Netflix

A lot going on at Netflix for the indie filmmaker and distribution...

Businessweek Article

Hollywood Reporter

Deepstructure Blog

From Deepstructure...

listen to ted sarandos, netflix's chief content officer in charge of all dvd purchases and overseer of an $100 million annual budget:

"eventually we'll be coming to sundance and saying, 'we can buy everything.' there's a deal for every film."


damn. that's quite a statement. but it gets better. netflix ceo, reed hastings wants to take things one step further:

...(hastings) also outlines a scenario that outstrips sarandos' lofty vision of acquiring every picture that plays at sundance. "about 3000 films are submitted; only 100 or so get in," hastings says. ultimately, netflix wants to be able to pick and choose from the 3000 submissions, he explains, and maybe even allow moviemakers to circumvent the festivals altogether.

I guess I'll have to at least enter Sundance then. :)

-Blake

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Several Cool Things...

First, we continue to make good progress on the finishing touches for "Killing Down".

This past weekend we got the sound mixed up to just over the 1 hour mark. Not bad. We've got roughly 45 minutes of the movie left to go. And, on the color correction side of things - we have set looks for just about every major scene. Now, we have to go in and cut and paste the looks throughout the film and then tweak the individual shots as needed. I'd say we're roughly half-way done with this.

So, if all goes well I hope to have everything done in about 3 weeks.

On to other things...

I was reading on the CinemaTech blog today several interesting stories about Hollywood: It's future with digital distribution, DVDs and the "star system" (some of the Tom Cruise/Paramount deal aftermath).

Here's a link to the digital distro and DVD story.

The digital distribution stuff is exciting for indies, but I don't think we're really close yet for it to be a viable (or successful) means of distributing content - except for only the most tech geek among us - and I'm talking feature films here by the way.

Why? Well, a lot of reasons. Mainly bandwidth, but also DRM (digital rights management or copyright issues), storage space, and cost. To download a DVD quality version of a movie is going to be around 4 gigs (or so) of data. Even with the fastest connections that going to be an overnight download. And then you have to have the space to store the files. Your averge joe consumer does not have a terabyte's worth of storge like I do. Then the costs are actually fairly expensive - especially when you consider if you bought (or rented) a DVD you'd get all the extras - and most digital downloads I've seen are just the movie. And the last thing for me is who really wants to spend two hours watching a movie on your computer? Unless you're traveling or commuting, this is not the best way.

So until you can download an HD quality (or even DVD quality) movie from the web and then play it on your expensive flat screen TV, digital downloads of feature films won't take off.

Am I saying I'm against digital downloading of movies? Heck no. I'm actually a huge proponent of it. But, I just don't think it will be a "normal" way of renting or buying a movie for several years to come - if not longer. I hope I'm wrong, but I don't think so.

Now on to the "star system" in Hollywood...

It's long been known (and assumed) that a star helps a movie out financially. I don't argue that point. As a matter of fact, I completely agree with it. In my own recent film I purposely sought several regonizable actors just for this reason (among others of course - like they were right for the part).

But there is a very interesting article in the NY Times contradicting the idea of the "star system" - and I must say a lot of it makes sense...

Hollywood, where the star system was invented, is not wholly dependent on celebrities: the list of biggest-grossing movies in history is dominated by movies like “Shrek 2,” “ET: The Extra-Terrestrial” and the “Star Wars” series, which were not star-driven. But the industry still places an enormous importance on superstar power based on a straightforward fact: On average, movies that have big names starring in them make more money at the box office than movies that do not.

“Movies with stars are successful not because of the star, but because the star chooses projects that people tend to like,” said Arthur S. De Vany, a professor emeritus of economics at the University of California, Irvine, who has written extensively about the economics of moviemaking. “It’s a movie that makes a star.”

In other words, while a person will go to a Bruce Springsteen concert because the artist is, indeed, Bruce Springsteen, the success of “The Matrix” had to do with many things other than its star, Keanu Reeves.

