I'm a longtime AE user and video editor, but recently ventured into HD/HDV land and had some questions that I thought I knew the answers to.
I shot 1080 60i HD footage using a 35mm lens adapter with an HDV camera. I transcoded the HDV on capture to ProRes 422. I edited in FCP and had done a few test with the FCP de-interlace filter and the footage looked pretty much like film and looked way better than the raw 'video' look.
I took the footage into AE using Automatic Duck and applied effects and letter box bars, cropping shots, etc. I interpreted fields on import and was rendering out with fields planning to apply the FCP de-interlace filter again - and thus wait for yet another render. Then I got to thinking - was there any benefit to even using the de-interlace filter when I can just render out of AE with no fields?
Is the FCP tool for folks who don't have AE? Is there any benefit to achieving a film look with either option?
AE doesn't really do a great job of deinterlacing without the assistance of frame rate conversion plugins, which are typically pricey... think $500. ReelVision's Twixtor and Magic Bullet can do it, to name two. They work by interpolating the two HD fields to create a new HD frame.
When done properly, the results look better than FCP's deinterlace effect.
And if deinterlace in FCP looks okay to you, heck, just use it once when your AE work is all done, no additional AE Plugin needed.
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA