Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Rising Sun Pictures Offers Course in Compositing for Feature Films

Adelaide, South Australia—Aspiring visual effects artists will have an opportunity to learn the basics of compositing through a new course offered by Rising Sun Pictures. Introduction to Compositing for Feature Films will be taught by RSP Senior Compositor Paul Kirwan, whose more than two dozen film credits include Gravity, The Great Gatsby, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides and The Lord of the Rings Trilogy.

Compositing is a fundamental skill for visual effects artists and the starting point for many visual effects careers. This intensive, 10-week course provides an introduction to Nuke, one of the industry’s most widely used compositing software, and grounding in day-to-day tasks performed by compositing artists with a focus on feature films.

FuseFX Delivers Action-Packed VFX for “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.”

Burbank-based effects studio collects second Emmy nomination for ABC series.

BURBANK— Accolades continue to accumulate for FuseFX and its work on ABC’s Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. The lead visual effects provider for the action series, the team from the Burbank-based studio is currently nominated for an Emmy Award for Outstanding Visual Effects; the second straight year they’ve been so honored. They’ve also tallied three V.E.S. Award nominations and an Online Film & Television Award nomination over the course of the show’s first two seasons.

“FuseFX is by far the best visual effects company working in television,” says Mark Kolpack, VFX Supervisor for ABC Studios, producers of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. “They have the best pipeline and the best talent pool. Their organization and attention to detail is outstanding.”

Filmworkers’ Knack for Developing Talent Continues with Colorists Jeff Altman and Matt Harger

Altman grades eSports documentary, “All Work All Play”; Harger to grade indie feature “Who Gets the Dog?”

CHICAGO—Filmworkers has a tradition for developing post-production talent and now it has two new stars in the making. Young colorists Jeff Altman and Matt Harger are producing standout work, and developing strong followings among local agencies and filmmakers for their enthusiasm, knowledge of digital cameras from the Alexa to the iPhone, and their ability to quickly work with clients to reach desired creative goals.

“Jeff and Matt bring fresh eyes and new ideas and our clients are responding,” says Filmworkers president Reid Brody. Brody adds that the recent arrival of veteran colorist Craig Leffel has also provided a boost. “We’ve built the strongest, most diverse color department in the market.”

All Work All Play

Technicolor PostWorks Helps David Simon Recreate 1980s Yonkers for HBO’s “Show Me a Hero”

NEW YORK—Post-production for Show Me a Hero, the new 6-part drama debuting on HBO this month, recently wrapped up at Technicolor PostWorks New York. The post house handled dailies processing, editorial conforming, final color grading and deliverables. It also provided sound mixing through its PostWorks facility.

From David Simon, whose previous work with HBO includes the acclaimed series Treme and The Wire, and directed by Paul Haggis, Show Me a Hero is set in 1980s Yonkers, New York and centers on conflicts among elected officials, bureaucrats and citizens over federal court ordered construction of low income housing. It stars Oscar Isaac, Winona Ryder, Jim Belushi, Catherine Keener, Alfred Molina, LaTanya Richardson-Jackson and Bob Balaban, among many others.

The challenge for Technicolor PostWorks was to deliver six hours of feature-quality material under tight time constraints. Simon’s insistence on realism and absolute fidelity to the series’ time period also set a high bar.

Friday, August 21, 2015

FuseFX Sets the Bar High in Emmy-Nominated Work for “American Horror Story.”

Burbank-based effects house’s freaky work for hit FX series continues to draw accolades.

BURBANK— American Horror Story is a major hit for FX. The most recent season of the anthology series, Freak Show, became the most-watched show in the network’s history. The show has won the loyalty of fans and kudos from critics for its smart, imaginative storytelling and superb performances from its stellar ensemble cast.

The show also features some of the best visual effects on television. Ranging from photo-real set extensions to CG characters to all manner of blood and gore, they are the work of Burbank-based FuseFX, whose team is currently nominated for an Emmy Award for Outstanding Special Visual Effects in a Supporting Role. Earlier this year, FuseFX won the VES Award for Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Visual Effects-Driven Photoreal/Live Action Broadcast Program.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Chainsaw Provides Post Services for Emmy Nominees

Post Factory, Pixel Underground, Bling Digital and SIM Digital also lend their expertise to nominated series, documentaries and specials.

LOS ANGELES—Chainsaw, A SIM Group company, provided post production services for 11 television productions that received a total of 54 nominations in the 67th Emmy® Awards. 

