair

Like the drugs that form the dark heart of Narcos: Mexico, the Netflix crime drama is full of danger, chills and thrills — and is highly addictive. It explores the origins of the modern, ultra-violent drug war by going back to its roots, beginning at a time when the Mexican trafficking world was a disorganized and loose confederation of independent growers and dealers. But that all changed with the rise of the Guadalajara Cartel in the 1980s, as Félix Gallardo — the real-life former Sinaloan police-officer-turned-drug lord — takes the helm, unifying traffickers and building an empire. The Narcos showrunner is  writer and executive producer Eric Newman. We recently spoke with Newman about making the show, his involvement in post, and another war that’s grabbed a lot of headlines — the one between streaming platforms and traditional cinema.

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Idris Elba and Gary Reich talk about creating Netflix’s Turn Up Charlie


by Iain Blair

dris Elba has always excelled at playing uber-cool, uber-controlled characters — often villains and troubled souls, such as drug lord Stringer Bell on HBO’s The Wire, detective John Luther on the BBC’s Luther, and the warlord in the harrowing feature film Beasts of No Nation. The star also moonlights as a DJ, which is the inspiration for his new Netflix show Turn Up Charlie. Elba stars as the titular Charlie, a decidedly uncool, struggling DJ and eternal bachelor, who finally gets a shot at success when he reluctantly becomes a “manny” to his famous best friend’s problem-child daughter. The show also serves as a showcase for Elba’s self-described “nerdy” side behind the camera, his love of producing and his hands-on involvement in every aspect of post. The eight-part series is co-produced by Elba’s Green Door Pictures and Gary Reich’s Brown Eyed Boy Productions, with Elba and Reich serving as executive producers alongside Tristram Shapeero,… Continue Reading

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Creating audio for the cinematic VR series Delusion: Lies Within


by Jennifer Walden

Delusion: Lies Within is a cinematic VR series from writer/director Jon Braver. It is available on the Samsung Gear VR and Oculus Go and Rift platforms. The story follows a reclusive writer named Elena Fitzgerald, who penned a series of popular fantasy novels, but before the final book in the series was released, the author disappeared. Rumors circulated about the author’s sanity and supposed murder, so two fans decide to break into her mansion to search for answers. What they find are Elena’s nightmares come to life. According to supervising sound editor Thomas Ouziel at Hollywood’s MelodyGun Group, “Unlike many VR experiences where you’re kind of on rails in the midst of the action, this was much more cinematic and nuanced. You’re just sitting in the space with the characters, so it was crucial to bring them to life and to design full sonic spaces that felt alive.”

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NAB Update: 2019 Video Coverage – Edition Three


 

At NAB 2019, postPerspective TV shot interviews at our booth and around the show floor, all in an effort to deliver NAB to those who couldn’t make the trip to Vegas and to those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all.

We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent.

This is the last of our three NAB 2019 video newsletters. If you’d like to see all of our NAB videos now, please click here to see our full archive!

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NAB Update: 2019 Video Coverage – Edition Two


 

At NAB 2019, postPerspective TV shot interviews at our booth and around the show floor, all in an effort to deliver NAB to those who couldn’t make the trip to Vegas and to those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all. We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent. This is the second of three video newsletters you will receive from us. If you’d like to see more videos now, please click here to see our full archive!

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The Kominsky Method’s post brain trust: Ross Cavanaugh and Ethan Henderson


by Iain Blair

As Bette Davis famously said, “Old age ain’t no place for sissies!” But Netflix’s The Kominsky Method proves that in the hands of veteran sitcom creator Chuck Lorre — The Big Bang Theory, Two and a Half Men and many others — there’s plenty of laughs to be mined from old age… and disease, loneliness and incontinence. The show stars Michael Douglas as divorced, has-been actor and respected acting coach Sandy Kominsky and Alan Arkin as his longtime agent Norman Newlander. The single-camera show is written by Al Higgins, David Javerbaum and Lorre, who also directed the first episode. Lorre, Higgins and Douglas executive produce the series.

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NAB Update: 2019 Video Coverage – Edition One


 

At NAB 2019, postPerspective TV shot interviews at our booth and around the show floor, all in an effort to deliver NAB to those who couldn’t make the trip to Vegas and to those who were at the show but couldn’t see it alWe hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent. This is the first of three video newsletters you will receive from us.

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NAB 2019: First impressions


by Mike McCarthy

There are always a slew of new product announcements during the week of NAB, and this year was no different. As a Premiere editor, the developments from Adobe are usually the ones most relevant to my work and life. Similar to last year, Adobe was able to get their software updates released a week before NAB, instead of for eventual release months later. The biggest new feature in the Adobe Creative Cloud apps is After Effects’ new “Content Aware Fill” for video. This will use AI to generate image data to automatically replace a masked area of video, based on surrounding pixels and surrounding frames.

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Wonder Park’s whimsical sound


by Jennifer Walden

The imagination of a young girl comes to life in the animated feature Wonder Park. The story follows June and her mother as they build a pretend amusement park in June’s bedroom. There are rides that defy the laws of physics. But when her mom gets sick, June’s creative spark fizzles out. She packs the park away. Then one day June stumbles onto a real-life Wonderland in the woods that mirrors her make-believe one. Wonder Park is meant to be sweet and fun, and supervising sound editor John Marquis captures that masterfully. Marquis and his core team — sound effects editor Diego Perez, sound assistant Emma Present, dialogue/ADR editor Michele Perrone and Foley supervisor Jonathan Klein — handled sound design, sound editorial and pre-mixing at E² Sound.

 

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DP Tom Curran on Netflix’s Tidying Up With Marie Kondo


by Iain Blair

Forget all the trendy shows about updating your home décor or renovating your house. What you really need to do is declutter. And the guru of decluttering is Marie Kondo, the Japanese star of Netflix’s Tidying Up With Marie Kondo. The organizational expert became a global star when her first book, 2014’s “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing,” was translated into English, becoming a New York Times bestseller. Her follow-up was 2016’s “Spark Joy: An Illustrated Master Class on the Art of Organizing and Tidying Up.” I recently spoke with Tom Curran, the cinematographer of the Kondo show. His extensive credits include Ugly Delicious for Netflix, Fish My City for National Geographic and 9 Months for Facebook, which is hosted by Courteney Cox. Curran has an Emmy on his mantle for ABC Sports’ Iditarod Sled Dog Race.

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Hulu’s PEN15 and the funny sounds of middle school


by Jennifer Walden

Being 13 years old once was hard enough, but the creators of the Hulu series PEN15 have relived that uncomfortable age — braces and all — a second time for the sake of comedy. Maya Erskine and Anna Konkle might be in their 30s, but they convincingly play two 13-year-old BFFs journeying through the perils of 7th grade. Erskine, Konkle and co-showrunner Sam Zvibleman hilariously capture all of that cringe-worthy coming-of-age content in their writing on PEN15. At Monkeyland Audio in Glendale, California, supervising sound editor/re-recording mixer James Parnell and his team worked hard to capture that almost indescribable nostalgic essence that the showrunners were seeking. Monkeyland was responsible for all post sound editorial, including Foley, ADR, final 5.1 surround mixing and stereo fold-downs for each episode. Let’s find out more from Parnell.

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Disney Channel’s Fast Layne director Hasraf ‘HaZ’ Dulull


by Randi Altman

London-based Hasraf “HaZ” Dulull is a man with a rich industry background. He started out in this business as a visual effects artist (The Dark Knight, Hellboy 2) and VFX supervisor (America: The Story of the US), and has expanded his resume in recent years to include producer, screenwriter and director of his own feature films. Even more recently, he added television series director to that long list, thanks to his work on Disney Channel’s action-comedy miniseries Fast Layne, where he directed Episodes 1, 2, 7 and 8. He is currently developing a slate of feature and TV projects, with his next film being a sci-fi/horror called Lunar, which is scheduled to start shooting later in the year.

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Spider-Man Into the Spider-Verse: sound editors talk ‘magical realism’


by Randi Altman

Sony Pictures’ Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse isn’t your ordinary Spider-Man movie, from its story to its look to its sound. The filmmakers took a familiar story and turned it on its head a bit, letting audiences know that Spider-Man isn’t just one guy wearing that mask… or even a guy, or even from this dimension. The film focuses on Miles Morales, a teenager from Brooklyn, struggling with all things teenager while also dealing with the added stress of being Spider-Man. Audio played a huge role in this story, and we recently reached out to Sony supervising sound editors Geoff Rubay and Curt Schulkey to dig in a bit deeper. The duo recently won an MPSE Award for Outstanding Achievement in Sound Editing — Feature Animation… industry peers recognizing the work that went into creating the sound for this stylized world.

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DP Petr Hlinomaz talks about the look of Marvel’s The Punisher


by Karen Moltenbrey

For antiheroes like Frank Castle, the lead in the Netflix series Marvel’s The Punisher, morality comes in many shades of gray. A vigilante hell-bent on revenge, the Marine veteran used whatever means possible — kidnapping, murder, extortion — to exact revenge on those responsible for the deaths of his family.The Punisher is dark and intense, as is the show itself. The overall aesthetic is dim and gritty to match the action, yet rich and beautiful at the same time. This is the world initially envisioned by Marvel and then brought to life on screen late in Season 1 by DP Petr Hlinomaz under the direction of showrunner Steve Lightfoot.

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Sponsored: Enabling Streamlined Workflows with Imagine Products


 

If you have worked in this business for any amount of time, you are likely familiar with Imagine Products, which has been creating software to help streamline workflows for almost 30 years. Their offerings include the heavily used offloading tool ShotPut Pro, in addition to PreRoll Post, myLTO and PrimeTranscoder.

To stay successful in this business for as long as Imagine Products has, you have to listen to users and study the industry. We recently reached out to Imagine Product’s Michelle Maddox to find out more about the company, its products and new offerings designed to make the user experience more streamlined.

Can you talk about the beginnings of ShotPut Pro?
It was originally three separate offload apps designed to work with Sony, Red and Panasonic, but when ARRI came calling, we developed ShotPut Pro.

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Free Solo: The filmmakers behind the Oscar-nominated documentary


by By Iain Blair

Do you suffer from vertigo? Are you deathly afraid of heights? Does the thought of hanging by your fingertips over the void make you feel like throwing up? Then the new, nail-biting climbing film Free Solo, which has been Oscar-nominated for Best Documentary feature, might not be for you. But if you enjoy an edge-of-your-seat thriller that allows you — thanks to truly awesome cinematography — to virtually “free solo” (climb a rock face without any safety gear), then you should rush to see this inspiring portrait of an athlete who challenges both his body and his beliefs on a quest to triumph over the impossible.

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Cold War’s Oscar-nominated director Pawel Pawlikowski


by Iain Blair

awel Pawlikowski is a BAFTA-winning writer and director whose Polish drama Ida won the 2015 Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. Pawlikowski, who left Poland at age 14 and currently resides in the UK, is Oscar nominated again — as Best Director for his latest film Cold War. Also nominated for Best Foreign Language Film, this black and white offering earned cinematographer Lukasz Zal an Oscar nomination, as well as an ASC Award win. Cold War traces the passionate love story between Wiktor and Zula, a couple who meet in the ruins of post-war Poland.

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Mortal Engines: Weta Digital creates hell on wheels


by Karen Moltenbrey

Over the years, Weta Digital has made a name for itself creating vast imaginative worlds for highly acclaimed feature film franchises such as The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. However, for the recently released Mortal Engines, not only did the studio have to construct wide swaths of land the size of countries, but the crew also had to build supercities that move at head-spinning speed. Mortal Engines takes place centuries after a cataclysmic event known as the Sixty Minute War destroys civilization as we know it, leaving behind few resources. Eventually, survivors learn to adapt, and a deadly, mobile society emerges whereby gigantic moving cities roam the earth, preying on smaller towns they hunt down across a landscape called the Great Hunting Ground.

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Beautiful Boy director Felix Van Groeningen


by Iain Blair

Felix Van Groeningen, director of Amazon’s Beautiful Boy, may not be a household name in America, but among cineastes this Belgian is already well respected. His last film, Belgica, premiered at Sundance in 2016, where he won the Directing Award (Dramatic World Cinema). His The Broken Circle Breakdown earned a 2014 Oscar nomination for Best Foreign Language Film and a César for Best Foreign Film. For his first English language film, Van Groeningen jumped right into the deep end when he took on Beautiful Boy, a harrowing family drama about drug addiction. Based on two memoirs — one from journalist David Sheff (Steve Carell) and one from his son, Nic (Timothée Chalamet) — it unsparingly chronicles the repeated relapses and the harsh reality that addiction is a disease that does not discriminate and can hit any family at any time.

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BlacKkKlansman director Spike Lee


by Iain Blair

The last time we spoke to filmmaker Spike Lee, he had just finished Chi-Raq, a rap reworking of Aristophanes’ “Lysistrata,” which was set against a backdrop of Chicago gang violence. Since then, he’s directed various TV series, docs and video projects. And now his latest film, BlacKkKlansman, has been nominated for a host of Oscars, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Film Editing, Best Original Score and Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Adam Driver). Set in the early 1970s, the unlikely-but-true story details the exploits of Ron Stallworth (John David Washington), the first African-American detective to serve in the Colorado Springs Police Department.

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Sponsored: creative.space drives Local Hero Post


 

Storage is the heartbeat of any facility that relies on quick access to its content for a wide range of projects. There’s nothing more important than having shared storage that just works. So when Steve Bannerman, CEO of Local Hero — which offers end-to-end post and visual effects services for feature films and high-end TV series — decided he’d had enough of the facility’s budget-busting, under-serviced storage system, his search led him in an unexpected direction.

Local Hero is the trusted, full-service boutique post house for numerous high-profile clients, such as HBO, Netflix, Lionsgate and Apple. Their credits include the recent movie Home Again, starring Reese Witherspoon, and HBO series Big Little Lies, featuring Witherspoon and Nicole Kidman, and Amy Adams starrer Sharp Objects.

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Patrick J. Don Vito on editing Green Book


by Randi Altman

Based on a true story, Green Book tells the tale of an African-American piano virtuoso and his white driver. The duo must navigate the Deep South in 1962 for a concert tour during a time when most places to eat and sleep were segregated. This unlikely pairing of the well-educated and sophisticated Dr. Don Shirley (Mahershala Ali) and the blue-collar Tony Lip (Viggo Mortensen) ends up teaching both men a lesson in understanding and acceptance, and turns into a life-long friendship. The film was nominated for five Golden Globe Awards and won three: Best Screenplay, Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy and Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture. The work of the film’s editor, Patrick J. Don Vito, has also been noticed, receiving an ACE Eddie nomination in the Best Edited Feature Film (Comedy) category.

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Color grading The Favourite


 

Yorgos Lanthimos’ historical comedy, The Favourite, has become an awards show darling. In addition to winning 10 British Independent Film Awards, it also dominated the BAFTA with 12 nods, including Best Film, Best Director, Best and Best Cinematography. Final picture post on the black comedy was completed by Goldcrest Post in London using DaVinci Resolve Studio. The Century Fox film’s DI was overseen by Jonathan Collard, with senior colorist Rob Pizzey providing the grade. He was assisted by Maria Chamberlain, while Russell White completed the online edit.

