“That’s a wrap!”
The Cyclops film continues to evolve, now that we have entered post-production, and we’re incorporating our interactive media component. As Producers, post-production increases our responsibilities and consequences. Everyone that we source for The Cyclops film becomes paramount to the development of the final product. The editor, colorist, composer, sound editor, and visual effects designer are all brought into the process. For the iPad, in launching our graphic novel tied to The Cyclops film, we’ve begun to collaborate with our digital designer, and will have our original writer for The Cyclops film pen a script for the comic. An artist and possible second digital designer will create the work needed for our interactive media piece. Putting the various elements together in a timely and coherent package is a great effort.
In post-production, we can now put the pieces together, but it’s not easy. Reaching out to professionals willing to work on a student project with a limited budget is difficult work. Getting the best quality talent in that scenario is also a tough task. Luck is always going to be needed regardless of the stage in development, but a little luck in post goes a long way. As producers, the end results fall on our shoulders. Our post mentor, Scott Watson explained the importance of establishing the post-production team early in the project, rather than after shooting. Important to understand because of the time it takes locating each individual for the specific work required.
In filming The Cyclops, we chose to limit our scope with the visual effects needed in the film. The Cyclops prosthetic headpiece was created in makeup, and the budget only allowed for one to be made. Practical effects and camera tricks were used to do what would have been difficult labor in post. Juan Carlos Mendoza, a graduate from the VFS 3D Animation and Visual Effects program, was onboard early in the project. Having him on set during the shoot was a valuable asset because of the reference work and preparation for the post VFX. With Miguel’s background in post FX and VFX in general, we had a strong liaison communicating between the team of producers and our VFX designer. This assisted our learning curve greatly and helped us understand what Juan’s needs and what workflow would be. Another early asset in our post-production was sourcing a composer, Billy Hepper, to score our film. Luckily, sound editing came from one of our on-set sound mixers. Agatha Fiodorow’s presence on the day we shot The Cyclops would also be helpful in her approach to the sound editing.
Although it took longer, we finally were able to find a great editor, a VFS graduate, Andrew Gust. His previous work with the Red cam only makes his efforts easier with the familiarity that it gives him. Although our VFX designer is taking on the task of doing the color correction on our film, we’re debating sending it in to Technicolor. Such an iconic institution in the film industry, and with the student discount available, there may not be a more advantageous opportunity to have our film color corrected by an industry leader.
In our goal for a film festival prepared short, we’re continuing to manage our scope and goals in post-production as best we can. Pending our final decision on the color correction, we’ve stayed on task in a difficult process that does not always go according to plan. Now with the addition of work consideration for the interactive media component for the iPad, our jobs are far from completion. Staying focused and maintaining a good level of energy will only help us proceed forward with our end results in sight.
Check back for more updates on our progress in the weeks to come.