Thursday, August 29, 2013

STORY’s David Orr Directs a “Game Changer” for Vanderbilt University

Luckie & Company’s new campaign is aimed at redefining the image of the school’s athletic department.

A new commercial campaign for Vanderbilt University’s Athletic Department reimagines a practice field and workout facility as proving grounds for victory.

Artfully directed by STORY’s David Orr for Birmingham agency Luckie & Company, one spot, Limits, presents de-saturated images of football players lifting weights and engaging in drills with words such as “perseverance” and “dedication” woven into the backgrounds. A second spot, Pull, centers on two athletes playing tug of war with a tire as teammates cheer. Accompanying graphics proclaim, “Victory is awarded on Saturday…but it’s earned long before then.”

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

A Common Thread’s Brendan Williams Directs Campaign Launching Rite Aid’s Wellness 65+ Program

Three new spots focus on seniors having fun.

LOS ANGELES—A Common Thread’s Brendan Williams has directed a new campaign for Rite Aid that presents beautifully-crafted portraits of seniors who are healthy and having fun. Three new spots, conceived by Marc USA, promote Rite Aid’s newly-launched Wellness 65+, a first-of-its-kind customer loyalty program for seniors.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Simian Shifts Search into Overdrive

New SmartSearch™ feature generates instant results when users search media libraries.

Laguna Niguel, Calif.— In the latest upgrade to its industry-leading creative workflow and media management platform, Simian has added an advanced, global smart search tool that enables users to get the results ten times faster than ever before. Simian SmartSearch™ includes an auto-complete feature that returns real time results instantly with as few as two keystrokes.

The Colonie Continues to Grow, Adds Editor Keith Kristinat

CHICAGO— The Colonie has added Keith Kristinat to its editorial staff as the boutique, creative post-production studio continues to expand to keep pace with its busy workload. Kristinat arrives from Red Car, Chicago, and brings strong relationships with local advertising agencies and a sparkling reel that includes work for such brands as Nintendo, Kellogg’s, Allstate and American Family Insurance. His first project for The Colonie is a documentary for Nike (via Game Seven Marketing) about its Chi-League summer basketball program.  

The Colonie co-founder Bob Ackerman said that the company’s current docket demanded that they add another editor, and they are especially pleased to bring on Kristinat due to his creative skills, work ethic and established clientele. “Keith is young, talented and driven; he adds depth to the company,” Ackerman says. “We were very impressed with his passion to do great work.”
In tandem with Kristinat’s arrival, The Colonie is planning on adding additional editorial suites and has hired assistant editor Graham Chapman, formerly of Foundation Content. The company earlier expanded its graphics department, hiring motion graphics designer Jennifer Moody and building a new graphics workspace.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Technicolor - PostWorks New York Provides Finishing Services for Indie Comedy "Last Weekend"

Martin Zeichner graded the dark comedy set in Northern California and starring Patricia Clarkson.
NEW YORK—Technicolor – PostWorks New York recently completed final post-production work for Last Weekend, a dark comedy from first-time directors Tom Dolby and Tom Williams. Martin Zeichner applied the final grade to the film, the story of an upscale family’s Labor Day holiday at their estate in Northern California. Zeichner worked under the supervision of Dolby, Williams and cinematographer Paula Huidobro, who captured principal photography with an ARRI Alexa.   Last Weekend stars Patricia Clarkson and Zachary Booth.

Schweet Opens Production Offices at Hollywood Center Studios

Reality TV producer is currently developing series for National Geographic, A&E, Style Network and E!

Hollywood—Schweet Entertainment, a full-service television production company headed by executive producers   Rob Worsoff, Jack Osbourne and Brian Wendel  has opened production offices at historic Hollywood Center Studios. Producers of the hit National Geographic series Alpha Dogs, Schweet is currently developing new series for National Geographic, A&E, the Style Network and E! The company recently produced video for the 2013 World Tour of Black Sabbath.  It earlier produced the theatrical documentary God Bless Ozzy Osbourne.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Technicolor - PostWorks New York Applies the Finishing Touch to Indie Drama "Wish You Well"

Colorist Martin Zeichner helps to capture the atmosphere of 1940s Virginia for coming of age story based on David Baldacci’s bestseller.
NEW YORK— Final post production work for the independent drama Wish You Well was recently completed at Technicolor – PostWorks in New York. Directed by Darnell Martin, the film is based on the best-selling novel by David Baldacci, who also wrote the screenplay. Set in the 1940s, it is the story of a young girl, Lou Cardinal, who goes to live with her great-grandmother in Virginia after her writer father is killed in a car accident. The film stars Josh Lucas, Mackenzie Foy and Academy Award-winner Ellen Burstyn.