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Catching up with Aquaman director James Wan


by Iain Blair

Director James Wan has become one of the biggest names in Hollywood thanks to his $1.5 billion-grossing Furious 7, as well as the Saw, Conjuringand Insidious films — three of the most successful horror franchises of the last decade. vNow the Malaysian-born, Australian-raised Wan, who also writes and produces, has taken on the challenge of bringing Aquaman and Atlantis to life. The origin story of half-human, half-Atlantean Arthur Curry stars Jason Momoa in the title role. Wan’s team behind the scenes included such collaborators as Oscar-nominated director of photography Don Burgess (Forrest Gump), his five-time editor Kirk Morri (The Conjuring), production designer Bill Brzeski (Iron Man 3), visual effects supervisor Kelvin McIlwain (Furious 7) and composer Rupert Gregson-Williams (Wonder Woman).

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Update 2018: Looking Back at our Coverage


 
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Mary Queen of Scots director Josie Rourke


by Iain Blair

Considering all the recent talk about the lack of opportunity for women in Hollywood, it’s apt that Josie Rourke, for her first feature, took on a recounting of the drama between two of the most famous women in history. Mary Queen of Scots, in theaters now, is the story of Mary Stuart and Queen Elizabeth I. This retelling of the turbulent life of Mary Stuart (Saoirse Ronan) and that of her English cousin Queen Elizabeth I (Margot Robbie) has all the deeply emotional interpersonal drama of an intense play. This is no surprise since Rourke is the artistic director of London’s prestigious Donmar Warehouse, where she’s staged acclaimed and groundbreaking productions. /t film offers a fresh take on the two strong women who occupy center stage in what was very much a man’s world.

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Director Barry Jenkins on his latest, If Beale Street Could Talk


by Iain Blair

Barry Jenkins’ If Beale Street Could Talk, a follow-up to his Oscar-winning Moonlight, looks certain to be an awards show darling. It has already picked up three Golden Globe noms — Best Drama Motion Picture, Best Screenplay for Jenkins and Best Supporting Actress for Regina King. Based on the 1974 novel by writer and civil rights activist James Baldwin, the film tells the story of a young black couple — Clementine “Tish” Rivers (KiKi Layne) and Alonzo “Fonny” Hunt (Stephan James) — who grow up together in Harlem and get engaged. But their romantic dreams soon begin to dissolve under the harsh glare of white authority and racism when Fonny is falsely accused of rape and thrown in jail, just as Tish realizes she is pregnant with their child.

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Director Peter Farrelly gets serious with Green Book


by Iain Blair

Director, producer and writer Peter Farrelly is best known for the classic comedies he made with his brother Bob: Dumb and Dumber; There’s Something About Mary; Shallow Hal; Me; Myself & Irene; The Three Stooges and Fever Pitch. But for all their over-the-top, raunchy and boundary-pushing comedy, those movies were always sweet-natured at heart. Now Farrelly has taken his gift for heartfelt comedy and put his stamp on a very different kind of film, Green Book, a racially charged feel-good drama inspired by a true friendship that transcended race, class and the 1962 Mason-Dixon line. Starring Oscar-nominee Viggo Mortensen and Oscar-winner Mahershala Ali, it tells the fact-based story of the ultimate odd couple: Tony Lip, a bouncer from The Bronx and Dr. Don Shirley, a world-class black pianist.

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Special Edition: Storage Update 2018


by Karen Moltenbrey

The world of storage is ever changing and complicated. There are many flavors that are meant to match up to specific workflow needs. What matters most to users? In addition to easily-installed and easy-to-use systems that let them focus on the creative and not the tech? Scalability, speed, data protection, the cloud and the need to handle higher and higher frame rates with higher resolutions — meaning larger and larger files. The good news is the tools are growing to meet these needs. New technologies and software enhancements around NVMe are providing extremely low-latency connectivity that supports higher performance workflows. Time will tell how that plays a part in day-to-day workflows. We’ve interviewed pros from all over the post production spectrum. Find out all you need to know about storage…

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Steve McQueen on directing Widows


by Iain Blair

ritish director/writer/producer Steve McQueen burst onto the international scene in 2013 when his harrowing 12 Years a Slave dominated awards season, winning an Oscar, a Golden Globe, a BAFTA and a host of others. McQueen, who also helmed the 2011 feature Shame (Michael Fassbender and Carey Mulligan), is back with the film Widows. A taut thriller, 20th Century Fox’s Widows is set in contemporary Chicago in a time of political and societal turmoil. When four armed robbers are killed in a botched heist, their widows — with nothing in common except a debt left behind by their dead husbands’ criminal activities — take fate into their own hands to forge a future on their own terms. The production team includes Academy Award-nominated editor Joe Walker (12 Years a Slave), Academy Award-winning production designer Adam Stockhausen (The Grand Budapest Hotel) and DP Sean Bobbit (12 Years a Slave).

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DJI’s Mavic Air lightweight drone


 

Since the first DJI Phantom was released in January of 2013, drones have found a place in our industry. Turn on almost any television show airing on National Geographic and you will see some sort of drone videography at work. Over the last decade, DJI and GoPro have revolutionized how everyone shoots. Nowadays drones are expected to be a part of every cameraperson’s kit. Once DJI released their second-generation flagship drone, the Mavic Pro, the quality of footage and still frame images went from prosumer-level to professional. One thing that has always been a tough sell for me with drones is the physical size of the unmanned aerial vehicles. The original DJI flagship drone, the Phantom, is a little big; you essentially need a duffle-sized backpack to carry it and its accessories. But now DJI has upped the ante with a smaller footprint — the Mavic Air.

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Catching Up: Oscar-winning director Damien Chazelle


by Iain Blair

It’s been two years since I interviewed writer and director Damien Chazelle about his hit movie La La Land. While he only had three feature films on his short resume at the time, Chazelle was already viewed by the industry as a promising major talent. That promise was fulfilled in a big way when La La Land — a follow-up to his 2014 release Whiplash — earned 14 Academy Award nominations, winning six awards, including Best Director for Chazelle. Recently, Chazelle reteamed with that film’s star, Ryan Gosling, who plays astronaut Neil Armstrong in Universal Pictures’ First Man, the story behind the first manned mission to the moon. Focusing on Armstrong and the decade leading to the Apollo 11 flight, it’s an intimate account that puts the audience squarely inside the planes and rockets, fully immersing the viewer in the exciting and terrifying test flights and space missions.

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House of Cards showrunners Melissa James Gibson and Frank Pugliese


by Iain Blair

Since it first premiered back in 2013, Netflix’s political thriller House of Cards has been delivering provocative, twisty plot lines peppered with surprises and shocks. It has also racked up dozens of awards, including 33 Primetime Emmys and fistfuls of Golden Globes along the way. But the biggest shocker of all was probably the real-life firing of star Kevin Spacey last year by Netflix, following allegations of sexual misconduct. With Spacey now MIA, Robin Wright’s character is now President of the United States in Season 6, the final season of the series, which is now streaming on Netflix. Behind the scenes, Melissa James Gibson and Frank Pugliese continue as showrunners for Season 6, and serve as executive producers along with Robin Wright, David Fincher, Joshua Donen, Dana Brunetti, Eric Roth, Michael Dobbs and Andrew Davies.

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Sponsored: PNY Q&A – Quadro RTX for Realtime Ray Tracing and More


 

PNY, an authorized NVIDIA Quadro partner, is helping to bring new tools to artists working in graphics and animation. One of the newest updates in technology is NVIDIA’s Quadro RTX line of graphics boards, which offers a fusion of realtime ray tracing, deep learning and advanced shading. We recently reached out to PNY’s Carl Flygare to find out more about the technology and how creatives can benefit.

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Tom Cross talks about editing First Man


by Barry Goch

As a child, First Man editor Tom Cross was fascinated with special effects and VFX in films. So much so that he would take out library books that went behind the scenes on movies and focused on special effects. He had a particular interest in the artists who made miniature spacecraft, which made working on Damien Chazelle’s First Manfeel like it was meant to be. “When I learned that Damien wanted to use miniatures and do in-camera effects on this film, my childhood and adulthood kind of joined hands,” shares Cross, who is now a frequent collaborator of Chazelle’s, having cut Whiplash, La La Land and now First Man.

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Color for Feature Films


by Karen Moltenbrey

Just as with episodic series, making the right color choices can greatly impact a film and its storytelling. While the look and mood of a project is set by the director and DP, colorists may face creative decisions while delivering those desired results, even when nature or other factors prevent it from being captured on set. As a result of their work, colorists help set the atmosphere, tone, emotion and depth of a project. They help guide storylines and audiences’ reactions to what is playing out on screen. They can make us happy, sad, scared or thrilled. And, they can make us fall in love, or out of love, with a character.

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Tamara Jenkins on writing, directing the Netflix film Private Life


by Iain Blair

Writer/director Tamara Jenkins has never been shy about mining her personal life for laughs and tears — or taking her time with a project. Her debut feature film, 1998’s semi-autobiographical dark comedy Slums of Beverly Hills, which she wrote and directed, was partly based on growing up poor in the mega-wealthy city. Nearly a decade later, she premiered The Savages at Sundance. The comedy, starring Philip Seymour Hoffman and Laura Linney as neurotic siblings dealing with their dementia-afflicted father, went on to receive two Oscar noms — a Best Actress nod for Linney and a Best Original Screenplay nod for Jenkins. Now, another decade later, Jenkins and her husband’s own real-life struggle to have a child has provided fertile material for her new film, Private Life, which stars Kathryn Hahn and Paul Giamatti.

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The Hate U Give director George Tillman, Jr.


by Iain Blair

The Hate U Give is ripped-from-the-headlines story and a work of fiction based on the New York Times bestseller of the same name by Angie Thomas. It features Amandla Stenberg (The Hunger Games) as Starr, a 16-year-old who witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend by a police officer. Starr lives in a working-class community with her close-knit family.  The Hate U Give is deftly and intelligently directed by George Tillman, Jr., whose credits include Soul Food, Notorious and Men of Honor. The behind-the-scenes creative team includes director of photography Mihai Malaimare Jr., production designer William Arnold, editors Craig Hayes and Alex Blatt (Dawn of the Planet of the Apes) and composer Dustin O’Halloran.

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Sony Imageworks provides big effects and animation for Warner’s Smallfoot


by Randi Altman

The legend of Bigfoot: a giant, hairy, bipedal creature roaming the forests and giving humans just enough of a glimpse to freak them out. Sightings have been happening for centuries, with no sign of slowing down — seriously, Google it. But what if that story was turned around, and it was Bigfoot who was freaked out by Smallfoot (aka a human)? Well, that is exactly the premise of the new Warner Bros. film Smallfoot, directed by Karey Kirkpatrick. It’s based on the book “Yeti Tracks” by Sergio Pablos. Sony Pictures Imageworks was tasked with all of the animation and visual effects work on the film, while Warner Animation did all of the front end work — such as adapting the script, production design, editing, directing, producing and more. We reached out to Imageworks VFX supervisor Karl Herbst (Hotel Transylvania 2) to find out more about creating the animation and effects for Smallfoot.

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Enhancing BlacKkKlansman’s tension with Foley


by Jennifer Walden

Director Spike Lee’s latest film, BlacKkKlansman is based on Ron Stallworth’s true story of infiltrating the Colorado Springs chapter of the Ku Klux Klan back in the 1970s. After seeing a recruitment ad for the KKK, Stallworth, who was a detective for the Colorado Springs police department, decided to call the head of the local Klan chapter. He claimed he was a racist white man wanting to join the Klan. Stallworth asked his co-worker Flip Zimmerman to act as Stallworth when dealing with the Klan face-to-face. The Emmy-award winning team of Foley artist Marko Costanzo and Foley engineer George Lara at c5 Sound in New York City were tasked with recreating the sound of the ‘70s — from electric typewriters and rotary phones at police headquarters to the creak of leather jackets that were so popular in that era.

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IBC Update: 2018 Video Coverage – Edition Two


 

At IBC 2018, postPerspective TV shot interviews around the show floor in an effort to deliver IBC to those who couldn’t make the trip to Amsterdam and to those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all. We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent. Click here to see our full archive!

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IBC Update: 2018 Video Coverage – Edition One


 

At IBC 2018, postPerspective TV shot interviews around the show floor in an effort to deliver IBC to those who couldn’t make the trip to Amsterdam and to those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all. We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent. Click here to see our full archive!

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The Little Stranger director Lenny Abrahamson


by Iain Blair

Lenny Abrahamson, the Irish director who helmed the cult indies Frank, What Richard Did, Adam & Paul and Garage, burst onto the international scene in 2015 with the harrowing drama Room. The claustrophobic tale — of a woman and her young son kept prisoner in a 10×10-foot garden shed — earned four Oscar nominations, including Best Picture and Best Director, and won the Best Actress Oscar and BAFTA for lead Brie Larson. Now Abrahamson is back with a new film, Focus Features’ The Little Stranger, which swaps the tight confines of Room for the sprawling, light and airy expanses of a huge English country home. But don’t be fooled by appearances. Abrahamson begins to twist the screws from the very start of the film, which is part ghost story, part murder mystery.

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Special Edition: postPerspective Camera Update


 

There was a time, not so long ago, when cameras only came in one flavor: film. Now shooters have a veritable buffet of camera choices, from those that fit on a helmet to those shooting feature films, and everything in between. And the choices at that buffet grow even larger when you look at the host of accessories available today.

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Sponsored: DigitalGlue — Partnering with Clients From Shoot to Screen


 

DigitalGlue has been supporting the industry since 2002. As a systems integrator, the company makes sure to ask the right questions of clients in order to determine what is right for their particular workflows. When they felt the industry could benefit from a different type of storage model, they set out to develop a new solution. Who better to recognize the need and develop a product and service for this industry than a working post professional? That’s the case with colorist Nick Anderson, product manager for post production solutions at DigitalGlue. After years of working in this industry, Anderson has a very specific knowledge of what works and what doesn’t within the post workflow.

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The Meg: What does a giant shark sound like?


by Jennifer Walden

The Meg has everything you want in a blockbuster. There are explosions, submarines, giant prehistoric sharks and beaches full of innocent swimmers. Along with the action, it has comedy, suspense and jump scares. Best of all, it sounds amazing in Dolby Atmos. The team at E² Sound, led by supervising sound editors Erik Aadahl, Ethan Van der Ryn and Jason Jennings, created a soundscape that wraps around the audience like a giant squid around a submersible. (By the way, that squid vs. submersible scene is so fun for sound!) We spoke with the E² Sound crew about the details of their recording sessions for the film. They talk about how they approached the sound for the megalodons, how they used the Atmos surround field to put the audience underwater and much more.

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Crafting sound for Emmy- nominated Atlanta


by Jennifer Walden

Told through vignettes, each episode of FX’s Atlanta shows the main characters’ lives from different perspectives instead of through a running narrative. This provides endless possibilities for creativity. One episode flows through different rooms at a swanky New Year’s party. Another ventures deep into the creepy woods where real animals (not party animals) make things tense. It’s a playground for sound each week, and MPSE-award-winning supervising sound editor Trevor Gates from Formosa Group and his sound editorial team on Season 2 (aka, Robbin’ Season) earned an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Sound Editing For A Comedy Or Drama (Half-Hour). The nod was for their work on Episode 6 “Teddy Perkins.”

