Avid, Turnovers and Deliverables, Workflow
Feature Turnovers

Feature Turnover Guide

I had written a whole post on turnovers, but quickly found that it went out of date. So here’s my attempt to write a more future-proof guide to getting the materials of your film turned over to all the various departments that editors and assistant editors interact with. This post primarily deals with turnovers to sound, music, and DI/online. There will be another post dealing with VFX. For the TL;DR crowd, see my normal spec…
Avid, Workflow
Star Trek Into Darkness

5.1 Temp Mixing on Star Trek Into Darkness

 in Avid, Workflow
On Star Trek Into Darkness, we wanted to try something new for our sound workflow, and that was to keep a running 5.1 mix in the editors' reels throughout the entire editorial process. During Post on Super 8, J.J. Abrams had mentioned to his Post Supervisor, Ben Rosenblatt, that he wished he could have better sound while editing, and a "temp dub as you go." He wanted to be able to screen the rough cut with…
Avid, Featured, Tips, Tricks and Unnecessarily-Hidden Features, Workflow

Quick and Easy Dialogue Cleanup with RTAS

On Star Trek Into Darkness I had the opportunity to break out of my usual Assistant Editor responsibilities and tackle a new experiment in temp sound editing. Will Files, Matt Evans, Robby Stambler and I formed a new mini-department within Editorial that was tasked with temping out the Editors’ sequences and mixing them in 5.1. There’s a lot to the process that is new and interesting, and I hope to get another post up soon…
Featured, Opinion, Workflow

Thoughts from NAB 2012

So after spending a day and a half on the floor of NAB 2012 (and a fun night at Media Motion Ball!), here are some of the thoughts I had and things I’m excited about after talking to various companies on the exhibition floor. ATTO Technology Thunderbolt-to-10Gb Ethernet (link) I asked the ATTO guys whether anyone had used one of these to connect a laptop or iMac to a Unity, and they said that they…
Avid, Featured, VFX, Workflow
SubCap Featured Image

Automate VFX Sequence Titles

This tip comes by way of George McCarthy, who was our VFX Editor extraordinaire on Mission: Impossible 4. I also created an online EDL to SubCap Converter you can use in lieu of the more manual way described below. If you’re on a show that has to turnover a sequence to a VFX house, you’ll likely find the need to export a Quicktime of that sequence with titles over any shot in the sequence that…
Avid, Backups, Featured, Workflow

Keeping Mobile Avid Media Updated

On most of the films that I’ve worked on, I’ve needed to keep at least two Avid systems up to date. This could be because an editor wants to be able to cut from home, or the Director wants the ability to cut on set. To handle this I wrote a Terminal (bash) script that searches for any new MXF or OMF media on specified volumes since the last time the script was run. On…
Featured, Workflow

Mission: Impossible 4 Formats and Aspect Ratios

In terms of workflow, planning for MI4 was certainly a challenge. If it were just one film format or just one release format there would be nothing special to write here, but from the outset we knew we would be shooting multiple film formats and releasing in three different aspect ratios, and keeping on top of all that takes a little bit of effort. The final film contains imagery shot on six different formats, which…
FCP, Tools, Workflow

Matte Maker

 in FCP, Tools, Workflow
After reading Scott Simmons' article on inserting visual timecode (aka BITC) onto your sequence, I posted a comment about the FCP part of the article suggesting an alternate way to put TC on your sequence without having to nest it. I don't really like nesting, so my method just involves putting the Timecode Generator plugin on the matte I use to display my sequence in its proper 1.85 or 2.40 aspect ratio.
Featured, Workflow
Amazon Cloudfront Header

Experimenting with Streaming on a CDN

Recently I was asked to post a copy of the film I just finished cutting online for a producer in Europe to view. This meant I would need to encode a Flash Video file (FLV) or an H.264 MP4, and I would need to find someplace secure to host it online. On this and previous projects, I’ve often uploaded Quicktimes directly to my website and sent a link and login credentials to whoever needs them.…
FCP, Featured, Workflow
Compressor Droplet (Feature Image)

Use a Droplet to Prep Audio for FCP

So I’ve had a chance to work for a while on FCP, and I have a few things in mind to post on it. First, though, a very simple trick to help with importing properly configured audio into FCP. The Issue FCP, like Avid, prefers uncompressed audio over MP3s, M4As, etc. It’s not that it doesn’t work when you import a MP3 into FCP, it just doesn’t work well. You’ll hear all sorts of clicks…
Featured, Workflow
Screenshot of the Hellboy 2 Avid Project Window

Organizing a Project’s Reels and Versions

The determination of how to organize all of the sequences you’ll create during the course of your project is extremely important, but unfortunately it is also nearly impossible to standardize. I work in features primarily, so while my organizational system is based around reels and suits me just fine, it would need a lot of modification were I to go to episodic or reality TV, commercials, etc. Individual editors also have their preferences for organization…