Cinematographer Lorenzo Hagerman Chooses Codex for Amat Escalante's Thriller "Heli"

London, UK – Mexican writer/director Amat Escalante won Best Director as this year’s Cannes Film Festival for his new thriller Heli. The film is the eagerly-anticipated follow-up to Escalante’s previous films Sangre and Los Bastardos which similarly drew critical praise (and numerous festival awards) for their unflinching portraits of the lives of ordinary Mexicans. Heli is also one of the first films produced by Mexico’s burgeoning independent film industry to be captured with an ARRIRAW workflow based on ARRI’s Alexa camera and Codex’s Onboard Recorder.

Set in Escalante’s home state of Guanajuato in central Mexico, Heli, which had its world premiere at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, tells a chilling tale steeped in the violence and social disorder of the country’s drug war. The film’s title character is a working-class man, struggling to support his extended family, who becomes unwittingly drawn into the cocaine trade with devastating consequences.

The film was shot by veteran cinematographer Lorenzo Hagerman, whose previous work includes the documentaries Presumed Guilty and Which Way Home, and Hagerman felt that the Codex/ARRIRAW workflow was essential to capturing the rawness and nuance of Escalante’s story.
“As a cinematographer, I always want to capture as much information as I can; it’s a matter of subtlety, the little things that register in the image,” he explains. “When you use compression, slight degradations in light, little changes in color, can get lost. You may have two pixels side by side with slightly different values, but compression records them as the same, round number. You may not immediately see the difference, but you feel it. It’s there.”

Hagerman adds that the proven reliability of the Codex/ARRI Alexa combination was also an important consideration as the cast of Heli was primarily made up of non-pros. He would be shooting considerably more footage than if they were working with experienced actors and he didn’t want to chance equipment failure. “When I work, I want to forget about the gear,” he says. “Photography is not about operating technology; it’s about language. If you’re thinking about your gear, it’s an obstacle. On this shoot, I could let the Codex recorder do its job and focus on doing what I love.”
Hagerman shot Heli almost exclusively with available light. (Some night-time exteriors were shot using only an ordinary 60-watt light bulb for fill.) The cinematographer notes that he has come to prefer working with natural lighting through his documentary work, and insists that it’s part of what gives Heli its visceral feeling of truthfulness and immediacy.

“The light in Mexico is very contrasty,” he observes. “This is not Scandinavia where you have 12 hours of twilight. The light is rushed, harsh, especially in Guanajuato, which is in the mountains. The land is high and the sun is tough.” The Codex/ARRIRAW workflow enabled Hagerman to capture the often barely perceptible variegations in the landscape and the sky, which play important symbolic roles in the film.
Just as important, the CODEX/ARRIRAW workflow translated into greater flexibility in post production. All of the original detail was preserved in the source files and accessible when the film was going through final color grading. Hagerman was particularly pleased with a night exterior that was shot with the dome light of a car and a flashlight. “Initially, the shot looked very dark, but very quickly, we were able to pull out the details and achieve the look we wanted,” he says. “We didn’t have to spend a lot of time on those scenes. When you shoot with compression, you need to do a lot of math and push it a little bit, and that can leave you with annoying artifacts.”
In the end, Hagerman says, Heli was well served by the decision to capture ARRIRAW on Codex. “I was very lucky to work with a production company, Mantarraya Producciones, that was not only concerned with making a film, but with making the best film possible, creatively and technically,” he concludes. “It’s essential to use the best tools, when you want to make a film that will last forever.”

Photos: Mantarraya / Martin Escalante
About Codex
Codex, who are based in London, England, design and manufacture high-performance workflow tools for feature film, television and commercials production. These integrated systems, designed by film-makers for film-makers, manage digitalfiles and images from camera through to post production, visual effects andarchiving and include tools for color, dailies creation, archiving, review and digital asset management. Codex continues to raise the bar for digital production by combining great electronics and industrial design with cutting edge tools.

For more information please visit
Editor’s Note: The product names and registered trademarks mentioned are each the property of their respective owners.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Colorflow Provides Final Post Services for “Facing Fear”

Documentary, about an unlikely friendship between a gay man and a former neo-Nazi, debuted at Outfest Los Angeles.

Berkeley, CA— Colorflow recently provided final post production services for Facing Fear¸ first-time director Jason Cohen’s powerful documentary short about the unlikely friendship between a former neo-Nazi and the gay man he victimized decades earlier. Kent Pritchett performed final color grading for the doc, which recently made its world premiere at Outfest Los Angeles where it won the Audience Award. Facing Fear is scheduled for a theatrical run at the Laemmle Music Hall Theatre in Beverly Hills, August 9th – 15th.

SIM Digital Helps CTV’s “Spun Out” Shift into High Gear

Production and post-production technology specialist creates an innovative, file-based workflow for new multi-camera sitcom.

Los Angeles—SIM Digital recently provided production and post-production equipment, services and support for the debut season of Spun Out, a new multi-camera sit-com from CTV and Project 10 Productions. SIM designed and built a complete file-based workflow for the show that extended from the cameras through final delivery and included such innovative features as real-time delivery of full-resolution camera media from the set to the editorial team.