 

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Breathing life into The Walking Dead with visual effects


by Karen Moltenbrey

The Walking Dead’s rise in popularity started almost immediately with the series’ US debut on October 31, 2010 on AMC. The storyline began when sheriff’s deputy Rick Grimes woke up from a coma to find the world overrun by zombies. He and other survivors in the Atlanta area then banded together to fight off these so-called “walkers,” as well as other tribes of survivors intent on ensuring their own survival in this post-apocalyptic world, no matter the cost. In mid-2015, the show gave rise to the companion series Fear the Walking Dead. Fear, a prequel to The Walking Dead, takes place at the start of the zombie apocalypse and follows a different set of characters as they struggle to survive on the West Coast. Burbank’s Picture Shop began creating the effects for Walk last season and is now in the midst of Season 9 (the studio splits the lion’s share of the work on the show with Goodbye Kansas Studios). Picture Shop provides visual effects for Fear, as… Continue Reading

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Showrunner/EP Robert Carlock talks Netflix’s Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt


by Iain Blair

When Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt first premiered back in 2015, the sitcom seemed quite shocking — and not just because NBC sold it off to Netflix so quickly. While at the streaming service, it has been a big hit with audiences and critics alike, racking up dozens of industry awards and nominations, including 18 Primetime Emmy nominations. Created by Tina Fey and Robert Carlock, the sunny comedy with a dark premise stars Ellie Kemper as the title character. She moves to New York City after being rescued from an underground bunker where she and three other women were held captive for 15 years by a doomsday cult leader (Jon Hamm). I recently spoke with Carlock about making the show, the Emmys and the planned movie version.

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The Darkest Minds director Jennifer Yuh Nelson


by Iain Blair

Jennifer Yuh Nelson has been an acclaimed — and highly bankable — director in animation for years, thanks to her work on the billion-dollar-grossing Kung Fu Pandafranchise from DreamWorks. Now she’s taken on her first live-action film with Fox’s The Darkest Minds. Adapted from the best-selling book by Alexandra Bracken, the first in a YA trilogy, the film stars Amandla Stenberg in the lead as Ruby. The Darkest Minds also features adults, including Mandy Moore and Bradley Whitford, but revolves around a group of teens who mysteriously develop powerful new abilities and are then declared a threat by the government and detained. It’s essentially a genre mash-up — a road movie with some sci-fi elements and lots of kinetic action.

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Mission: Impossible — Fallout writer/director Christopher McQuarrie


by Iain Blair

It’s hard to believe, but it’s been 22 years since Tom Cruise first launched the Mission: Impossible franchise. Since then, it’s become a global phenomenon that’s grossed more than $2.8 billion, making it one of the most successful series in movie history. With Mission: Impossible — Fallout, Cruise reprises his role of Impossible Missions Force (IMF) team leader Ethan Hunt for the sixth time. And writer/director/producer Christopher McQuarrie, who directed the series’ previous film Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation, also returns. That makes him the first filmmaker ever to return to direct a second film in a franchise where one of its signature elements is that there’s been a different director for every movie.

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Emmy Season: Audio post for Netflix docu-series Wild Wild Country


by Jennifer Walden

Wild Wild Country, the six-part docu-series created by brothers Chapman and Maclain Way, tells the true story of what happened to a small town in Oregon after a religious cult set up their “utopian” city on a nearby ranch. This seven-hour documentary premiered in its entirety at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival and is currently available to stream on Netflix. It was also nominated for five Emmy Awards, including for Outstanding Documentary or Non-Fiction Series. Wild Wild Country is a mix of archival news footage from the ‘80s and footage shot by the Rajneeshees, particularly in their own camp.  The result is a story that’s almost too twisted to be true. Emmy award-winning supervising sound editor Brent Kiser an his team at LA’s Unbridled Sound are recipients of one of the show’s five Emmy noms for their work on Wild Wild Country.

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Kari Skogland — Emmy-nominated director of The Handmaid’s Tale


by Iain Blair

From day one, the striking images of pure white bonnets with blood-red cloaks in Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale have come to symbolize one thing: the oppression of women. The show just received 20 Emmy nominations, including eight acting noms and a second nod for best drama series. Many of the most searing episodes were directed by the award-winning Kari Skogland. As CEO of Mad Rabbit, which launched in 2016, Skogland produces one-hour dramas for the international market while she continues her work as a director on The Handmaid’s Tale and the upcoming pilot for Starz’s The Rook. Skogland was included in the 2018 Emmy nominations with recognition of her directing work on the Season 2 episode “After.”

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Score for YouTube Red’s Cobra Kai pays tribute to Karate Kid


by Jennifer Walden

In the YouTube Red comedy series Cobra Kai, Daniel LaRusso (Ralph Macchio), the young hero of the Karate Kid movies, has grown up to be a prosperous car salesman, while his nemesis Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka) just can’t seem to shake that loser label he earned so long ago. Johnny can’t hold down his handy-man job. He lives alone in a dingy apartment and his personality hasn’t benefited from maturity at all. He lives a very sad reality until the day he finds himself sticking up for a kid being bullied, and that redeeming bit of character makes you root for him. It’s an interesting dynamic that the series writers/showrunners have crafted, and it works.

Fans of the 1980’s film franchise will appreciate the soundtrack of the new Cobra Kai series.

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Creator Justin Simien talks Netflix’s Dear White People


by Iain Blair

The television graveyard is bursting at the seams with failed adaptations of hit movies. But there are rare exceptions, such as Netflix’s acclaimed hit comedy Dear White People, which creator Justin Simien adapted from his 2014 indie movie of the same name. The film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, where it won the Special Jury Award for Breakthrough Talent. Simien went on to also win Best First Screenplay and a nomination for Best First Feature at the Independent Spirit Awards.
Now a series on Netflix and enjoying its second season (it was just picked up for its third!), this college dramedy is set at Winchester University, a fictional, predominantly white Ivy League college, where racial tensions bubble just below the surface.

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Special Edition: Color Update


 

The number of things you can do with color in today’s world is growing daily. It’s not just about creating a look anymore, it’s using color to tell or enhance a story. And because filmmakers recognize this power, they are getting colorists involved in the process earlier than ever before. And while the industry is excited about HDR and all it offers, this process also creates its own set of challenges and costs.

To find out what those in the trenches are thinking, we reached out to makers of color gear as well as hands-on colorists in an effort to figure out today’s trends and challenges.

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Showtime’s Homeland: Producer and director Lesli Linka Glatter


by Iain Blair

Since it first premiered back in 2011, the provocative, edgy and timely spy thriller Homeland has been a huge hit with audiences and critics alike. It has also racked up dozens of awards, including Primetime Emmys and Golden Globes. The show, which features an impressive cast — namely Claire Danes and Mandy Patinkin — is Showtime’s number one drama series. Produced by Fox 21 Television Studios, it was developed for American television by Alex Gansa and Howard Gordon. Homeland is based on Gideon Raff’s Israeli series, Prisoners of War. Homeland producer Lesli Linka Glatter is an award-winning director of film and episodic dramas. To say her career has been prolific is an understatement. I recently spoke with Glatter about making Homeland, the Emmys, her love of post production and mentoring other women.

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Netflix’s Lost in Space: New sounds for a classic series


by Jennifer Walden

Netflix’s Lost in Space, a remake of the 1965 series, is a playground for sound. In the first two episodes alone, the series introduces at least five unique environments, including an alien planet, a whole world of new tech (from wristband communication systems to medical analysis devices),
new modes of transportation, an organic-based robot lifeform and its correlating technologies, a massive explosion in space and so much more. It was a mission not easily undertaken, but if anyone could manage it, it was four-time Emmy Award-winning supervising sound editor Benjamin Cook of 424 Post in Culver City. He’s led the sound teams on series like Starz’s Black Sails, Counterpartand Magic City, as well as HBO’s The Pacific, Rome and Deadwood, to name a few.

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Showrunner Dan Pyne — Amazon’s Bosch


by Iain Blair

How popular is Amazon’s Emmy-nominated detective show Bosch? So much so that the streaming service ordered up Season 5 before Season 4 even debuted in April. This hour-long dramatic series is Amazon’s longest-running Prime Original. Based on the best-selling novels by Michael Connelly, the show stars Titus Welliver as LAPD homicide detective Harry Bosch. Season 4 kicked off with the murder of a high-profile attorney on the eve of his civil rights trial against the LAPD. Bosch was developed for television by Eric Overmyer and is executive produced by Dan Pyne, whose film credits include The Manchurian Candidate, Pacific Heights, Sum of All Fears and Fracture. He also co-created and co-produced The Street, a syndicated police procedural starring Stanley Tucci.

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Prolific writer/director Paul Schrader on his latest, First Reformed


by Iain Blair

Paul Schrader has enjoyed an iconic career. He wrote Martin Scorsese’s Taxi Driver, which was nominated for four Academy Awards including Best Picture. He reteamed with Robert De Niro and Scorsese on 1980’s boxing saga Raging Bull. That same year saw the release of American Gigolo, starring Richard Gere as a high-priced male escort, which Schrader wrote and directed. Schrader has also written and/or directed The Last Temptation of Christ, The Mosquito Coast, Cat People, The Comfort of Strangers, Affliction, Bringing Out The Dead (yet another Scorsese collaboration) and Dog Eat Dog.
In his new film, First Reformed (his 21st feature and 12th as writer/director), he examines a crisis of faith centered around a former military chaplain devastated by the death of his son in the Iraq War.

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Netflix’s Godless offers big skies and big sounds


by Jennifer Walden

One of the great storytelling advantages of non-commercial television is that content creators are not restricted by program lengths or episode numbers. The total number of episodes in a show’s season can be 13 or 10 or less. An episode can run 75 minutes or 33 minutes. Traditional rules don’t apply, and the story is allowed to dictate the length. This certainly was the case for writer/director/producer Scott Frank when creating his series Godless for Netflix. Award-winning sound designer Wylie Stateman, of Twenty Four Seven Sound, explains how this worked to their advantage.

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The Duffer Brothers: Showrunners on Netflix’s Stranger Things


by Iain Blair

Kids in jeopardy! The Hawkins Lab! The Demogorgon! The Upside Down! Since they first pitched their idea for Stranger Things, a love letter to 1980’s genre films set in 1983 Indiana, twin brothers Matt and Ross Duffer have quickly established themselves as masters of suspense in the horror and science-fiction genres. The series was picked up by Netflix, premiered in the summer of 2016, and went on to become a global phenomenon, with the brothers at the helm as writers, directors and executive producers.

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Pacific Rim: Uprising‘s big sound


by Jennifer Walden

Universal Pictures’ Pacific Rim: Uprising is a big action film, with monsters and mechs that are bigger than skyscrapers. When dealing with subject matter on this grand of a scale, there’s no better way to experience it than on a 50-foot screen with a seat-shaking sound system.  Pacific Rim: Uprising, directed by Steven DeKnight, is set 10 years after the Battle of the Breach and follows a new generation of Jaeger pilots that must confront the Kaiju. In terms of technological advancements, five years is a long time between films. It gave sound designers Ethan Van der Ryn and Erik Aadahl of E² Sound the opportunity to explore technology sounds for Pacific Rim: Uprising without being shackled to what they created for the first film.

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Il Postino director Michael Radford on his latest film, The Music of Silence


by Iain Blair

British director and writer Michael Radford is probably best known for Il Postino, a huge international hit that earned five Oscar noms, two BAFTA awards and a raft of other honors. Radford, who began as a director of documentaries, has returned to Italy with his newest film, The Music of Silence. Loosely based on Andrea Bocelli’s 1999 memoir of the same title, it tells the story of a blind boy who against all odds becomes one of the most successful entertainers and opera singers in the world. It stars Game of Thrones actor Toby Sebastian as the singer’s alter ego, Amos Bardi.

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Sponsored: Q&A – BOXX Focusing on Post and All That Surrounds It


 

Workstations for VFX, VR, AI and the Future

With over 20 years of experience in the media and entertainment market, BOXX has a long history with the post production community. Their APEXX workstation line is the latest offering designed to support today’s complex workflows. We reached out to BOXX’s John Vondrak to find out more about the company and his take on workstation configurations for visual effects, virtual reality, artificial intelligence and what the future holds.

How does BOXX’s boutique-type operation stand out in a fairly crowded field of workstations?
Firstly, we are very proud that our systems are made and supported in the USA, including our chassis. The integration of only enterprise-class components, drives and customized BIOS also sets us apart from the one-size-fits-all workstation manufacturers. We guide our customers to the right tool for the job.

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Sponsored: Q&A – PNY’s New Mobile Workstation


 

PNY has been supporting the media and entertainment industry for years with NVIDIA Quadro professional graphics solutions. Last year they strayed just a bit from their typical offerings and created PREVAILPRO, a thin, lightweight and powerful workstation targeting our industry. We reached out to Carl Flygare, PNY’s Quadro product marketing manager, to find out more about these new mobile systems.

PNY is now offering a mobile workstation with the PREVAILPRO — a first for the company. Why now, and how did PNY’s history in the industry play a role?
The transition to GPUs from CPUs to facilitate and accelerate many facets of M&E workflows — such as rendering, character animation and physics-based simulation for VFX, along with digital cinema editing, effects, color grading and titling (among others) — makes this an ideal time to bring mobile workstations, designed from the GPU out, to market.

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Capturing and creating historical sounds for AMC’s The Terror


by Jennifer Walden

The opening overhead shot of the two ships in AMC’s new series The Terror gives the audience an idea of just how difficult life is for the crews of the HMS The Terror and the HMS Erebus. It’s a stunning view of the harsh environment, a view that was completely achieved with CGI and VFX because this series was actually shot on a soundstage. Supervising sound editor Lee Walpole, of Boom Post in London, says the first cut he got of that scene lacked the VFX, and therefore required a bit of imagination. “You have this shot above the ships looking down, and you see this massive green floor of the studio and someone dressed in a green suit pushing this boat across the floor. Then we got the incredible CGI, and you’d never know how it looked in that first cut. Ultimately, mostly everything in The Terror had to be imagined, recorded, treated and designed specifically for the show.”

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NAB Update: 2018 Video Coverage – Edition Three


 

At NAB 2018, postPerspective TV shot interviews around the show floor in an effort to deliver NAB to those who couldn’t make the trip to Vegas and to those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all. We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent.

Edition Two features: Filmic, Canon, Adobe, Black Box, Scale Logic, SGO, Foundry and Silverdraft.

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NAB Update: 2018 Video Coverage – Edition Two


 

At NAB 2018, postPerspective TV shot interviews around the show floor in an effort to deliver NAB to those who couldn’t make the trip to Vegas and to those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all. We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent.

Edition Two features: Maxon and 3D artist Tuesday McGowan, The Studio-B&H, FilmLight, Panasas, AJA, Panavision, Avid and HP.

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Creating the look for Netflix’s The End of the F***ing World


by Adrian Pennington

Content in 8K UHD won’t be transmitting or streaming its way to a screen anytime soon, but the ultra-high-resolution format is already making its mark. Remarkably, it’s high-end TV drama, rather than feature films, that is leading the way. The End of The F***ing World is the latest series to pioneer a workflow that gives its filmmakers a creative edge. Adapted from the award-winning graphic novels of Charles Forsman, the dark comedy is an eight-part co-production between Netflix and UK broadcaster Channel 4. The series invites viewers into the confused lives of teen outsiders James (Alex Lawther) and Alyssa (Jessica Barden), as they decide to escape from their families and embark on a road trip to find Alyssa’s estranged father.

