Inside Ron Frankel’s Wonderful Virtual World of Feature Film Visualization
We actually just finished a job where we did onset visualization for a sequence that we never prevised. We simply created the background. We created the asset and the environment, because the production needed help essentially visualizing where they were in the world. It wasn’t a particularly high-res asset. It certainly wasn’t a photo-realistic asset. But it was an accurate enough asset that the DP could look at it. It was a location that they couldn’t scout. The story behind it was that it was meant to be a practical shoot. And fairly late in the game, at the last minute, for a variety of reasons, it became impractical to shoot there. So, they had to move to a greenscreen. But there had never been a scout of the location. The cinematographer had never really gone there and blocked out the sequence. So, what we did, we brought the location to the director and the filmmaker onset.
So you are seeing more of that kind of work, where the previs was onset visualization. What comes out of that onset work is an HD comp of the action taking place in the background that was recorded by the onset video assist and went straight to editorial. So, now, is it postvis? Well, it was recorded on set. But now they have a temp comp that they can use while the director is editing the sequence together.
You are going to see a continued blurring of all these lines between the traditional pre-production, production, and post-production. You are going to see more continuity and uniformity in the visualization. So, as a visualization company, Proof is essentially trying to position itself as a creative service for clients that can stick with them from these earliest days of development all the way through essentially the final days of delivery. At the same time, you are seeing productions go all international. Production is taking place all over the world. So, we have also established ourselves as an international company with operations in Vancouver, Sydney, London and our home office in Los Angeles. A lot of the shows start in LA, they might go shoot somewhere else and they come back to LA to post, they might stay in Canada or in London to post. So, essentially what we are trying to do is really be a creative resource for our clients at every stage of the production and at every physical place they can go.
Dan Sarto is editor-in-chief and publisher of Animation World Network.