They include HBO’s Game of Thrones, which led all shows with 24 nominations, including Outstanding Drama Series, as well as nominations in directing, cinematography, editing and sound categories. Chainsaw performed editorial conforming and color grading for the show.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

VFX Exec Jason Dowdeswell Joins FuseFX Vancouver

Former VP of Production at Sony Pictures Imageworks, Vancouver, takes the helm of FuseFX’s Vancouver operation, which is currently producing VFX for shows for Fox, A&E, Syfy and CBS.

BURBANK— FuseFX has hired veteran visual effects supervisor and executive Jason Dowdeswell to lead its facility in Vancouver. Previously Vice President of Production Operations at Sony Pictures Imageworks, Dowdeswell will supervise current production activities and oversee a planned expansion of the FuseFX operation in Vancouver.  Dowdeswell’s background also includes senior posts with Digital Domain, Image Engine and Rainmaker, and credits on such films as Edge of Tomorrow, Immortals and Twilight.

FuseFX  is continuing to focus on visual effects for episodic projects as its primary business and is currently doing work on such shows as Salem (Fox), Backstrom (Fox), The Returned (A&E), The Magician (Syfy), Zoo (CBS) and X-Files (Fox) through its Vancouver facility.  The addition of Jason Dowdeswell adds senior leadership to the company’s initial foothold in Vancouver and lays the foundation for additional growth in both episodic work and potentially features. 

Jason Dowdeswell

DI Producer Colin Davis Joins Post Factory NY

NEW YORK—As part of its ongoing effort to grow its resources for motion picture finishing, Post Factory NY, a SIM Group company, has hired Colin Davis as DI Producer. Davis, who arrives from a similar position with Company 3, New York, will oversee feature film and documentary projects undergoing editorial conforming, color grading and other finishing services. He will also be involved in developing the facility’s workflow procedures and service offering. In his first project for Post Factory NY, Davis oversaw final color grading and deliverables for the upcoming Lionsgate release American Ultra.

Colin Davis

Monday, August 17, 2015

City Hearts: 2015 Fresh Focus Photo Auction to Honor Mary Ellen Mark

A photograph of the late photographer with Marlon Brando on the set of “Apocalypse Now” will be the  key photograph of an auction benefitting the children’s arts charity.

Los Angeles—City Hearts’ 4th Annual Fresh Focus Art Auction, slated for November 1st at The Leica Gallery in West Hollywood, will include a special tribute to the late photographer Mary Ellen Mark. A rare photograph of Mark with actor Marlon Brando on the set of the film Apocalypse Now, shot by Stefani Kong Uhler, will be the key photograph in the event’s auction. Proceeds from Fresh Focus 2015 will benefit City Hearts, a non-profit organization whose mission is to transform the lives of L.A’s most underserved and at-risk children through the arts.
This year, City Hearts’ 4th Annual Fresh Focus Art Auction will be juried and feature the work of a host of fine art and celebrity photographers, including Jeff Bridges, Doug Kirkland, Herb Ritts, George Hurrell, Kim-Gottlieb Walker, Eli Reed, Anthony Friedkin, Julia Dean, Michael Semaan, Nicola Goode and Steve Banks, among many others. High-profile Members of the American Society of Cinematographers such as Richard Crudo, Russell Carpenter, David Darby, James Chressanthis, and Vilmos Zsigmond have donated still photography from their gallery showings.
Mark, who died in May, was one of the most accomplished photographers and photojournalists of her generation. Her work appeared in Life, Rolling Stone, The New Yorker, The New York Times and many other publications, and has been exhibited in galleries and museums worldwide. Her many accolades included three Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Awards and three fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

2G Digital Grows Its Sales Team

BURBANK—2G Digital, a leading independent supplier of digital supply chain services, has made two appointments to its sales team.

Cheryl A. Dorsey, a 20-year veteran of the digital media industry, assumes the post of Director of Business Development. She will work to grow the company’s business in traditional markets, including studios, production companies and distributors. She will also seek to develop emerging markets including cable companies, satellite companies, over-the-top distributors (OTT) and other multiple system operators.

Cheryl A. Dorsey and Julie Rolf

Monday, August 10, 2015

FuseFX Artists Garner Emmy Nominations for “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D” and “American Horror Story”

BURBANK— Artists from FuseFX received two nominations in visual effects categories in the 67th Emmy® Awards.

Visual Effects Supervisor Mark Kolpack, VFX Producer Tracy Takahashi, Compositing Supervisor Kevin Lingenfelser, CG Supervisor Matthew Von Brock, CG Lead Artist Mitch Gates, Lead Compositor Kevin Yuille and VFX Coordinator Briana Aeby are nominated for Outstanding Visual Effects for the Marvel's Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.  episode “The Dirty Half Dozen.” They share the nomination with production Lead VFX Producer Sabrina M. Arnold and Special Effects Supervisor Gary D'Amico.

This is the second straight year that the FuseFX team has received an Emmy nomination for Marvel's Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.  It has received a total of three VES Society Award nominations for its work on the show, including two this year.

Visual Effects Supervisor Jason Piccioni, Visual Effects Producers Jason Spratt and Tim Jacobsen, Compositing Supervisor David Altenau, Lead Compositor Tommy Tran, Lead CG Artist Mike Kirylo and CG Artist Matt Lefferts are nominated for Outstanding Special Visual Effects In A Supporting Role for the American Horror Story episode “Edward Mordrake, Part 2” They share the nomination with production VFX Supervisor Justin Ball and SFX Supervisor Donnie Dean.

FuseFX won a 2015 VES Award for Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Visual Effects-Driven Photoreal/Live Action Broadcast Program for American Horror Story. Its artists also received a nomination for Outstanding Compositing in a Photoreal/Live Action Broadcast Program.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

GPL Technologies to Showcase VFXnow at SIGGRAPH

Hardware as a Service approach allows visual effects companies to quickly and affordably scale infrastructure.

LOS ANGELES—GPL Technologies, a premier provider of technology solutions and managed services to the media and entertainment industry, will showcase agile pipeline solutions for visual effects companies offered by its VFXnow division at SIGGRAPH 2015 in Los Angeles, Booth 206.

VFXnow has developed a unique Hardware as a Service (HaaS) model where visual effects companies lease rather than buy hardware, allowing them to quickly and economically ramp up production pipelines to meet project needs. Workstations, rendering systems and storage capacity can be added without long-term investment costs, and with the support of an experienced, production-minded engineering team.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Celebrating its 80th Anniversary, CARTONI Introduces 4 New Fluid Heads for Lightweight Cameras.

In addition to the popular FOCUS HD, the new range combines perfect counterbalance, durability and lightweight for camera packages up to 22kg (48.50lbs).
ROME—CARTONI, the gold standard in camera support for 80 years, is introducing a new range of FOCUS Fluid Heads specifically designed for today’s smaller, lighter high-performance cameras. The four new dynamic heads, FOCUS 8, FOCUS 12, FOCUS 18 and FOCUS 22, accommodate an array of camera, lens and accessory packages from 0 – 22kg (0 - 48.50lbs). Each includes CARTONI’s, patented counterbalance system for superb performance and each comes with the company’s unsurpassed 5-year warranty.
CARTONI will be introducing the new FOCUS Fluid Heads at IBC 2015, Hall 11, Stand 11.E30.

Technicolor PostWorks Supports TIFF World Premieres

NEW YORK—Technicolor PostWorks New York provided post-production services for four films making their world premieres at next month’s Toronto International Film Festival.


Tuesday, August 4, 2015

“Southpaw”: Sound Artists from Sony Pictures Post Production Services Deliver a Knockout.

CULVER CITY, CALIF.—One of Hollywood’s most gifted action directors, Antoine Fuqua explores the rarified violence of the boxing ring in his latest film Southpaw, released this month by The Weinstein Company. The film traces the rise, fall and redemptive resurrection of Billy Hope (Jake Gyllenhaal), a talented but troubled fighter who grew up an orphan in New York’s Hell’s Kitchen. A boxer himself since his youth in Pittsburgh, Fuqua delivers fight sequences that are both brutal and thrilling. He places the audience directly inside the ring—and sometimes inside Hope’s head—allowing them to experience the action from the perspective of the fighters themselves.

Monday, August 3, 2015

STORY’s Jeff France Explores a Peril of Business Travel in Campaign for IHG

CHICAGO—In a new spot of Intercontinental Hotels Group (IHG), STORY Director Jeff France explores one of the most vexing problems of modern business travel: what to bring home for the kids. Conceived by Seattle agency Possible, the ad promotes IHG’s Travel Rewards program.

Waiting for their mom to return from a business trip, two girls speculate about the goodies she’s bringing. “Act excited,” heaves one. The reason for their lack of enthusiasm rests on a nearby table:  a collection of corny knickknacks. These remnants of past trips express their own curiosity over the new arrival. “What’s it going to be this time?” chirps a ceramic T-Rex.