“Movie industry executives keep this perception that stardom is a formula for success, but they don’t measure it,” Mr. Eliashberg said. “They resist using analytical methods for all sorts of reasons, from being uncomfortable with numbers to the argument that this is a creative industry and not a business.”

Mr. De Vany and other economists point out that many factors contribute to the success of a movie — like a big budget, having a G or PG rating, opening on a large number of screens and whether it is a sequel, among others.

“Stars help to launch a film. They are meant as signals to create a big opening,” he said. “But they can’t make a film have legs.”

Mr. Ravid, the Rutgers professor, suggests that stars serve as insurance for executives who fear they could be fired for green-lighting a flop. “If they hire Julia Roberts and the film flops, they can say ‘Well, who knew?’ ” said Mr. Ravid.

I really like the line, “It’s a movie that makes a star.” I think that is right - but only for their first big hit. After that, they are the star. Especially if you're a Tom Cruise or George Clooney who basically plays themself in every movie.

In the end, I do honestly believe the story is the movie no matter who is in it. But, the thing is, how many times has someone ask you about a movie that you maybe hadn't heard of and the first thing you say is, "Who's in it?" That statement alone says more than I can about movie stars and their impact on the success of a movie.

Oh, last but not least, there's a nice little article in of all things Popular Mechanics about what Hollywood shoud fear most...

The entertainment industry's real threat isn't piracy, it's backyard Spielbergs armed with digital moviemaking gear.

Again, it's a descent article, but to me the main thing Hollywood should fear is the immense variety of (homemade) digital videos on the web from places like You Tube that are cheap entertainment sources and are distractions (and competition) to spending money and time at the movies.

I really don't necessarily think that Hollywood should be or is afraid of everyone who can buy a camcorder and some cheap editing gear. I mean, should Eric Clapton be afraid of everyone who buys a guitar?

-Blake

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WB Direct-to-DVD

Just found a Yahoo News story about Warner Bros. starting a new division called Warner Premiere that will produce 15 or so movies a year that are Direct-to-DVD instead of for the theatrical market. Sounds interesting that a big player would do this. I mean, this is what everyone else ends up having to do in most cases - we don't necessarily set out to only be on DVD. Funny too, for some reason "Direct-to-DVD" sounds better than just "Direct-to-Video"? Kind of like saying "pre-owned" versus "used" for car sales...

Anyway, here's the scoop...

---------------------------------------------

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Warner Bros. film studio on Monday unveiled a new division to make and distribute movies directly to DVD consumers - a first for the company - and it put a veteran marketing executive in charge of the group.

The new division, called Warner Premiere, annually will produce up to 15 original titles made by well-known filmmakers, starring recognized actors and, in some cases, based on earlier feature films that played in movie houses.

Warner Premiere's first title, for instance, will be "Dukes of Hazzard II," a sequel to last year's film "Dukes of Hazzard" that was a moderate success at box offices. It is expected to be released in Spring 2007, Warner Bros. said in a statement.

Diane Nelson, who previously served as executive vice president of global brand management, has been named president of Warner Premiere. Warner Bros. is a unit of Time Warner Inc.

Other Hollywood film studios, particularly The Walt Disney Co., have built strong businesses making original content for direct-to-video and DVD markets.

In the past, Warner Bros. home entertainment division had released original movies based on animated content such as its Looney Tunes cartoon characters.

The establishment of Warner Premiere marks the first time it has created a new division solely for original, direct-to-DVD production and distribution.

Warner Bros. said select titles from the new group may be distributed to movie theaters and possibly online.

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Here's a link to the original story if you'd like to read it there.

-Blake

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New Project(s)

As I'm finishing "Killing Down" I'm also beginning to develop my next project. I've made minor mentions of this in previous post, but now things are starting to move forward.