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NAB Update: 2018 Video Coverage – Edition One


 

At NAB 2018, postPerspective TV shot interviews around the show floor in an effort to deliver NAB to those who couldn’t make the trip to Vegas and to those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all.

We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent.

Edition One features: Blackmagic Design, Sim, Supersphere, Assimilate, Cinnafilm, Quantum, Xytech and Dell EMC.

 

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NAB Update: First thoughts — Fusion in Resolve, ProRes RAW…


by Mike McCarthy

These are my notes from the first day I spent browsing the NAB Show floor this year in Las Vegas. When I walked into the South Lower Hall, Blackmagic was the first thing I saw. And, as usual, they had a number of new products this year. The headline item is the next version of DaVinci Resolve, which now integrates the functionality of their Fusion VFX editor within the program. While I have never felt Resolve to be a very intuitive program for my own work, it is a solution I recommend to others who are on a tight budget, as it offers the most functionality for the price, especially in the free version.

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Director Kay Cannon on her raunchy comedy Blockers


by Iain Blair

At a time when women are increasingly breaking down barriers in Hollywood, writer/ director Kay Cannon is helping lead the charge. The director of Universal’s new film, Blockers, got her start at such comedic training grounds as The Second City, The iO West Theater and The ComedySportz Theatre. While writing and performing around Chicago, she met Tina Fey, a fellow Second City alumna. When Fey began 30 Rock, Cannon joined the creative team and worked her way up from staff writer to supervising producer on the hit show. Cannon has now stepped behind the camera on Blockers and made an assured and polished directorial debut with this coming-of-age sex comedy.

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Sponsored: Q&A – Storage for Data-Intensive Jobs


 

Panasas ActiveStor Scale-Out NAS fpr Post, VFX, VR, AI and More

Panasas has been engaging with the media and entertainment market in recent years, studying workflows and partnering with companies to better understand their needs. Their ActiveStor scalable NAS is designed for data-intensive jobs, including those in post, visual effects, virtual reality and AI. We reached out to Panasas’ David Sallak to find out more about the company and its offerings.

What type or types of storage do you offer for the M&E world?
I love a good back story, and I think ours is a great one. Panasas has been a leader in HPC for more than a decade. As more HPC capabilities are desired by M&E content producers, we are the best ones to bring it there.

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Color plays key role in Ava DuVernay’s A Wrinkle in Time


 

Color itself plays a significant role in the fantasy feature A Wrinkle in Time. To help get the look she wanted, director Ava DuVernay chose Mitch Paulson of Hollywood’s Efilm to handle final color grading — the two worked together on the Oscar-nominated film SelmaWrinkle, which was shot by DP Tobias Schliessler, captures the magical feel of lead character Meg’s journey through time and space. The film has several different looks. The rather gloomy appearance of the girl’s difficult life on Earth is contrasted by the incredibly vibrant appearance of the far-off planets she’s taken to by a trio of magical women — portrayed by Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon and Mindy Kaling.

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Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool director Paul McGuigan


by Iain Blair

Director and producer Paul McGuigan has made quite a name for himself in film and TV (Sherlock) thanks to his gift for handling gritty crime procedurals and atmospheric dramas. McGuigan’s latest movie is Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool. Based on Peter Turner’s memoir of the same name, the film follows the playful but passionate relationship between Peter Turner (Jamie Bell) and the eccentric Oscar-winning actress Gloria Grahame (Annette Bening) in 1978 Liverpool. What starts as a vibrant affair between a legendary femme fatale and her young lover quickly grows into a deeper relationship, with Peter being the person Gloria turns to for comfort. Their passion and lust for life is tested to the limits by events beyond their control.

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Sponsored: Q&A – Cinnafilm Eyes the End-Game


 

PixelStrings — Conversions for All Formats, Frame Rates via the Cloud

Cinnafilm, which has been an industry fixture for close to a decade, has always been interested in finding ways to make pictures look better at a reasonable price. Their latest product doesn’t veer from that goal — PixelStrings combines Cinnafilm’s image processing technology with cloud computing and storage, and it’s accessible via a web browser. We reached out to Cinnafilm founder and CEO Lance Maurer to find out more about the company’s evolution and its latest product.

You’ve been offering technology in this industry for years with Cinnafilm and its products. Can you talk about how that all began and how it led to PixelStrings?
I love a good back story, and I think ours is a great one. As with any technology, Cinnafilm was born from a recognized technological gap in what was available to me as a creative.

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Netflix’s Altered Carbon: the look, the feel, the post


by Randi Altman

Netflix’s Altered Carbon is a new sci-fi series set in a dystopian future where people are immortal thanks to something called “stacks,” which contain their entire essence — their personalities, their memories, everything. The one setback is that unless you are a Meth (one of the rich and powerful), you need to buy a “sleeve” (body) for your stack, and it might not have any resemblance to your former self. It could be a different color, a different sex, a different age, a different everything. You have to take what you can get. We reached out to the show’s colorist, Jill Bogdanowicz, as well as post producer Allen Marshall Palmer to find out more about the show’s varied and distinctive looks.

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Sound Reality: Clint Eastwood’s latest, The 15:17 to Paris


by Jennifer Walden

Films based on true stories are always popular, and Oscar-winning director Clint Eastwood has made his share, including Sully and American Sniper, as well as Flags of Our Fathersand Letters From Iwo Jima. While those stories were inspired by real people/events, Eastwood has ramped up the reality a notch with his latest. The 15:17 to Paris — about three men who thwarted a terrorist attack on a train from Amsterdam to Paris — features the actual trio of heroes, Spencer Stone, Anthony Sadler and Alek Skarlatos, as themselves. Working with non-actors on a feature film could be challenging, so before deciding to cast the heroes in the film, Eastwood did a test run.

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Oscar-nominated director Jordan Peele on Get Out


by Iain Blair

Get Out, the feature film debut of comedian-turned-director Jordan Peele, is chock full of shocks and surprises. This multi-layered horror film also shocked a lot of people in the industry when it went on to gross over a quarter of a billion dollars — on a $4.5 million budget — making it one of the most profitable films in Hollywood history. But those shocks are nothing compared to the ones Peele and his movie generated when it scooped up four major Oscar nominations, including Best Picture and Best Director (in a very strong Best Director year, Peele beat out the likes of Steven Spielberg, Ridley Scott and Martin McDonagh). His first film stars Daniel Kaluuya, Allison Williams, Catherine Keener and Bradley Whitford.

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Michael Semanick: Mixing SFX, Foley for Star Wars: The Last Jedi


by Jennifer Walden

Oscar-winning re-recording mixer Michael Semanick from Skywalker Sound mixed the sound effects, Foley and backgrounds on Star Wars: The Last Jedi, which has earned an Oscar nom for Sound Mixing. Technically, this is not Semanick’s first experience with the Star Wars franchise — he’s credited as an additional mixer on Rogue One — but on The Last Jedi he was a key figure in fine-tuning the film’s soundtrack. He worked alongside re-recording mixers Ren Klyce and David Parker, and with director Rian Johnson, to craft a soundtrack that was bold and dynamic. (Look for Part 2 of our Star Wars audio coverage next week, in which re-recording mixer Ren Klyce talks about his approach to mixing John Williams’ score.)

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The Shape of Water’s sound mixing team


 

Post production sound mixers Christian Cooke and Brad Zoern, who are nominated (with production mixer Glen Gauthier) for their work on Fox’s The Shape of Water, have sat side-by-side at mixing consoles for nearly a decade. The frequent collaborators, who handle mixing duties at Deluxe Toronto, faced an unusual assignment given that the film’s two lead characters never utter a single word of actual dialogue. In The Shape of Water, which has been nominated for 13 Academy Awards, Elisa (Sally Hawkins) is mute and the creature she falls in love with makes undefined sounds. This creative choice placed more than the usual amount of importance on the rest of the soundscape to support the story.

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The Big Sick director Michael Showalter


by Iain Blair

If life is stranger than fiction, then the acclaimed Oscar-nominated film The Big Sick is Exhibit A. Based on the unlikely real-life courtship between Pakistani comedian/writer Kumail Nanjiani and writer/producer Emily V. Gordon, it tells the story of Kumail (playing a version of himself), who connects with grad student Emily (Zoe Kazan) after one of his standup sets. However, what they thought would be just a one-night stand blossoms into the real thing, which complicates the life that is expected of Kumail by his traditional Muslim parents.

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VFX supervisor Lesley Robson-Foster on Amazon’s Mrs. Maisel


by Randi Altman

If you are one of the many who tend to binge-watch streaming shows, you’ve likely already seen Amazon’s The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. This new comedy focuses on a young wife and mother living in New York City in 1958, when men worked and women, well, didn’t. After her husband leaves her, Mrs. Maisel chooses stand-up comedy over therapy — or you could say stand-up comedy chooses her. The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, created by Amy Sherman-Palladino and Dan Palladino, is colorful and bright and features a significant amount of visual effects — approximately 80 per episode. We reached out to the show’s visual effects supervisor, Lesley Robson-Foster, to find out more.

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Sponsored: Blackmagic Q&A: Edit, Sound and Color in Resolve 14


 

Over the last few years, Blackmagic Design has been adding more and more nonlinear editing tools to its color grading software DaVinci Resolve. The company’s most recent update offers all of its color grading goodness, plus collaborative workflows and Fairlight professional audio tools within the software. A lot of pros have questions about DaVinci Resolve 14 and how they might be able to use it as a full-time NLE, in addition to its other offerings. So we reached out to Blackmagic’s Paul Saccone to learn more about Resolve’s path to an all-in-one post system.

While Resolve began as a color grading tool, Blackmagic has added a full NLE. Why was it important to add editing tools to this software? 
Blackmagic Design was built by production and post pros, so we understand the needs of editors and colorists. Resolve was already a widely used color grading tool, so adding editorial features was a very logical path for us.

Our latest version, DaVinci… Continue Reading

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Tatiana Riegel on editing the dark comedy I, Tonya


by Randi Altman

I, Tonya is sad and funny and almost unbelievable in the sense that this — or a version of this — actually did happen. It’s also a fantastic movie. Some of us are old enough to remember when the Tonya Harding/Nancy Kerrigan “Why?!” incident took place. I think we all knew at the time that what was playing out was more like a soap opera and less like figure skating. Thanks to the Craig Gillespie-directed I, Tonya, everyone gets a behind-the-scenes glimpse of what led up to that assault, and it’s not pretty. I, Tonya’s editor, Tatiana S. Riegel, ACE, is a long-time collaborator of Gillespie’s, having worked with him now on five features and the pilot for the TV series United States of Tara for Showtime.

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Dee Rees on directing Mudbound


by Iain Blair

Change is good, and while there are only a handful of young, black female directors shooting features these days, the tide is starting to turn. Case in point: Dee Rees, who is helping lead the charge with her new feature Mudbound, which was nominated for two Golden Globe awards. Set in the rural American South during World War II, it’s an epic story of two families pitted against one another by a ruthless social hierarchy, yet bound together by the shared farmland of the Mississippi Delta. Mudbound was co-written by Rees, who made her feature film debut with Pariah, which won a ton of awards. She went on to direct the Emmy-Award-winning HBO film Bessie.

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Editor Sidney Wolinsky and Guillermo del Toro team up on The Shape of Water


by Randi Altman

People love movies for their ability to transport us to another world, or another version of our world, and that’s exactly what Guillermo del Toro’s magical The Shape of Water does. He shows us that even without words, love and compassion can overcome all — even if that love is between a human and a sea creature. And speaking of love, the film has been getting some now that awards season is upon us. The Shape of Water was nominated for seven Golden Globes, leading all other films in terms of nods, and won two: Best Director — Motion Picture for del Toro and Best Original Score for Alexandre Desplat.

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A Conversation: Lady Bird director Greta Gerwig and editor Nick Houy


by Amy Leland

There are moments as a filmmaker, and as someone who writes about filmmaking, when I get to have special and unexpected experiences. One of the best recent ones was a chat I had with writer/director Greta Gerwig and editor Nick Houy about their collaboration on A24’s Lady Bird, which is actress Gerwig’s directorial debut and a semi-autobiographical version of her youth. The critically beloved film — which was nominated for four Golden Globes — follows a high school senior from Sacramento, California, trying to navigate her last year at home, her tumultuous relationship with her mother, boys and her quest to get away from it all.

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Craig Gillespie on directing I, Tonya


by Iain Blair

If you haven’t seen I, Tonya, the latest dark comedy from Aussie director Craig Gillespie (Lars and the Real Girl), get your skates on and rush over to the nearest cineplex for a treat. This festival fave (it just earned three Golden Globe noms and a host of others) is based on the unbelievable but true events surrounding infamous American figure skater Tonya Harding and one of the most sensational scandals in sports history. Though Harding was the first American woman to complete a triple axel in competition, her legacy was forever tarnished by her association with an ill-conceived and even more poorly executed attack on fellow Olympic competitor Nancy Kerrigan.

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Sponsored: Build 8K Workflows Powered by NVIDIA


 

The naysayers might say, “8K, already? Why?” But the world continues to evolve, and so does technology. Post production apps are already embracing 8K, including Premiere Pro, SGO Mistika, Autodesk Flame and Blackmagic DaVinci Resolve, and NVIDIA GPUs are helping to power these workflows.

Camera manufacturers, such as RED and Sony are already there, and it’s not just for 2D work. Those working in VR/360 have access to 8K via GoPros and other 360 camera rigs.

We reached out to Andrew Page, product manager, professional visualization at NVIDIA, to find out more about the progress of 8K and how NVIDIA is involved.

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Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri director Martin McDonagh


by Iain Blair

Playwright Martin McDonagh won an Oscar for Best Live Action Short Film for Six Shooter, his first foray into film, and followed that project with his feature film debut In Bruges. That gangster action/comedy premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2008 and won McDonagh a BAFTA Award and an Oscar nom for Best Original Screenplay. He followed that up with Seven Psychopaths. Nis latest film, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri stars Frances McDormand as a grieving and vengeful mother. After months have passed without any progress in her daughter’s murder case, she commissions three signs leading into town with a message directed at William Willoughby (Woody Harrelson), the town’s respected chief of police.

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John Gilroy, ACE, on editing Roman J. Israel, Esq.


by Amy Leland

John Gilroy, ACE, comes from an impressive storytelling family. His father, Frank D. Gilroy, was a Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright, as well as a screenwriter and director for film and television. His older brother Tony is a screenwriter and director. His fraternal twin Dan is also a screenwriter and director. Dan’s work includes the film Nightcrawler, and John’s latest editing project Roman J. Israel, Esq., which stars Denzel Washington. John’s editing credits include his brothers’ films Michael Clayton and Nightcrawler, as well as many others, including Warrior, Pacific Rim and Rogue One. We sat down with John to talk about that legacy, his path toward it and his most recent project, Roman J. Israel, Esq.The film stars Denzel Washington, and yes, it was written and directed by twin brother Dan.

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Update: Storage Special Edition 2017


 

In this issue we look at all types of storage and for all sorts of uses. We focus on visual effects, post production, tips for picking the right systems for your studio and how a post supervisor approaches storage.

