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Re: A Major Motion Picture in HDV

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David Roth Weiss
Re: A Major Motion Picture in HDV
on Apr 17, 2009 at 6:40:28 pm

[Asmund Voll Tesdal] "how does the cost of extra time spent grading less-than-ideal footage compare to the savings of renting cheaper cams?

While there are actually many cases that can be made for using less expensive cameras in a whole host of different situations, you bring up an interesting point Asmund. In my 30-plus years in the business, one of the mistakes I've seen over and over again, is what I refer to as "spending a dollar to save a dime."

On average, post-production costs typically represent sixty-five percent or more of most budgets (that means essentially two-thirds of the average budget is spent in post), and everyone knows this, yet you'll see producers constantly creating new and unnecessary work for their post-production departments, which they somehow think saves time and money.

The classic example that we hear about on the FCP Forum several times every day, is the producer who saves money in camera rentals by shooting their multi-cam project with three different cameras, at different frame rates, and with different pixel dimensions. Great!!! You just saved a few hundred bucks on cameras, but it's now going to cost you many thousands of extra dollars and many hundreds of extra man-hours in post to finish a project that will also most likely never be as good as it could have been if all cameras had matched.

The bottom line is, as I wrote in an article for Creative Cow Magazine a couple of years ago, "as technology takes us farther and farther, delivering cheaper, faster and better increasingly requires working smarter." The problem is, people think films are made with equipment and technology, and they forget to use that powerful computer that's positioned between their own two ears.


David Roth Weiss
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles


A forum host of Creative COW's Apple Final Cut Pro, Business & Marketing, and Indie Film & Documentary forums.

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