The project is a biopic on a famous Texas family (of which we've secured a Life Story option). Can't give away any details just yet, but we are starting the interview process this weekend and from that we will write the script. Tentative plan is to have script finished by the New Year (or shortly thereafter) and shoot in the late spring (2007). Things have a tendency to change though (note the time it's taken to finish "Killing Down") - but we are making good progess.

I actually have another script I'd like to direct too - and it's already written. We'll see what I end up doing first. And, I'm also producing a film for a director friend of mine, so there's a lot going on.

Of course finishing the current film is my top priority now and we're closing in on that...

-Blake

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Distribution Rant

Barry Green from DVXuser.com has a really interesting rant about current and future distribution trends for Hollywood and indies alike...

So, indies dream of the day that theaters will be equipped with digital projectors, when satellites will be beaming content directly to the theaters, and when ticket buyers will be lined up around the block to see their latest opus. Ain't gonna happen. Can't happen. You wouldn't go to the theater now to see a film you haven't heard of, would you? I mean, maybe on a lark a small percentage of you would, but the public in general? No way.

Very, very true. Distribution as a whole is tough even with a movie star.

Click here to read entire article.

-Blake

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Scarier than any Hollywood Horror Movie

Interesting article from the NY Times about problems in Hollywood - but it's more than that - it's problems in moviemaking and marketing period, including indies.

I've copied the entire article here for ease of reading...

--------------------------------------------------

Caught on Film: A Growing Unease in Hollywood

By LAURA M. HOLSON

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 18 — For many here, Stacey Snider was the Hollywood executive who had it all. As chairwoman of Universal Pictures, she hobnobbed with celebrities at the Academy Awards. She was feted at charity events as well as in the fashion pages of Vogue. But after General Electric acquired Universal Pictures in 2004, the bright lights lost their brilliance.

Films like the Peter Jackson “King Kong” were considered disappointments, despite bringing in $547 million at the worldwide box office. And like many of her industry peers facing similar oversight, she regarded the scrutiny of the studio’s quarterly returns as, at times, oppressive. So much so that Ms. Snider quit her job in February to become chief executive of DreamWorks, now a division of Paramount Pictures, to work with the director Steven Spielberg on far fewer projects.

“It’s not like I view this as a private, artistic enterprise,” Ms. Snider, 45, said in a recent telephone interview. Still, she said: “I certainly felt the pressure. I felt the uncertainty. It galvanized the angst. We went from making movies to making product and content. I didn’t want to make franchises. I wanted to make movies.”

Hers is a common refrain in Hollywood these days. Despite a domestic box-office surge after years of declining attendance, 2006 is shaping up to be a time of Hollywood discontent. Studio executives have waged war on actor salaries, as high-profile projects with stars like Jim Carrey have been put off. Movie production deals, like the one Tom Cruise has at Paramount, are being renegotiated. Studios are also making fewer big-budget movies.

But while Hollywood has undergone periodic shifts like this before, many people here agree that there is something different this time, a permanence to Hollywood’s new austerity plan. Executives are facing too many unknowns, among them, changing moviegoer habits, rising costs and the threat of piracy.

“In this Wall Street and corporate world, the discussion has become: What is the proven, unique selling property of this product?” said Warren Beatty, the actor, who is upbeat about the industry’s prospects.

But he, too, agreed the industry was in transition. “The problem is you can’t sell entertainment the way you sell cars or air-conditioners,’’ he said. “Entertainment is dependent, to some extent, on surprise.”

The concern so far seems largely psychological, although many here predict dark days ahead. Movie-making is no longer a growth business, and has lost its luster among investors. Even the most well-run large movie studios often return only 5 percent to 7 percent annually. And other forms of entertainment — the Internet, sports and video games — are fiercely competing for consumers’ attention.

“When you hear what people are afraid of, it’s that movies are not special anymore,” said Terry Press, who runs worldwide marketing at DreamWorks Animation. “It’s the single issue no one wants to think about or say out loud.”