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Richard Linklater on directing Last Flag Flying


by Iain Blair

Director Richard Linklater first made a name for himself back in 1991 with the acclaimed  independent release Slacker, an experimental narrative revolving around 24 hours in the lives of 100 characters. Since then he’s made the beloved Dazed and Confused, Before Sunrise, Before Sunset and Boyhood. His new film is the timely Last Flag Flying, is set in 2003 and tells the story of three soldiers — former Navy Corps medic Larry “Doc” Shepherd (Steve Carell) and former Marines Sal Nealon (Bryan Cranston) and Richard Mueller (Laurence Fishburne) — who reunite 30 years after they served together in Vietnam to bury Doc’s son, a young Marine killed in the Iraq War.

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Joe Wright on directing Darkest Hour


by Iain Blair

Maybe it’s something in the water, but Dunkirk and Winston Churchill seem to be popping up everywhere these days. While the British statesman and prime minister merely hovered unseen in the background of Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirkepic, he’s front-and-center in Joe Wright’s Darkest Hour. Working from a script by Anthony McCarten, Wright also assembled a stellar below-the-line team that included DP Bruno Delbonnel, editor Valerio Bonelli and composer Dario Marianelli.

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Kevin Tent, ACE, on directorial debut Crash Pad and editing Downsizing


by Randi Altman

To say that Kevin Tent, ACE, is a prolific editor is in no way hyperbole. He has cut some of the most celebrated films of the last few years as a frequent collaborator of Alexander Payne. They worked together on seven films, including Paramount’s upcoming Downsizing as well as About Schmidt, Sideways, The Descendants and Nebraska (for which Tent earned an Oscar nom). Other editing credits include Blow, Girl Interrupted and The Golden Compass. Not long ago, Tent left his dark editing room to step behind the camera for his directorial debut — the indie comedy Crash Pad, starring Domhnall Gleeson, Thomas Hayden Church, Christina Applegate and Nina Dobrev. Not too shabby a cast. Oh, and it’s funny. Even when not laughing, I found myself smiling.

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The A-List: LBJ director Rob Reiner


by Iain Blair

Director/producer/actor Rob Reiner has long been one of Hollywood’s most reliable, successful and versatile talents. Over the past three decades he’s created a beloved body of work in a diverse mixture of styles and genres that includes comedy (When Harry Met Sally, The American President), fantasy-adventure (The Princess Bride), satire (This Is Spinal Tap), suspense (Misery) and drama (Stand By Me, A Few Good Men). After Senate Majority Leader Lyndon Johnson loses the 1960 Democratic presidential nomination to Senator John F. Kennedy, he agrees to be his rival’s running mate. But once they win the election, despite his extensive legislative experience and shrewd political instincts, Johnson finds himself sidelined in the role of VP. That all changes when Kennedy is assassinated and Johnson is thrust into the presidency.

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Director Todd Haynes on making Wonderstruck


by Iain Blair

Writer/director Todd Haynes is a supreme visual stylist with a deep affection for period pieces and a masterly touch when it comes to dealing with such adult themes as desire, repression and regret. Now Haynes — who was Oscar-nominated for his Far From Heaven ’50s drama — brings those gifts and his sense of wonder and imagination to his new film Wonderstruck. Set in the 1920s and the 1970s, Wonderstruck tells the story of Ben and Rose, two deaf children from two different eras who secretly wish their lives were different. Ben longs for the father he has never known, while Rose dreams of a mysterious actress whose life she chronicles in a scrapbook.

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The sound of Netflix’s The Defenders


by Jennifer Walden

Netflix’s The Defenders combines the stories of four different Marvel shows already on the streaming service: Luke Cage, Daredevil, Iron Fist and Jessica Jones. Supervising sound editor Lauren Stephens, who works at Technicolor at Paramount, has earned two Emmy nominations for her sound editing work on Daredevil. And she supervised the sound for each of the aforementioned Marvel series, with the exception of Jessica Jones. So when it came to designing The Defenders she was very conscious of maintaining the specific sonic characteristics they had already established.

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Fear the Walking Dead: Encore colorist teams with DPs for parched look


 

The current season of AMC’s zombie-infused Fear the Walking Dead is set in a brittle, drought-plagued environment, which becomes progressively more parched as the story unfolds. So when production was about to commence, the show’s principals were concerned that the normally dry shoot locations in Mexico had undergone record rainfall. Pankaj Bajpai of Encore, who has color graded the series from the start, and the two new cinematographers hired for this season — Christopher LaVasseur and Scott Peck — conferred early on about how best to handle this surprising development.

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The A-List: Director Marc Webb on The Only Living Boy in New York


by Iain Blair

Marc Webb has directed movies both big and small. He made his feature film debut in 2009 with the low-budget indie rom-com (500) Days of Summer, which was nominated for two Golden Globes. He then went on to helm two recent The Amazing Spider-Man blockbusters. Webb isn’t just about the big screen. He directed and executive produced the TV series Limitless for CBS, based on the Bradley Cooper film, and is currently an EP and director of the CW’s Golden Globe-winning series Crazy Ex-Girlfriend. Now Webb, whose last film was the drama Gifted, released earlier this year, has again returned to his indie roots with The Only Living Boy in New York, starring Jeff Bridges, Kate Beckinsale, Pierce Brosnan, Cynthia Nixon, Callum Turner and Kiersey Clemons.

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The A-List: Victoria & Abdul director Stephen Frears


by Iain Blair

Much like the royal subjects of his new film Victoria & Abdul and his 2006 offering The Queen (which won him his second Oscar nomination), British director Stephen Frears has long been considered a national treasure. The director, now 76 years old, has had a long and prolific career that spans some five decades and that has embraced a wide variety of styles, themes and genres. His latest film, Victoria & Abdul, is a drama (spiced with a good dash of comedy) about the unlikely but real-life relationship between Queen Victoria and her Muslim Indian servant Abdul Karim.

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Mother! director Darren Aronofsky


by Iain Blair

Writer/director/producer Darren Aronofsky made a big splash when his debut feature Pi won the Director’s Award at the 1998 Sundance Film Festival. He then quickly followed that up with 2000’s acclaimed drama Requiem for a Dream. His latest film, Mother!, is another hard-to-categorize film — part horror story, part comedy, part fable, part psychological thriller — that stars Jennifer Lawrence and Javier Bardem as a married couple whose relationship is severely tested when uninvited guests suddenly arrive at their home, disrupting their tranquil existence and ultimately turning it into a literal war zone.

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IBC Update: Our Video Coverage – Edition Two


 

At IBC 2017, postPerspective TV shot interviews around the show floor in an effort to deliver IBC to those who couldn’t make the trip to Amsterdam and to those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all.

We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent.

This is the second of two video newsletters you will receive from us, but if you’d like to see more videos now, please click here to see our full archive!

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IBC Video Update: Edition One


 

At IBC 2017, postPerspective TV shot interviews around the show floor in an effort to deliver IBC to those who couldn’t make the trip to Amsterdam and to those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all.

We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent.

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The challenges of dialogue and ice in Game of Thrones ‘Beyond the Wall’


by Jennifer Walden

In HBO’s Game of Thrones, dragons and White Walkers get a lot of attention, but they’re not the sole draw for audiences. The stunning visual effects and sound design are just the gravy on the meat and potatoes of a story that has audiences asking for more. Every line of dialogue is essential for following the tangled web of storylines. It’s also important to take in the emotional nuances of the actors’ performances. Striking the balance between clarity and dynamic delivery isn’t an easy feat. At Formosa Group’s Hollywood location, an Emmy-winning post sound team works together to put as much of the on-set performances on the screen as possible.

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Colorist Stephen Nakamura on grading Stephen King’s It


by Randi Altman

A scary clown can be thanked for helping boost what had been a lackluster summer box office. In its first weekend, Stephen King’s It opened with an impressive $125 million. This horror film takes place in a seemingly normal small town, but of course things aren’t what they seem. And while most horror films set most of the action in shadowy darkness, the filmmakers decided to let a lot of this story unfold in the bright glow of daylight in order to make the most of the darkness that eventually takes over. That presented some interesting opportunities for Deluxe’s Company 3 veteran colorist Stephen Nakamura.

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Special Edition: VFX


 

Some contend that having a VFX supervisor present on set during production is a luxury; others deem it a necessity. Few, if any, see it as unnecessary. Today, more and more VFX supes can be found alongside directors and DPs during filming, advising and problem-solving, with the goal of saving valuable time and expense during production and, later, in post.

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Director Philippe Falardeau takes on boxing with Chuck


by Iain Blair

On the surface, French-Canadian director Philippe Falardeau — whose drama Monsieur Lazhar was Oscar-nominated for Best Foreign Language Film at the 84th Academy Awards — might appear to be an unusual choice to helm a boxing film. However, in his inspired hands, Chuck — the true story of Chuck Wepner, the first man to knock Muhammad Ali to the canvas while he was defending the title — lands a lot of impressive punches. Wepner was the inspiration behind Sylvester Stallone’s Oscar-winning Rocky franchise.

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Sponsored: Multidimensional Workflows, VR and More With SGO


 

Madrid-based SGO has been supplying tools for post production and its workflows for some time now. As the industry has evolved, so have SGO’s tools. We threw some questions at SGO CEO Miguel Angel Doncel and managing director Geoff Mills. Let’s find out more about this small company with big plans to help post artists streamline their varied workflows.

How did the company begin, and how has it evolved over the years?

Doncel: We started developing software in 1998. At that time, industry workflows were based on a lot of different products in order to deal with the different needs of the production process: editing, compositing, VFX, color, etc.

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Sponsored: QC Guide: Avoiding File Rejection and Additional Costs


 

A lot can go wrong in the world of file-based media. With the increasing number of delivery requirements, regulations and file types, and with so many more ways to get content to viewers, the linear supply chain is gone. That means the number and types of files to send has increased and the chance of making a mistake has gone up.

To learn more, we ran a few questions past Dominic Jackson, Telestream’s product manager for QC products, to see what he had to say about establishing a QC process for media distribution covering broadcast, agencies and post.

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Multidimensional workflows, VR and more with SGO


 

Madrid-based SGO has been supplying tools for post production and its workflows for some time now. As the industry has evolved, so have SGO’s tools. We threw some questions at SGO CEO Miguel Angel Doncel and managing director Geoff Mills. Let’s find out more about this small company with big plans to help post artists streamline their varied workflows.

How did the company begin, and how has it evolved over the years?
Doncel: We started developing software in 1998. At that time, industry workflows were based on a lot of different products in order to deal with the different needs of the production process: editing, compositing, VFX, color, etc. We thought that approach was not efficient, as it required a huge amount of time to send footage from one place to another.

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Veteran director Michael Apted on his latest film, Unlocked


by Iain Blair

Director Michael Apted’s movies range from Oscar- and Golden Globe-winning dramas (Coal Miner’s Daughter, Gorillas in the Mist) to films dealing with medical ethics (Extreme Measures), corporate whistleblowers (Class Action) and matters of faith (The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader). His latest film, Unlocked, is a pulpy, fast-moving spy thriller which, like many of Apted’s films, stars a woman in the lead role — Noomi Rapace plays a CIA agent undercover in London and on a mission to save the city from biological terrorism.

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Emmy Awards: OJ: Made in America composer Gary Lionelli


by Jennifer Walden

The aftermath of a tragic event plays out in front of the eyes of the nation. OJ Simpson, wanted for the gruesome murder of his wife and her friend, fails to turn himself in to the authorities. News helicopters follow the police chase that pursues Simpson back to his residence where they plan to take him into custody. Decades later, three-time Emmy-winning composer Gary Lionelli is presented with the opportunity to score that iconic Bronco chase.

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Editor William Hoy — working on VFX-heavy War for the Planet of the Apes


by Mel Lambert

For William Hoy, ACE, story and character come first. He also likes to use visual effects “to help achieve that idea.” This veteran film editor points to director Zack Snyder’s VFX-heavy I, Robot, director Matt Reeves’ 2014 version of Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and his new installment, War for the Planet of the Apes, as “excellent examples of this tenet.”

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SIGGRAPH Update: Our Video Coverage – Edition Two


 

 

postPerspective TV shot interviews at our booth and around the show floor at SIGGRAPH 2017, all in an effort to deliver the show to those who couldn’t make the trip to LA and to make sure people at the show didn’t miss anything.

We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent. This is the second of two video newsletters from SIGGRAPH.

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SIGGRAPH Update: Our Video Coverage – Edition One


 

At SIGGRAPH 2017, postPerspective TV shot interviews at our booth and around the show floor, all in an effort to deliver SIGGRAPH to those who couldn’t make the trip to LA and to make sure people at the show didn’t miss anything.

We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent.

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Richard King talks sound design for Dunkirk


by Mel Lambert

Currently garnering critical acclaim for its stunning and immersive soundtrack — particularly the IMAX showcase screenings — writer/director Christopher Nolan’s latest film follows the fate of nearly 400,000 allied soldiers who were marooned on the beaches of Dunkirk, and the extraordinary plans to rescue them using small ships from nearby English seaports. Although, sadly, more than 68,000 soldiers were captured or killed during the Battle of Dunkirk and the subsequent retreat, more than 300,000 were rescued over a nine-day period in May 1940. A Warner Bros. release, Dunkirk stars Fionn Whitehead, Mark Rylance, Cillian Murphy, Tom Hardy and Kenneth Branagh. (An uncredited Michael Caine is the voice heard during various radio communications.)

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The A-List: Atomic Blonde director David Leitch


by Iain Blair

Before becoming a director known for his hyper-kinetic, immersive, stunt-driven style, David Leitch spent over a decade in the stunt business and doubled actors, including Matt Damon and Brad Pitt, on such films as Bourne Ultimatum, Fight Club and Mr. & Mrs. Smith. Leitch — a martial artist by trade who co-owns action design and production company 87Eleven Action Design — was also a fight choreographer, stunt coordinator and 2nd unit director on many films, including Wolverine, Anchorman 2, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Captain America: Civil War and Jurassic World. Leitch brought all that experience to the table for his directorial debut, the 2014 Keanu Reeves hit John Wick, which he co-directed with Chad Stahelski, his partner in 87Eleven Action Design.

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The sounds of Spider-Man: Homecoming


by Jennifer Walden

Spider-Man: Homecoming casts Tom Holland as Spider-Man, a role he first played in Marvel Studios’ Captain America: Civil War. Homecoming supervising sound editors/sound designers Steven Ticknor and Eric A. Norris — from Sony Pictures Post Production Services — both brought Spidey experience to the film. Ticknor was a sound designer on Spider-Man and Norris was supervising sound editor/sound designer on The Amazing Spider-Man 2. With experiences from two different versions of Spider-Man, Ticknor and Norris provided a well-rounded knowledge of the superhero’s sound history for Homecoming.

 

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Barry Sonnenfeld on Netflix’s A Series of Unfortunate Events


by Iain Blair

Barry Sonnenfeld, whose dark comedies include the Men in Black and The Addams Family franchises, learned from the modern masters of black comedy, the Coen brothers, beginning his career as their DP on Blood Simple and then shooting Raising Arizona and Miller’s Crossing. He continued his comedy training as the DP on such films as Big, Throw Momma from the Train and When Harry Met Sally. It was just a matter of time before he gravitated toward helming the new Netflix show A Series of Unfortunate Events, based on the beloved and best-selling “Lemony Snicket” children’s series by Daniel Handler.

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Baby Driver editors sync cuts to music


by Mel Lambert

Writer/director Edgar Wright’s latest outing is a major departure from his normal offering of dark comedies. Unlike his Three Flavours Cornetto film trilogy — Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz and The World’s End — and Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, TriStar Pictures’ Baby Driver has been best described as a romantic musical disguised as a car-chase thriller. Wright’s regular pair of London-based picture editors, Paul Machliss, ACE, and Jonathan Amos, ACE, also brought a special brand of magic to the production.

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Confessions of a crime-porn editor


 

Over the years I’ve edited many things — drama, comedy, reality, newsmagazine shows — and I’ve earned six Emmys as a result. But lately I’ve been concentrating on the popular true-crime genre often referred to cynically as “crime porn.” For this piece, I debated using my byline, but opted against it for fear of loss of work. I felt telling the story was important though, so here I am. Working in a medium that is predominantly escapist, I edit for drama, emotion and impact… taking liberties with reality and accuracy to provide as much bang for the buck to the viewer (and networks I work for) that I can muster.

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Chatting with The Beguiled director Sofia Coppola


by Iain Blair

Sofia Coppola may belong to one of Hollywood’s most successful movie dynasties, but she’s always marched to the beat of her own drum. After making her acting debut in her dad’s iconic Godfather trilogy, and appearing in a number of his other films, Sofia gradually moved into writing and directing. She made her directorial debut with the 1999 feature The Virgin Suicides, which earned her an MTV Movie Award for Best New Filmmaker and marked her first collaboration with Kirsten Dunst. Her latest film is The Beguiled, an atmospheric thriller that won its writer/director the Best Director award at Cannes recently.

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Paris Can Wait director Eleanor Coppola


by Iain Blair

While Eleanor Coppola, the matriarch of the clan and Francis’ wife, has long been recognized as a multi-talented artist in her own right thanks to her acclaimed documentaries and books — at the age of 81 — that she’s written, produced and directed her first feature, Paris Can Wait. It stars Oscar-nominee Diane Lane as a woman who unexpectedly takes a trip through France, which reawakens her sense of self and her joie de vivre. Long married to an inattentive movie producer (Alec Baldwin), she finds herself taking a car trip from Cannes to Paris with a garrulous business associate of her husband.

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Sound — Wonder Woman’s superpower


by Jennifer Walden

When director Patty Jenkins first met with supervising sound editor James Mather to discuss Wonder Woman, they had a chat about the physical effects of low-frequency sound energy on the human body, and how it could be used to manipulate an audience. “The military spent a long time investigating sound cannons that could fire frequencies at groups of people and debilitate them,” explains Mather. Jenkins was fascinated by the idea of sound playing a physical role as well as a narrative one, and that direction informed all of Mather’s sound editorial choices for Wonder Woman. “I was amazed by Patty’s intent, from the very beginning, to veer away from very high-end sounds. She did not want to have those featured heavily in the film. She didn’t want too much top-end sonically,” says Mather, who handled sound editorial at his Soundbyte Studios in West London.

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The long, strange trip of Amir Bar-Lev’s new Dead doc


 

Deadheads take note — Long Strange Trip, director Amir Bar-Lev’s four-hour documentary on rock’s original jam band, the Grateful Dead, is now available for viewing. While the film had a theatrical release in New York and LA in May, the doc is now on Amazon Video as a six-episode series. Encompassing the band’s rise and decades-long career, the film, executive produced by Martin Scorsese, was itself 14 years in the making. That included three months of final post at Technicolor PostWorks New York, where colorist Jack Lewars and online editor Keith Jenson worked with Bar-Lev to finalize the film’s form and look.

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David Michôd on directing Brad Pitt’s War Machine


by Iain Blair

Aussie writer/director David Michôd first burst onto the scene with his 2010 feature film debut Animal Kingdom, a gritty crime drama. His new film, War Machine, stars Brad Pitt as Glen McMahon, a successful, charismatic four-star general who leaps in like a rock star to command coalition forces in Afghanistan, only to be taken down by the quagmire of war, his own hubris and a journalist’s no-holds-barred expose.

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Creating the sounds of science for Bill Nye: Science Guy


by Iain Blair

Bill Nye, the science hero of a generation of school children, has expanded his role in the science community over the years. His transformation from TV scientist to CEO of The Planetary Society (the world’s largest non-profit space advocacy group) is the subject of Bill Nye: Science Guy — a documentary directed by David Alvarado and Jason Sussberg. The doc premiered in the US at the SXSW Film Festival and had its international premiere at the Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival in Toronto.

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The A-List: Director Ron Howard discusses National Geo’s Genius


by Iain Blair

Ron Howard has done it all in Hollywood. The former child star of The Andy Griffith Show and Happy Days not only successfully made the tricky transition to adult actor, but went on to establish himself as an Oscar-winning director and producer (A Beautiful Mind). He is also one of Hollywood’s most beloved and commercially successful and versatile helmers. Howard “always wanted to direct” and notes that “producing gives you control.” In 1986, he co-founded Imagine Entertainment with Brian Grazer. His latest project is the new Genius series for National Geographic.

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Saturday Night Fever director John Badham looks back 40 years


by Iain Blair

Forty years after John Badham’s Saturday Night Fever was released, the film about a Brooklyn kid with no prospects who lives for Saturday night continues to resonate, and Badham worked with Paramount in 2016 to restore the film in 4K using the original negative and update the surround sound mix to further enhance the soundtrack. During this process he also added scenes to the theatrical R-rated version that round out character and plot.

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NAB 2017 Video Update – Final Edition


 

At NAB 2017, postPerspective TV shot interviews at our booth and around the show floor, all in an effort to deliver the NAB Show to those who couldn’t make the trip to Las Vegas and help catch-up those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all. We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent. This is the third and final video newsletter you will receive from us, but if you’d like to see more videos now, please click here to see our full archive!

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NAB 2017 Video Update – Edition Two


 

We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent.

At NAB 2017, postPerspective TV shot interviews at our booth and around the show floor, all in an effort to deliver the NAB Show to those who couldn’t make the trip to Las Vegas and help catch-up those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all.

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The A-List: Veteran director Walter Hill


by Iain Blair

Over the course of his career, writer, director and producer Walter Hill has done it all. His career began in the early 1970s with screenplay credits for The Getaway and The Drowning Pool. In 1975, he made his directorial debut with Hard Times, a Depression-era street fighting drama. He has also written two graphic novels, the second of which served as the basis for his new film, The Assignment. The neo-noir, pulpy thriller tells the story of hitman Frank Kitchen, who after being double-crossed is surgically altered and now has the body of a woman (Michelle Rodriguez). Seeking vengeance, Frank heads for a showdown with the surgeon (Sigourney Weaver) who transformed him.

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NAB 2017 Video Update – Edition One


 

At NAB 2017, postPerspective TV shot interviews at our booth and around the show floor, all in an effort to deliver the NAB Show to those who couldn’t make the trip to Las Vegas and help catch-up those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all.

We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent.

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Sue Federman: A chat with the Emmy-winning editor of Man With a Plan


by Dayna McCallum

The art of sitcom editing is overly enjoyed and underappreciated. While millions of people literally laugh out loud every day enjoying their favorite situation comedies, few give credit to the maestro behind the scenes, the sitcom editor. Sue Federman is one of the best in the business. Her work on the comedy How I Met Your Mother earned three Emmy wins and six nominations. Now the editor of CBS’ new series, Man With A Plan, Federman is working with comedy legends Matt LeBlanc and James Burrows to create another classic sitcom.

 

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Lone Scherfig on directing Their Finest


by Iain Blair

Writer/director Lone Scherfig is that rarest of creatives — a respected and prolific female director whose films have been both critically acclaimed and commercially successful. Even more amazingly, the Danish-born Scherfig has managed to do that after making the tricky transition from her native tongue to English. Her 2009 coming-of-age drama An Education won the Audience Award at Sundance and was nominated for three Oscars and eight BAFTAs. Scherfig has since directed another three English-language films: One Day (2011), The Riot Club (2014) and her latest film, Their Finest, which recently screened at the London Film Festival and Sundance Film Festival.

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A conversation with editor Hughes Winborne, ACE


by Chris Visser

In the world of feature film editing, Hughes Winborne, ACE, has done it all. From cutting indie features (1996’s Sling Blade) to CG-heavy action blockbusters (2014’s Guardians of the Galaxy) to winning an Oscar (2005’s Crash), Winborne has run the proverbial gamut of impactful storytelling through editing. His most recent film, the multiple-Oscar-nominated Fences, was an adaptation of the seminal August Wilson play. Denzel Washington, who starred alongside Viola Davis (who won an Oscar for her role), directed the film.

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An interview with Scorsese editor Thelma Schoonmaker


by Iain Blair

Thelma Schoonmaker and Martin Scorsese go together like Lennon and McCartney, or Ben and Jerry. It’s hard to imagine one without the other. Simply put, Schoonmaker has been Martin Scorsese’s go-to editor and key collaborator over the course of 23 films and half a century, winning Oscars for Raging Bull, The Aviator and The Departed. Now 77, she also recently received a career achievement award at the American Cinema Editors’ 67th Eddie Awards.

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Director Danny Boyle on the making of T2 Trainspotting


by Iain Blair

It’s been 21 years since Danny Boyle’s Trainspotting stuck a heroin-fueled needle into the jaded veins of pop culture, electrifying audiences everywhere with its terrifying fever-dream tale of Edinburgh junkies. Let’s not forget the shocking and provocative imagery — visions of dead babies on the ceiling and the scene of Ewan McGregor slipping down a toilet. Now Boyle is back with a worthy sequel, T2 Trainspotting, along with the original cast of angry young men now facing mid-life crises — Renton (McGregor, who’s still running to the amped up track of the first film’s “Lust for Life” by Iggy Pop), Spud (Ewen Bremner), Begbie (Robert Carlyle) and “Sick Boy” Simon (Jonny Lee Miller).

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Sponsored: On the Road With Elton John — Worry-free onset transfers


 

Data from the shoot location to the edit suite, and with every transfer you run the risk of losing data, especially in the mad dash to prepare a camera card for reuse. That’s why it’s so important to have simple backups with known data integrity at every stage of the process and for every post department involved. Producer/editor and Elton John crew member Chris Sobchack knows this scenario well.

For him, having guaranteed, checksum-verified data backups is a non-negotiable part of the job. Sobchack uses ShotPut Pro, Imagine Products’ offloading application, while working on tour with Elton John and on personal projects at Wraptastic Productions, the production house he co-owns with his wife, Nicole.

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Kong: Skull Island director Jordan Vogt-Roberts


by Iain Blair

Plucky explorers! Exotic locations! A giant ape! It can only mean one thing: King Kong is back… again. This time, the new Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures’ Kong: Skull Island re-imagines the origin of the mythic Kong in an original adventure from director Jordan Vogt-Roberts (The Kings of Summer). With an all-star cast that includes Tom Hiddleston, Samuel L. Jackson, Oscar-winner Brie Larson, John Goodman and John C. Reilly, it follows a diverse team of explorers as they venture deep into an uncharted island in the Pacific — as beautiful as it is treacherous — unaware that they’re crossing into the domain of the mythic Kong.

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The A-List: La La Land’s Oscar-winning DP Linus Sandgren


by Iain Blair

Even though it didn’t actually win the Best Picture Oscar, La La Land was honored with five Academy Awards this year, including one for Best Cinematography for Linus Sandgren. This Swedish DP, known for his kinetic work with David O. Russell on American Hustle and Joy, collaborated closely with La La Land’s Oscar-winning director Damien Chazelle. Shooting with anamorphic lenses and 35mm film on Panavision Millennium XL2s (with one 16mm sequence) — and capturing his first musical — Sandgren rose to the challenge set by Chazelle (“make it look magical rather than realistic”) by continually pushing the film’s technical and creative boundaries.

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Lost in Time game show embraces ‘Interactive Mixed Reality’


by Daniel Restuccio

The Future Group — which has partnered with Fremantle Media, Ross Video and Epic Games — have created a new super-agile entertainment platform that blends linear television and game technology into a hybrid format called “Interactive Mixed Reality.” The brainchild of Bård Anders Kasin, this innovative content deployment medium generated a storm of industry buzz at NAB 2016, and their first production Lost in Time — a weekly primetime game show — is scheduled to air this month (March) on Norwegian television.

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The sound of La La Land


by Jennifer Walden

Director/writer Damien Chazelle’s musical La La Land has landed an incredible 14 Oscar nominations — in addition to many other award wins from around the globe. The story follows aspiring actress Mia (Emma Stone) who meets the struggling pianist Sebastian (Ryan Gosling) at a dinner club, where he’s been fired from his gig playing tunes for indifferent diners. Mia throws out a compliment as Sebastian approaches, but he just breezes right past, ignoring her completely. Their paths cross again at a Los Angeles pool party, and this time Mia makes a lasting impression on Sebastian. They eventually fall in love, but their life together is complicated by the realities of making their own dreams happen.

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postPerspective Extra: Visual Storytelling With Color-Rich Detail


 

For independent film and video producer Donny Hall, color is a vital part of his story, from capture all the way through to post. Because Hall started his career in post, editing music videos, he realized early on how essential color accuracy is to the foundation of his visual storytelling. Now the owner of Studio82 in Bryan, Texas, Hall has expanded his services to include directing. Whether he’s working on a commercial, corporate video or documentary, his workflow demands the highest level of color-rich detail possible — ensuring each piece is translated exactly as he imagined.

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The A-List: Lego Batman Movie director Chris McKay


by Iain Blair

Three years ago, The Lego Movie became an “everything is awesome” monster hit that cleverly avoided the pitfalls of feeling like a corporate branding exercise thanks to the deft touch of the director/writer/animator/producer team of Phil Lord and Christopher Miller. Now busy working on a Han Solo spinoff movie, they handed over the directing reins on the follow-up, The Lego Batman Movie, to Chris McKay, who served as animation director and editor on the first one.

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The A-List: Oscar-nominated Asghar Farhadi of The Salesman


by Iain Blair

Iranian writer and director Asghar Farhadi burst onto the international film scene with his 2011 film A Separation, which won both the Golden Globe and Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film. The movie also earned Farhadi an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Screenplay.   Farhadi’s latest film, The Salesman, is another low-key, intimate and suspenseful drama that starts off innocently enough, but which slowly peels away layer upon layer of a relationship to reveal the shifting internal struggle beneath.

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Fantastic Beasts VFX workflow employs previs and postvis


by Daniel Restuccio

Warner Bros’ Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is considered by some a Harry Potter prequel and by others an entirely new J.K. Rowling franchise. Filled with nearly 1,500 VFX shots, this live-action, CG and character-driven movie put a huge emphasis on prepro and established the increased role of postvis in the film’s visual effects post pipeline. For the film’s overall visual effects supervisors, Tim Burke and Christian Manz, it was a family reunion of sorts, reteaming with many of the companies and individuals that worked on the Harry Potter movies, including director David Yates and producers David Heyman, Steve Kloves, J.K. Rowling and Lionel Wigram.

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La La Land’s Oscar-nominated director Damien Chazelle


by Iain Blair

Writer/director Damien Chazelle may only have three feature films on his short resume, but the 32-year-old is already viewed by Hollywood as an acclaimed auteur and major talent. His latest film, the musical La La Land, is a follow-up to his 2014 release Whiplash. That film received five Oscar nods and three wins, including Best Supporting Actor. Now officially crowned as this year’s Oscar frontrunner, La La Land just scored a total of 14 nominations (including Best Director), matching the record held by All About Eve and Titanic.

