Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Overseas Collaboration

I'm currently in Europe, and most of my film contacts are back Stateside in Los Angeles. And we're also wrapping up production on two commercials which were shot here in Europe, and are being edited, scored, and colored Stateside.

And the whole time, as the director, I'm working all but side-by-side with the producer, the talent, the colorist, and the editor, even if they're many time zones away.

Here's an example. Just this evening we had to re-record the voiceover for a spot we shot in Paris. The original VO was lost on a wiped card. If this were footage, it would have been a disaster. And since the talent flew back stateside with the producer and DP late last year, it could easily have been a disaster five years ago.

The Parisian shoot in question

But not today! We set up a miniature recording studio in the actress' kitchen, and over Skype, I coached her as she recorded the lines.

DP (and now sound recordist!) Boa Simon set up a poor man's sound booth:

Not a beat was missed. Once it was recorded, it was sent to me to QC, and then sent straight to the editor. I might as well have been in the same room.

Directors and producers of the new generation would do well to consider the potential of our newfound instant connectivity. It's not as necessary as it once was to actually physically move to LA in order to get projects done. Collaboration can now instantly cover thousands of miles, and the previous hubs of production could well disappear.

The future of production is coming! Or it might be here. Grab it!