The tipping point, many here agree, was Walt Disney’s announcement last month that it would eliminate 650 jobs in its movie division, fire its production chief and sharply reduce the number of films it makes to a dozen or so a year from as many as 20.

What’s more, the company said it would focus mostly on Disney-branded films like the popular “Pirates of the Caribbean” franchise, which it can exploit across all divisions.

“Where Disney may have sent ripples, it begged the question, Who knows what others will do?” said Leonard Goldberg, the movie producer and former business partner of Aaron Spelling who was known for television shows like “Charlie’s Angels” and “Fantasy Island.”

Slow-growing movie studios are wilting under Wall Street’s demands to deliver a box-office hit like the “X-Men” series or “Pirates” every time out. Executives say the decline in DVD sales, which began in early 2005, is taking a toll on budgets. And to complicate matters, studios have not figured out a money-making digital strategy to deflect piracy while, at the same time, appeasing fickle consumers who want movies online.

“Stress is a function of fear,” said Alan F. Horn, who has been in the movie business three decades and is president of Warner Brothers. While he says he is optimistic about the future, he conceded that running a studio “has never been tougher.”

Warner has had one of its worst summers in years, with disappointments like “Lady in the Water” by M. Night Shyamalan, the big-budget remake of “The Poseidon Adventure” and the animated “Ant Bully.” But even profitable Warner movies are cause for anxiety because Hollywood is quick to label anything a loser that does not meet prerelease expectations.

For example, “Superman Returns” by Warner cost $209 million to make and Mr. Horn predicted it would garner $400 million at the worldwide box office (a respectable sum), which he said ensured a profit after DVD and television sales. But many in Hollywood expected it to bring in at least $500 million given Superman’s popularity and the publicity around the movie’s release. Mr. Horn said, “People are asking, ‘Are you disappointed?’ I don’t know how to relate to that. I don’t know what to say.”

There are few economic indicators that reflect Hollywood’s apparent unease. Art dealers who cater to studio executives, actors and producers said buying had not slowed. Nor have sales of homes that cost $5 million to $10 million, several real estate agents said. And despite layoffs at all the major studios, the number of film and television production jobs has increased.

In the first six months of 2006, 130,000 people were employed in entertainment in Los Angeles, compared with 127,200 in 2005, according to the Los Angeles Economic Development Corporation. That growth is being fueled largely by an explosion in independent film production. Jack Kyser, the group’s chief economist, said 23 of the 30 films being made here in mid-August were from independent production companies.

But those statistics reflect only part of the story.

Robert Shaye, the founder of New Line Cinema, a division of Time Warner that will celebrate its 40th anniversary next year, said a fundamental driver of Hollywood’s unease was the high cost of making and marketing films. (The average in 2005 was $96 million.) Investment funds have poured money into movies, reducing the sting of studio cost-cutting. But investment funds are not immune to losses, either. A newcomer, Legendary Pictures, invested in “Lady in The Water” and “The Ant Bully,” Studios are also under attack from digital pirates who distribute illegal copies online. As a result of the piracy, studio executives can no longer depend on waves of re-releases for steady income. “Once it’s out there, it’s out there,” Mr. Shaye said.

With digital pirates and the pressure from Wall Street to produce predictable profits, the dialogue about what movies are made and marketed was bound to change.

If there is fear among some in Hollywood that brand managers are taking over, it is because two studios recently filled top creative jobs with executives whose expertise is movie marketing. At Disney, Nina Jacobson, the well-respected president of production, was fired and succeeded by Oren Aviv, the marketing chief. Ms. Snider, who joined DreamWorks, was succeeded in March by two executives, including Universal’s top movie marketer, Marc Shmuger.

Tom Staggs, Disney’s chief financial officer, argues that the concerns are unfounded. “The suits aren’t running the studio,” he said. “I think Hollywood has to constantly challenge itself to remain relevant.” Still, he added: “If we let it become a cookie-cutter, brand-flapping exercise, it is not going to work. We have to focus on the creative side.”

Some promising young executives are seeking to pursue creativity outside the studio. Last year, Mary Parent, 39, and Scott Stuber, 37, set in motion an option in their contract that allowed them to quit their jobs as presidents of production at Universal Pictures to become producers. Both said they did not leave the studio because they were unhappy; their producing deal is at Universal. Instead, they wanted the opportunity to flex their creative might before they got too old or started families.

“It reaches a point where it is hard to enjoy it,” said Ms. Parent, reflecting on being a studio executive. “Just the sheer volume of meetings between phone calls. You are trying to cut through the tide. It was grueling. You were at a test screening every night until midnight; you have scripts to read. You don’t want to be that person just scratching the surface.”

Of course, being a producer, particularly a new one, is no less demanding. In the last year, Ms. Parent has made five weeklong trips to New Zealand where she is a producer for the film “Halo.” Mr. Stuber has spent much of the summer in Arizona on the set of “The Kingdom,” where temperatures have spiked to as much as 110 degrees. “It’s not like it’s less busy,” Mr. Stuber said. “But you get to spend three hours in an editing room if you want to. You can’t lose sight of the fact that the job is to entertain.”

Whatever the challenges ahead, Mr. Goldberg, the producer, said Hollywood would adapt as it did when silent movies became talkies, and three decades ago, when the VCR was perceived as a threat.

He had no sympathy for those who do nothing but complain. “Let them get a real job,” he said. “They get paid a lot. They go to great parties. They fly around in jets, not only for business reasons, but for personal things, too. I think there are worse jobs to have.”

-----------------------------------------

I've said this before... why do I want to work in this business?

-Blake

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Busy Weekend

It's Sunday night. I spent this weekend focused on finishing "Killing Down" (of course I've spent the last 8 months trying to do this too). :)

Saturday we did the final mix on the first 30 minutes of the movie. It sounds reallly, really good (thanks Roy!). We plan on hopefully mixing another night this week and then again next Saturday as well.

Today I worked on the color correction. We got about 6 hours worth of time in on the DaVinci 2K. We're having to work on weekends and off hours since our budget is a fraction of what they normally charge for an HD tape-to-tape gig like this. It's all good though. We're making great progess and the movie is looking excellent (thanks Peggy!). It's amazing what high-end color correction can do for a film. This is of course taken for granted on a Hollywood production or a larger scale indie - but I'd wager the vast majority of smaller indies simply "color correct" in the Avid or Final Cut Pro. Sure, you can even things out and shift some colors around - but you can not come close to what you can do in a true color correction suite. It just makes a film drip with production value, which is a very, very good thing.

I have to admit that I am kind of frustrated at the time everything has taken. Of course a lot of this has been out of my control - as they say, "beggars can't be choosers" and since I'm getting several deals on the work being done it's hard to demand things speed up...

I know I've said this before, but I really hope we can have this thing wrapped up by the first week in September. Believe me, I'm ready.

-Blake

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Bruno Kirby 1949-2006

A great actor Bruno Kirby died 3 days ago. Not sure how widely reported this was... but he was one of my favorite character actors with great roles as Billy Crystal's best friend in "When Harry Met Sally" and "City Slickers". He also played a gangster in "The Godfather II", had a very funny role in "This Is Spinal Tap", among many other great performances (including a recent stint on the current HBO hit "Entourage").

I highly suggest going back and watching "City Slickers" and "This Is Spinal Tap". These were both great roles and he created very interesting characters. You might be saying to yourself, "I don't really remember him in "Spinal Tap"? And if you do recall him, you're thinking he was only in the film for a few minutes? All I can say is watch the extras on the DVD. He plays the limo driver that picks up the group at the airport with a sign that says "Spinal Pap". But on the DVD extras his characeter goes up and parties with them in the hotel. It's some funny, funny stuff.

Anyway, it's sad news to report, but I'm glad he gave us many great performances to remember him by.