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The A-List: Hidden Figures director Ted Melfi


by Iain Blair

When writer/producer/director Ted Melfi (St. Vincent) first came across the true story behind his new film, Hidden Figures, he was amazed that it had never been told before. The drama recounts the history of an elite team of black female mathematicians at NASA who helped win the all-out space race against the Soviet Union and, at the same time, brought issues of race, equal rights, sexism and opportunity to the surface of 1960s society.

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The A-List: Jim Jarmusch talks about his latest film Paterson


by Iain Blair

Over the past few decades, writer/director Jim Jarmusch has followed the beat of his own drum and built up a body of idiosyncratic films that include Permanent Vacation, Stranger Than Paradise, Down by Law, Mystery Train, Night on Earth, Dead Man, Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai, Coffee and Cigarettes, Broken Flowers, The Limits of Control and Gimme Danger.  His new film, Paterson, fits firmly in that tradition. Paterson is a bus driver in the city of Paterson, New Jersey. He is also a poet. Each day he adheres to a simple routine that informs his poetry — observing the world around him.

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The A-List: Manchester by the Sea director Kenneth Lonergan


by Iain Blair

It’s been 16 years since filmmaker and playwright Kenneth Lonergan made his prize-winning debut at Sundance with You Can Count on Me, which he wrote and directed. The film won
the Sundance Grand Jury Prize and was an Academy Award and Golden Globe nominee for Best Screenplay.  Lonergan’s most recent film is also garnering award attention. Directed by one of the most distinctive writing talents on the American indie scene today, Manchester by the Sea fulfills that earlier promise and extends Lonergan’s artistic vision.

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The A-List: Lion director Garth Davis


by Iain Blair

The plot of Lion, the new awards-buzzy Weinstein film, sounds like an over-the-top, completely made-up Hollywood tearjerker — a five-year-old Indian boy named Saroo (Sunny Pawar) wanders onto a train, falls asleep and wakes up thousands of miles away from his home and family. Frightened, he ends up in chaotic Kolkata. Somehow he survives living on the streets, escaping all sorts of terrors and close calls, before ending up in an orphanage.

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Sponsored: Why RED Studios Hollywood Calls on the G-RACK 12


 

RED Studios Hollywood boasts a long history of riding the cutting edge in commercial video. Today, under the growing umbrella of camera pioneer RED Digital Cinema, RED Studios Hollywood keeps advancing video production in every way possible. Whether that means finding new ways to apply RED camera technology or improving the workflow between those cameras and final video consumption, every step involves the integration of storage. RED’s post production team at RED Studios Hollywood manages to stay deceptively small. The group is composed of about half a dozen editors working almost exclusively within Adobe Premiere Pro, Avid Media Composer and Apple’s Final Cut Pro X, with the bulk of its content arriving in 4K+ R3D RAW file formats.

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The A-List: Collateral Beauty director David Frankel


by Iain Blair

Oscar-winner David Frankel is probably best known for his successful films The Devil Wears Prada and Marley & Me, but the writer/director has an eclectic slate of films under his belt, including The Big Year, Hope Springs and One Chance. His new film, Collateral Beauty, is a drama about a successful New York advertising executive who suffers a great tragedy and retreats from life. While his concerned friends try desperately to reconnect with him, he seeks answers from the universe by writing letters to Love, Time and Death. But it’s not until his notes bring unexpected personal responses that he begins to understand how these constants interlock in a life fully lived, and how even the deepest loss can reveal moments of meaning and beauty.

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postPerspective Update: VR Special Edition


 

Virtual reality is seemingly everywhere, especially this holiday season. Just one look at your favorite electronics store’s website and you will find VR headsets from the inexpensive, to the affordable, to the “if I win the lottery” ones.

While there are many companies popping up to service all aspects of VR/AR/360 production, for the most part traditional post and production companies are starting to add these services to their menu, learning best practices as they go.

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Paramount Pictures

The A-List: A conversation with Arrival director Denis Villenueve


by Iain Blair

Dark and super-intense dramas are the specialty of acclaimed French-Canadian filmmaker Denis Villenueve. It was his explosive 2015 hit Sicario — about an idealistic FBI agent (Emily Blunt) whose hunt for justice thrusts her into the lawless US/Mexican border where drugs, terror, illegal immigration and corruption challenge her moral compass — that put him on Hollywood’s radar. The film received three Academy Award nominations, including Best Achievement in Cinematography (Roger Deakins) and Best Achievement in Sound Editing (Alan Robert Murray) and paved the way for his latest film, the sci-fi drama Arrival.

 

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The A-List: Jackie and Neruda director Pablo Larraín


by Iain Blair

Chilean director Pablo Larraín has been hailed as one of the most ambitious, iconoclastic, daring political filmmakers of his generation. His films include No, a drama about the 1988 plebiscite that brought an end to the Pinochet era; Tony Manero, about a man obsessed with John Travolta’s character from Saturday Night Fever; and The Club, a drama about disgraced priests. He’s also one of the hardest-working directors in the business, with two major releases out before Christmas. First up is Fox’s Jackie, followed by Neruda.

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Taking DJI’s Phantom 4 drone for a ride


by Brady Betzel

I’ve been trying to get my hands on a professional drone to review for a few years now. My wife even got me a drone from a local store that was a ton of fun to play with but hard to master.  For years, I’ve been working on television shows that use drone footage and capture incredible imagery, but it always seemed out of reach for me as an editor. Finally, after much persistence (or pestering, depending on who you ask), DJI agreed to send me the Phantom 4 to test out, and boy is it awesome!

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The A-List: James L. Brooks on his latest film The Edge of Seventeen


by Iain Blair

James L. Brooks, the writer/director/producer, probably has a reinforced mantelpiece in his home. If not, he could likely use one. He is a three-time Academy Award winner and 20-time Emmy Award-winner whose films include Broadcast News, Terms of Endearment, As Good As It Gets and Jerry Maguire. Brooks, who began his career as a writer, produced television hits such as Taxi, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Rhoda, Lou Grant and The Simpsons. He produced his newest film, The Edge of Seventeen, for writer and first-time director Kelly Fremon Craig.

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The A-List: Bleed for This director Ben Younger


by Iain Blair

Writer/director Ben Younger had been MIA for quite a while. Back in 2000 he made a splash with his feature debut, Boiler Room. This tense crime drama was set in the high stakes world of brokerage firms and investment banking. Five years later he directed his second film, the Meryl Streep/Uma Thurman romantic dramedy Prime, which grossed $67 million worldwide. Then Younger disappeared from sight. Over a decade later, he’s back with his third film, Bleed for This, a super-intense boxing drama and the true comeback story of Vinny Pazienza.

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The sound of fighting in Jack Reacher: Never Go Back


by Jennifer Walden

Tom Cruise is one tough dude, and not just on the big screen. Cruise, who seems to be aging very gracefully, famously likes to do his own stunts, to the dismay of film studio execs. Cruise’s most recent tough guy turn is in the sequel to 2014’s Jack Reacher. Jack Reacher: Never Go Back. Supervising sound editor Mark P. Stoeckinger, based at Formosa, has worked on many Cruise films, including both Jack Reachers, Mission: Impossible II and III, The Last Samurai and he helped out on Edge of Tomorrow.

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The A-List: Chatting with Moonlight director Barry Jenkins


by Iain Blair

Moonlight may only be Barry Jenkins’ second film — his first was the 2008 low-budget debut Medicine for Melancholy — but he’s already established himself as a filmmaker to watch. Written and directed by Jenkins, Moonlight chronicles the life of a young black man from childhood to adulthood as he struggles to find his place in the world while growing up in a rough neighborhood of Miami.

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The A-List — Director Ed Zwick talks Jack Reacher: Never Go Back


by Iain Blair

Director, screenwriter and producer Ed Zwick got his start in television as co-creator of the Emmy Award-winning series Thirtysomething. His feature film career kicked off when he directed About Last Night. Zwick went on to direct the Academy Award-winning films Glory and Legends of the Fall.  He also produced the Oscar-nominated I Am Sam, as well asTraffic and won an Oscar as a producer of 1999’s Best Picture, Shakespeare in Love. His latest film, Jack Reacher: Never Go Back, reunites him with his The Last Samurai star Tom Cruise.

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The A-List: Director Terrence Malick’s team behind Voyage of Time


by Iain Blair

A new Terrence Malick film is always a cinematic event, and his latest, Voyage of Time, doesn’t disappoint. Thought provoking and visually transcendent, it’s nothing less than a celebration of life and the grand history of the cosmos. A journey that spans the eons from the Big Bang to the dinosaur age to our present human world and beyond.  A labor of love, several decades in the making, it also represents Malick’s first foray into documentary storytelling and will be released in two formats: Voyage of Time: Life’s Journey, the 90-minute version narrated by Cate Blanchett, and Voyage of Time: The IMAX Experience, a 45-minute version narrated by Brad Pitt.

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Sponsored: Dialogue Mixing for Reality TV


by Jennifer Walden

“Dialogue is my forte,” says Christopher Koch, CAS, re-recording mixer/supervising sound editor at PostWorks NY, who has cleaned, edited, and mixed some of the most challenging dialogue imaginable: the dialogue on reality TV series. What makes it so challenging is that the run-and-gun filming style is combined with a mad dash, day and a half post sound schedule. With no possibility of ADR, it’s do or die with the dialogue captured on location — whether that location is a busy street, a noisy kitchen or a quiet interior. “I strive to match all dialogue to the quality of the studio interviews. I use that as my baseline or benchmark for how the rest of the show is going to sound,” says Koch, who is currently mixing reality series like Chopped on Food Network, Black Ink Crew: Chicago on VH1, and Say Yes to the Dress on TLC.

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Deepwater Horizon’s immersive mix via Twenty Four Seven Sound


by Jennifer Walden

The Peter Berg-directed filmDeepwater Horizon, in theaters now, opens on a black screen with recorded testimony from real-life Deepwater Horizon crew member Mike Williams recounting his experience of the disastrous oil spill that began April 20, 2010 in the Gulf of Mexico. This documentary-style realism moves into a wide, underwater immersive soundscape. The transition sets the music and sound design tone for the entire film,” explains Eric Hoehn, re-recording mixer at Twenty Four Seven Sound. “We intentionally developed the immersive mixes to drop the viewer into this world physically, mentally and sonically.”

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The A-List: The Girl on the Train director Tate Taylor


by Iain Blair

Tate Taylor had just one small comedy — 2008’s Pretty Ugly People — on his directing resume when that part of his career got turbo-charged thanks to his 2011 Oscar-winner The Help, which he also co-wrote and co-produced. Next he tackled Get On Up, the biopic of James Brown, the Godfather of Soul.  Now, for his fourth feature, Taylor has plunged even deeper into the murky depths of twisted human behavior in the highly anticipated mystery-thriller The Girl on the Train, based on the bestseller by Paula Hawkins, the Universal release explores obsession, revenge, sex, lying, desire, pain and addiction.

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Our IBC Video Coverage: Edition Two


 

postPerspective TV traveled to IBC 2016 to shoot interviews from the show floor. So for those of you who couldn’t make the trip to Amsterdam or weren’t able to see everything at the show, we are here to help you catch up.

This is the second of two video newsletters we sent out, but if you’d like to see more videos now, please click here to see our archive!

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Creating new worlds for Amazon’s The Man in the High Castle


by Randi Altman

What if Germany and Japan had won World War II? What would the world look like? That is the premise of Philip K. Dick’s 1963 novel and Amazon’s series, The Man in the High Castle, which is currently gearing up for its second season premiere later in the year. The Man in the High Castle features familiar landmarks with unfamiliar touches. For example, New York City’s Times Square has its typical billboards, but sprinkled in are giant swastika banners, images of Hitler and a bizarro American flag, whose blue stripes have been replaced with yet another swastika.

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Our IBC Video Coverage: Edition One


 

postPerspective TV traveled to IBC 2016 to shoot interviews from the show floor. So for those of you who couldn’t make the trip to Amsterdam or weren’t able to see everything at the show, we are here to help you catch up. This is the first of two video newsletters you will receive from us, but if you’d like to see more videos now, please click here to see our archive!

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IBC: Surrounded by sound


by Simon Ray

came to the 2016 IBC Show in Amsterdam at the start of a period of consolidation at Goldcrest in London. We had just gone through three years of expansion, upgrading, building and installing. Our flagship Dolby Atmos sound mixing theatre finished its first feature,Jason Bourne, and the DI department recently upgraded to offer 4K and HDR. I didn’t have a particular area to research at the show, but there were two things that struck me almost immediately on arrival: the lack of drones and the abundance of VR headsets.

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The A-List: ‘Hell or High Water’ director David Mackenzie


by Iain Blair

Over the course of nine films, acclaimed Scottish director David Mackenzie has managed to pull off quite a trick, by appearing to embrace genre filmmaking while simultaneously subverting the whole concept. His last film, Starred Up, was both a brutal prison drama and a story about anger therapy. Young Adam was both an erotic thriller and a tragic love story. Perfect Sense was a sci-fi romance. His latest genre mash-up, Hell or High Water, might look like a standard-issue, nail-biting bank-heist thriller, but it’s also a lyrical western, a road movie, and a timely commentary on current political and economic issues in America.

 

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Emmy-nominated composer Chris Bacon on ‘Bates Motel’


by Jennifer Walden

The creators of A&E’s Bates Motel series have proven that it is possible to successfully rework a classic film for the small screen. The series is a contemporary prequel to Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho. Understandably, when the words “contemporary” and “prequel” are combined, it may induce a cringe or two, as LA-based composer Chris Bacon admits. “But then I heard who was involved — writers/producers Carlton Cuse and Kerry Ehrin. I’m a huge fan of their work on Lost and Friday Night Lights, so the idea sounded much more appealing. I went from feeling like ‘this is a terrible idea’ to ‘how do I get involved in this!’”

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‘Suicide Squad’: Imageworks VFX supervisor Mark Breakspear


by Randi Altman

In Warner Bros.’ Suicide Squad, a band of captured super-villains are released from prison by the government and tasked with working together to fight a common enemy, the evil Joker.  This film, which held top box office honors for weeks, has a bit of everything: comic book antiheroes, super powers, epic battles and redemption. It also features a ton of visual effects work that was supervised by Sony Imageworks’ Mark Breakspear, who worked closely with production supervisor Jerome Chen and director David Ayer (see our interview with Ayer).

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Creating VR audio workflows for ‘Mars 2030’ and beyond By Jennifer Walden


by Jennifer Walden

Let’s say you want to shoot a short VR film. You’ve got a solid script, a cast of known actors, you’ve got a 360-degree camera and a pretty good idea of how to use it, but what about the sound? The camera has a built-in mic, but will that be enough coverage? Should the cast be mic’d as they would be for a traditional production? How will the production sound be handled in post?

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The A-List: ‘Suicide Squad’ director David Ayer


by Iain Blair

With his distinctive, anarchic, immersive style, director/ producer/screenwriter David Ayer has always excelled at probing the murky depths of human behavior and blurring the lines between the bad guys and the good guys in such hardcore films as Training Day, Fury, Sabotage, Harsh Timesand End of Watch. Now Ayer, whose credits include Street Kings, and the screenplays for U-571, The Fast and the Furious, Dark Blue and S.W.A.T., has made Suicide Squad, a blockbuster without the usual bluster, and a superhero movie without the usual heroes.

