Monday, January 5, 2015

Post Post

By Tom Inglesby

Photo by hyena reality
We sometimes get caught up in the WOW factor in this business. And by “business” I mean yours, film making, and ours, writing about film making. When we see the latest whiz-bang animation or VFX or whatever, we get that “insider” feeling that we are the cool cats who know what is going on and can explain it to the outsiders. But we also are the ones who get a little twinkle in our eyes and a “golly whiz” in our throats when we really don’t know what is going on.

After all, there are so many aspects to the film and video production business that few people even in the business can know it all. That wasn’t the case a few generations ago. The indie filmmaker who did it all—conceptualizing, writing, shooting, cutting, and even release printing his or her work—wasn’t uncommon at some pretty high levels. Some even did the acting, directing, and marketing. This was especially true at the industrial, educational, and documentary levels of the business. Without the deep pockets of the studios, indie producers had to try, if not do, everything.

We’ve come full circle. The current crop of small, high-quality cameras, lights and audio equipment makes it a lot easier for a creative individual to attempt a full-scale assault on the entertainment industry. Fall back: YouTube!

Software and computers are replacing cameras and lights for filming, from animation and special effects to green screen and dubbing. All the editing functions that we used to do with a grease pencil on film are done with a mouse on a desktop.

One thing remains consistent, however: value. The end product, regardless of cost to produce, is valuable to the producer, the crew, and the distributor. Their work is wrapped up in what might be a single hard drive worth of space or a hundred terabytes of online storage. This post post-production requirement is rarely thought of in advance. Hey, archiving isn’t sexy; storage is just another cost center.

And then along comes Sony and the Hackers, a title for a film that no one saw coming, it seems. Where and how you store your work during and throughout the lifecycle of a project can be critical in how you monetize that project. Security is just as important as cost up front and space in the backroom. Best to consider that before you spend all the funding on pretty, new camera gear.