-Blake

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Making Progress

Started the new-new final-final color correction today on "Killing Down". Things are going pretty smoothly so far... got a lot done today (and will continue this week).

Only issue was the color correction box is having a problem reading the EDL. For some reason it has offset things by 3 frames and is adding random edit points for dissolves, etc. This is not a major thing thank goodness, although we do want the EDL to work properly in the end.

We were able to set up various looks and save them, but many of the in and out points are off - of course they can be inserted by hand if need be, but that is a lot of work - especially on a film that has around 1500 edits! One of the engineers is supposed to take a look at the list tomorrow and hopefully get this matter resolved. If not, I may need to export a new EDL.

A side note... as I'm finishing this movie I'm working on my next projects as well. I have several things in development and I'm trying to decide what to do next. I'm likely going to embark on a biopic that I recently acquired the Life Story rights to - but there is no script yet for this, so it will be a little while. I do have a dark comedy heist film script ready to go and I'm considering shooting this first, but again, I'm just not sure. And, I actually have a short film I'd like to do - yep, a short film. I've had this idea for a while and have been considering pursuing it. Of course there's no real market for shorts (from a financial point of view), but I like to keep the creative juices flowing.

So a lot going on. But priority numero uno right now is FINISHING "KILLING DOWN". :)

-Blake

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Sunday

This Sunday we're starting up with our new Plan B color correction for "Killing Down" at Video Post & Transfer. I can't wait to get going on this... and get finished!

Time is ticking away and due to issues out of my control the final completed movie is taking a lot longer than hoped. In the end though we should have a really kick-ass looking movie. :)

I'll update the progress as it happens...

-Blake

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Director Jon Keeyes

A fellow Texas filmmaker Jon Keeyes is directing a new film in North Carolina (starring Dominique Swain) and he's doing a great job documenting his experience via his blog. I highly suggest reading it.

The new film is going back to the genre that got him started... horror. I think he has a really good grasp of that genre and I look forward to seeing the end result. I also look forward to seeing his last film "Living & Dying" (and action/thriller starring Michael Madsen and Edward Furlong) which is supposed to be released either late this year or early next here in the States.

It's great to see a good guy like Jon have success - and it's also great to see a TEXAS filmmaker have success. :) Anyway, definitely check out his blog.

-Blake

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Tech Talk

To be successful as an indie filmmaker I believe you need to be both a creative person and a technically-minded one.

Can you be successful without knowing the technical side of things? Sure. Are you limiting yourself to being very dependent on others if you don't understand this stuff? Absolutely.

This is one reason I really like Robert Rodriguez. He has honed both his creative abilities and his technical filmmaking craft to very high levels (like his films or not).

Now understand of course, I'm not saying you should not collaborate with others who have expertise in certain areas. I absolutely think you should. Ever heard "jack of all trades, but master of none"? What I am saying is you should have at minimum a good understanding of all the technical aspects of making a film.

What format do you want to shoot on? 35mm? HDCAM? DVCPRO HD? HDV? DV? Do you know the strengths and weaknesses of each? How are you going to edit? Avid? Final Cut Pro? Adobe Premiere? Do you have an understanding of how non-linear editing works? How are you planning to distribute your final movie? A film print? An HD master? DVD? HD-DVD? Blu-Ray? What is the best solution for you and ultimately your audience?

These are really pretty general questions. Again, I'm not saying every filmmaker needs to understand the engineering aspects of high-def tape stock or an Avid editing system. I'm just saying please, please, please do some research and get a good general understanding of the process and how it will affect your project.

I consider myself to be a very technically-minded person (and pretty creative too). But notwithstanding, I have had some recent technical problems with the final color correction on "Killing Down". So it can and will happen to everyone - just try and prepare yourself the best you can. I personally read just about every industry magazine out there like Post Magazine, Millimeter, DV Magazine, High Def, Filmmaker, Indie Slate, Videography, etc - and I constantly read industry blogs like HDforIndies, DV Guru and many, many others.

These days technology changes extremely fast and so it's a good idea to stay on top of it. Just today I read a great story from Mike Curtis at HDforIndies about the first footage he's seen (or really anyone has seen) from the new RED Camera. This camera - if it even comes close to its proposed specs - will likely revolutionize ALL filmmaking (from Hollywood to indies and everything in between). Of course this phrase has been said a lot in the last few years, but again, technology has changed a lot too (and actually filmmaking has been revolutionized many times).

As for the new "Plan B" color correction on "Killing Down"... we're doing a very high-end HD tape-to-tape grading on a DaVinci system. So yesterday I had to output the movie from the Avid DS Nitris to D5-HD tape. The post house did not have a D5 machine so we had to rent it and get it shipped from LA. Supposedly there are over 400 D5-HD machines in LA - but there is only one in Dallas and it's at Video Post (where I'm doing the color correction). This was very costly, and I'll have to do it again after the correction to put it back into the Avid DS for subtitling, effects and final credits, etc. I normally don't discuss costs in too much detail, but I feel it's good for other indies to know how expensive this stuff is. The Panasonic D5-HD deck rents for $1700/day. Luckily the post house I'm using gets a discount, so with shipping it was $1400 to rent. Yep, that's a lot of money. Not to mention that the D5 tape stock - the 124 minute length - cost $291 for each tape. I bought two. One to output from the DS and one to color correct to. Again, not cheap.

So why D5-HD? I could have easily scored an HDCAM deck (maybe even gotten it for free as a favor), but I wanted the higher quality format. Here's where some of that technical mumbo jumbo comes in handy...

D5-HD is an uncompressed 10bit format with a 4:2:2 color space. HDCAM is a compressed 8 bit format with a 3:1:1 color space. My online edit in the Avid DS was uncompressed 10 bit 4:2:2, so I did not want to output to HDCAM. D5 was the best choice to retain the quality throughout. And, Video Post has a D5 machine.

So yes, it did cost me more, but in the end I will have a better master format and my technical know how helped me arrive to this conclusion (with the help of several other's input).

Of course now the business-minded side of my brain is saying "what the hell did you just spend that money for?".

But I'm an indie filmmaker, so I don't have any business sense. ;)

-Blake

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Thank You, Thank You, Thank You

If you read my previous post you know we've had an issue with the color correction. We no longer are working with the company in Austin to complete the work. It's a long story, but suffice it to say it didn't work out.

So I have to THANK the great folks at Video Post & Transfer in Dallas, Texas (specifically Peggy) for coming through for me in the 11th hour here. I've used VP&T for all my past color correction work, but wanted to try a new method using a "desktop D.I." - which by the way is the wave of the future - but unfortunately we had issues with the process and the company we tried to use. VP&T is actually getting a Resolve D.I. suite later this year (the super high-end DaVinci version). But, we're going to do an HD tape-to-tape grading which is the best choice for us right now.

Besides this good news, we are days away from doing our final sound mix - and man does it sound great. I have to thank the guys at Dallas Audio Post for all their hard work and dedication to the project. They have gone above and beyond and it will definitely show in the final movie.

-Blake

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Who Am I?

I'm a filmmaker who's produced & directed five feature films including the comedy SPILT MILK (available on iTunes), the new horror/thriller PHOBIA (on iTunes) and the action/thiller KILLING DOWN (which you can buy or rent at pretty much all the usual places).

I also created the Streamy and Webby award-winning web series PINK, which to date has been viewed online around 10 MILLION times at places like YouTube, Hulu, Koldcast and TheWB.com. And speaking of TheWB.com, I also produced and directed an online thriller for them called EXPOSED. It was released summer 2010. And most recently I created a new online sci-fi series called CONTINUUM, which is part of the online indie TV network JTS.tv - Just The Story and NOW available via VOD through indie platform Distrify.

Oh, and I don't shoot weddings. Thanks for asking though.

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