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FCP Finishing Workflow (2K/4444 Super 16mm Film --> DVD & HDCAM)

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Boris Riabov
FCP Finishing Workflow (2K/4444 Super 16mm Film --> DVD & HDCAM)
on Sep 22, 2012 at 7:49:12 pm

Hello Guys,

I've been reading up several finishing workflows and I wanted to post here to make sure I'm doing everything right (and I do have some questions as well).

Super 16mm --> 2K DPX Files --> Graded In Color --> (2048 x 1200) --> AE Scratch Removal ---> FCP (Widescreen Crop + Resize For 16:9)

I am working in Apple Pro Res 4444. 2048 x 1200 Dimensions.

1. I realized (only after grading everything) that my dimensions for Super 16mm were slightly off. While the lab told me to use 2048 x 1200, the proper dimensions for Super 16mm are 2048 x 1240.

2. I want to crop my footage to 16:9 for both DVD and HDCAM output. I want to letterbox my entire sequence, and because I've reframed/zoomed several shots to adjust for the expected crop, I cannot use the FCP widescreen filters - as they resize themselves if any respective clip is larger on the zoom scale (ex. 100 --> 101.5).

3. What I did was export one (no zoom or resize) frame with the widescreen matte applied to it - as a .psd file.
It was the same size as my sequence (2048 x 1200). I set the resolution to 300dpi.
I erased the background and was left with just the black screen matte bars. I imported the .psd file back to FCP and set it to the length of my timeline.
I dragged it over my sequence and it cropped correctly.

*Would anyone recommend using this method, or are there better ways to do this? I did research widescreen generators, but I felt safer just basing my photoshop matte from the FCP widescreen filter.

A. Should I resize my footage (before going to 16:9) from 2048 x 1200 to 2048 x 1240, simply by adjusting the setting in the Sequence tab? Yes it will stretch slightly, but it will be accurate. I've done it and it looks practically the same, with just slight black bars at the top and bottom.

B. What's the best way to export and maintain the quality when exporting to DVD? I've read compressor stretches your footage to fit the 16:9, but if I will have cropped using the Photoshop matte in FCP, will this have any effect? Or can I crop in Compressor as well?

C. If I am printing to HDCAM tape, are there any specific things I should be aware of? Would it really matter if I print the 2048 x 1200, without readjusting it?

Thank You,

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Boris Riabov
Re: FCP Finishing Workflow (2K/4444 Super 16mm Film --> DVD & HDCAM)
on Sep 22, 2012 at 8:48:53 pm

I think I solved my own problem.

I just dropped the clips in another sequence (1920 x 1080) the 16:9 clip and will reframe each shot slightly.


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Rafael Amador
Re: FCP Finishing Workflow (2K/4444 Super 16mm Film --> DVD & HDCAM)
on Sep 24, 2012 at 9:45:12 am

Hi Boris,
You should have done that on AfterEffects, dropping your composition on a 1920x1080 composition.

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