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SIGGRAPH Video Coverage: Edition Two


 

At SIGGRAPH 2016, postPerspective TV shot interviews at our booth and around the show floor, all in an effort to deliver SIGGRAPH to those who couldn’t make the trip to Anaheim and to help catch-up those who were at the show but couldn’t see everything. This is the second of two video newsletters you will receive from us, but if you’d like to see more videos now, please click here to see our full archive!

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SIGGRAPH 2016 Video Update – Day One


 

At SIGGRAPH 2016, postPerspective TV shot interviews at our booth and around the show floor, all in an effort to deliver SIGGRAPH to those who couldn’t make the trip to Anaheim and to help catch-up those who were at the show but couldn’t see everything. This is the first of two video newsletters you will receive from us in the coming days, but if you’d like to see more videos now, please click here to see our full archive!

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The A-List: ‘The Little Prince’ director Mark Osborne


by Iain Blair

Two-time Academy Award-nominated director Mark Osborne has been telling stories with animation and live-action for more than 25 years. His breakout film was the 2008 animated DreamWorks offeringKung Fu Panda — co-directed by John Stevenson. Osborne’s live-action directing credits include the independent feature film Dropping Out, the animated TV series Spongebob Squarepants, featuring Patchy the Pirate, and all of the live-action sequences forThe Spongebob Squarepants Movie.

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The sound of sensory overload for Cinemax’s ‘Outcast’


by Jennifer Walden

As a cockroach crawls along the wall, each move is watched intensely by a boy whose white knuckles grip the headboard of his bed. His shallow breaths stop just before he head-butts the cockroach and sucks its bloody remains off the wall.  That is the fantastic opening scene of Robert Kirkman’s latest series, Outcast, airing now on Cinemax. Kirkman, writer/executive producer onThe Walking Dead, sets his new horror series in the small town of Rome, West Virginia, where a plague of demonic-like possessions is infecting the residents. Outcast supervising sound editor Benjamin Cook, of 424 Post in Culver City, says the opening of the pilot episode featured some of his favorite moments in terms of sound design.

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Editor Josh Beal on Netflix’s ‘Bloodline’


by Randi Altman

Looks are deceiving, and that familiar saying is at the heart of Netflix’s dramatic seriesBloodline. The show focuses on the Rayburns, a respected family that runs a popular and long-standing beachfront hotel in the Florida Keys.  On the surface, they are pillars of the community and a perfect family, but when you dig below the surface they are a mess — long-standing family secrets, a black sheep with a criminal record, drug use, alcoholism. It’s all there. Josh Beal joined the editing team of Bloodline around Episode 7 of Season 1 as the show’s only LA-based editor.

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Call of the wild — Tarzan’s iconic yell


by Jennifer Walden

For many sound enthusiasts, Tarzan’s iconic yell is the true legend of that story. Was it actually actor Johnny Weissmuller performing the yell? Or was it a product of post sound magic involving an opera singer, a dog, a violin and a hyena played backwards as MGM Studios claims? Whatever the origin, it doesn’t impact how recognizable that yell is, and this fact wasn’t lost on the filmmakers behind the new Warner Bros. movie The Legend of Tarzan. Supervising sound editor/sound designer Glenn Freemantle and sound designer/re-recording mixer Niv Adiri at Sound24 reveal that they went through numerous iterations of the new Tarzan yell.

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Our Storage Edition: Storage Workflows for 4K and Beyond


by Beth Marchant

Once upon a time, an editorial shop was a sneaker-net away from the other islands in the pipeline archipelago. That changed when the last phases of the digital revolution set many traditional editorial facilities into swift expansion mode to include more post services under one roof. The consolidating business environment in the post industry of the past several years then brought more of those expanded,  overlapping divisions together. That’s a lot for any network to handle, let alone one containing some of the highest quality and most data-dense sound and pictures being created today.

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The A-List: Director David Yates on the VFX-heavy Tarzan


by Iain Blair

Filmmaking is a notoriously slow, labor-intensive business, and most directors would be thrilled if they could get a major movie made and released every couple of years. And then there’s David Yates, who has two mega-productions — each featuring tons of moving parts and cutting-edge VFX — out in the next five months alone. First up is the Warner Bros. action-adventure film The Legend of Tarzan, starring Alexander Skarsgård as the Lord of the Apes, along with Margot Robbie as Jane.

 

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Netflix’s ‘Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt’ gets crisper look via UHD


 

Having compiled seven Emmy Award nominations in its debut season, Netflix’s Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt returned in mid-April with 13 new episodes in a form that is, quite literally, bigger and better. The sitcom, from co-creators Tina Fey and Robert Carlock, features the ever-cheerful and ever-hopeful Kimmy Schmidt, whose spirit refuses to be broken, even after being held captive during her formative years. This season the series has boosted its delivery format from standard HD to the crisper, clearer, more detailed look of Ultra High Definition (UHD).

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Kabir Akhtar on editing The CW series ‘Crazy Ex-Girlfriend’


by Randi Altman

When Kabir Akhtar, ACE, who cut season one of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, got the itch to start editing, he didn’t even know that what he was doing was actually editing… he was just having some fun. In high school, Akhtar would use his computer, multiple tape decks and stereos to record and mix different songs, creating mash-ups, remixes and even musical voicemail messages. An editor was born!

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The A-List — ‘Independence Day: Resurgence’ director Roland Emmerich


by Iain Blair

After two decades of rumors and speculation, German director /writer/producer
Roland Emmerich is finally back with Independence Day: Resurgence. This is the long-awaited sequel to his seminal 1996 alien invasion epic Independence Day, one of the most financially successful movies in the history of Hollywood — it ended up making over $817 million worldwide and turning Will Smith into a superstar. Following that smash, Emmerich went on to make other apocalyptic mega-productions, including Godzilla (the 1998 version), The Day After Tomorrow, 10,000 BC and 2012, all of which were huge box office hits despite little love from the critics.

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VR Audio: Crytek goes to new heights for VR game ‘The Climb’


by Jennifer Walden

Dealing with locomotion, such as walking and especially running, is a challenge for VR content developers — but what hasn’t been a challenge in creating VR content? Climbing, on the other hand, has proved to be a simple, yet interesting, locomotion that independent game developer Crytek found to be sustainable for the duration of a full-length game. Crytek, known for the Crysisgame series, recently released their first VR game title, The Climb, a rock climbing adventure exclusively for the Oculus Rift.

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Company 3’s Heydar Adel: The role of today’s online editor


 

Workflows for episodic TV have changed a lot over the last several years, sometimes daily. A role that has gone largely underappreciated in the process is online editor. Senior online editor Heydar Adel is no stranger to the process, having served in that role for over 17 years. While he has only been with Deluxe’s Company 3 in Santa Monica since last year, he is no stranger to Deluxe itself — he held a similar role at the company’s Encore facility for seven years prior to this recent move.

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Keeping score for ‘Better Call Saul’


by Jennifer Walden

When AMC’s Breaking Bad ended, many went through withdrawal from the multi-
Emmy Award-winning show. Thanks to its prequel, Better Call Saul, the world that Vince Gilligan created in the New Mexico desert lives on. But while the landscapes might seem familiar, don’t expect the show to look or sound the same as Breaking Bad. “For me, it all starts with the black and white keys,” says Los Angeles-based composer Dave Porter, whose score for AMC’s Better Call Saul is anything but black and white emotionally.

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The A-List: ‘Maggie’s Plan’ director Rebecca Miller


by Iain Blair

Rebecca Miller is a rara avis in the industry: a female director and screenwriter in what is still essentially a boy’s club. She has written and directed five films, including Sundance Film Festival winners Personal Velocity,Angela, The Ballad of Jack and Rose and The Private Lives of Pippa Lee. She also happens to be daughter of legendary playwright Arthur Miller, and wife of Oscar-winner Daniel Day-Lewis (whose knighthood also entitles her to be referred to as Lady Day-Lewis). Her latest, a romantic comedy titled Maggie’s Plan, starring Greta Gerwig and Ethan Hawke.

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Editing an ‘Empire’ for Fox


by Ellen Wixted

As a child, editor Zack Arnold and his brother shot short films with a VHS camcorder. Before long, he was using two VCRs to re-mix existing movies. After studying film at the University of Michigan, he moved to LA, where he landed a job editing trailers. That led to work on indie features, and then episodic TV. Editing Burn Notice was a breakthrough moment, and the experience opened other doors. Arnold worked with showrunner Ilene Chaiken on a medical drama that was cancelled, but the partnership was solid, so when she was named an executive producer on Fox’s Empire, Arnold was brought on board as well.

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The A-List: Director Tom Tykwer on A Hologram for the King


by Iain Blair

Tom Tykwer, the multi-faceted German director/writer/composer/producer, first burst onto the international scene with his 1998 thriller Run Lola Run. Since then he’s directed such diverse films as Heaven,Perfume: The Story of a Murderer, The Princess and the Warrior, Cloud Atlas (with the Wachowskis) and The International. His latest is A Hologram for the King from Roadside Attractions. Based on Dave Eggers’ novel, A Hologram for the King is set in recession-ravaged 2010. It stars Tom Hanks.

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NAB 2016 Videos Interviews: Edition 3


 

At NAB 2016, postPerspective TV shot interviews at our booth and around the show floor, all in an effort to deliver the NAB Show to those who couldn’t make the trip to Las Vegas and help catch-up those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all.

We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent.

This is the third of three video newsletters you will receive from us, but if you’d like to see more videos now, please click here to see our full archive!

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NAB 2016 Videos Interviews: Edition 2


 

At NAB 2016, postPerspective TV shot interviews at our booth and around the show floor, all in an effort to deliver the NAB Show to those who couldn’t make the trip to Las Vegas and help catch-up those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all. We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent. This is the second of three video newsletters you will receive from us in the coming days, but if you’d like to see more videos now, please click here to see our full archive.

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NAB 2016 Videos Interviews: Edition 1


 

At NAB 2016, postPerspective TV shot interviews at our booth and around the show floor, all in an effort to deliver the NAB Show to those who couldn’t make the trip to Las Vegas and help catch-up those who were at the show but couldn’t see it all. We hope you enjoy our extensive coverage of new technology, upcoming products and industry trends. It will be time well spent. This is the first of three video newsletters you will receive from us in the coming days, but if you’d like to see more videos now, please click here to see our full archive!

 

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John Schneider’s Louisiana studio: 58 acres, edit suites and more


by Randi Altman

Long before he ever stepped into Hazzard County or behind the wheel of the General Lee, John Schneider was a kid from Mount Kisco, New York, who was making movies with a Super 8 camera and cutting them the old-fashioned way — with razors and tape. And while he loved acting, starting in theater at the age of eight, the art of filmmaking was his real passion. I recently spoke to Schneider as he sat in an edit suite at his John Schneider Studios (JSS) in Louisiana, which is equidistant between the Baton Rouge and New Orleans airports. JSS offers 58 acres to shoot on, with such varied locations as a river, a lake, a swamp, a baseball field, an Olympic-size swimming pool and five acres of Southeast Asia-like bamboo forest.

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NAB: My pick for this year’s gamechanger is Lytro light field camera


by Isaac Spedding

There has been a lot of buzz around what the gamechanger was at this year’s NAB show. What was released that will really change the way we all work? I was present for the conference session where an eloquent Jon Karafin, head of Light Field Video, explained that Lytro has created a camera system that essentially captures every aspect of your shot and allows you to recreate it in any way, at any position you want, using light field technology.

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The A-List: ‘Miles Ahead’ director and lead actor Don Cheadle


by Iain Blair

he multi-faceted Don Cheadle has starred in some 80 movies, both big (Avengers: Age of Ultron, theOcean’s and Iron Manfranchises) and small (Hotel Rwanda), and produced various TV shows and films. Now he can add director to his resume, thanks to his passion project and labor of love, Miles Ahead, a wild —  and wildly entertaining — free-form biopic of jazz legend Miles Davis. Cheadle not only co-wrote, produced and directed the film, he also stars as the raspy-voiced pioneering musician whose improvisational approach and ambitious forays into rock-jazz fusion helped define modern jazz.

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Actor and Film Vet Sharlto Copley Circles Back to Roots With Dell and Adobe


by Beth Marchant

Popular South African actor Sharlto Copley, best known as Wikus van de Merwe in the critically acclaimed hit District 9, has had an unusual career arc. As a late-blooming actor he’s played otherworldly everymen (Neill Blomkamp’s District 9 and Chappie), a villain (Elysium), a howling mad special ops mercenary (The A-Team) and a superhero-turned-LAPD detective in the first original series from Sony PlayStation (Powers). He was hardly waiting tables before that.

An early adopter in every sense of the word, Copley’s been experimenting with new technology since he first acted in and cobbled together his own short comic skits and action sequences using two Betamax VCRs as a kid.

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Playing in a sonic sandbox for ‘Batman v Superman’


by Jennifer Walden

If you’re looking to see a deep, intellectual movie, you might want to skip Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. But if it’s action you are after, buy your ticket and enjoy the ride. Directed by Zack Snyder — who has helmed 300, Dawn of the DeadWatchmen, Sucker Punch and Man of Steel — this film tries to answer the age-old question asked on playgrounds and in bars worldwide: “Who would win in a fight? Batman or Superman?”

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The A-List: ‘Midnight Special’ director Jeff Nichols


by Iain Blair

The acclaimed indie auteur Jeff Nichols made his debut in 2007 with Shotgun Stories, a revenge tale full of menace and foreboding. He followed that up with 2011’s Take Shelter, another dark tale that danced around themes of love, madness and the apocalypse. Then came 2012’s Mud, a coming-of-age story starring Matthew McConaughey as a fugitive. Now, after those three ultra-low-budget films, the writer/director has upped the ante with an ambitious new film, the smart sci-fi thriller Midnight Special.

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Rockin’ music supervision for HBO’s ‘Vinyl’


by Jennifer Walden

Otis Redding, The Velvet Underground, The Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, The Temptations, Janis Joplin, The Doors… the list of music featured on the HBO seriesVinyl would make any music supervisor drool, and that’s just a small sample of the artists whose music has been featured so far. As you can imagine, big-name artists come with a big price tag. “When you have this many songs from the golden era of rock ‘n’ roll, you’re going to spend some real money. It’s such a music-driven enterprise that you have to go into it with your eyes open,” says veteran music supervisor Randall Poster.

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Director Stephen Frears on Lance Armstrong film, ‘The Program’


by Iain Blair

At first glance, the long film career of acclaimed British director Stephen Frears might look a little schizophrenic. He’s made big Hollywood studio pictures and high-profile films with big stars, such asThe Queen (his second Oscar nom), Mary Reilly,Hero, The Grifters (his first Oscar nom) and Dangerous Liaisons. But he’s probably better known for such smaller, grittier, non-star vehicles as My Beautiful Laundrette, The Snapper and The Van, films that provide a rich palette for Frears to explore stories with a strong social and political conscience.

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‘Late Night with Seth Meyers’ associate director/lead editor Dan Dome


by Randi Altman

You could say that editing runs through Dan Dome’s veins. Dome, associate director of post at Late Night with Seth Meyers, started in the business in 1994 when he took a job as a tape operator at National Video Industries (NVI) in New York. Dome grew up around post — his dad, Art, was a linear videotape editor at NVI, working on Shop Rite spots and programming for a variety of other clients. Dome loved to go in and watch his dad work. “I saw that there were a lot of machines and I knew he put videos together, but I was completely clueless to what the real process was.”

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