CO3 Employs Cutting-Edge Technology for 'Prometheus'

Award-winning post house Company 3 provided sophisticated grading and post production services for Twentieth Century Fox's action thriller, “Prometheus.”

Santa Monica, CA -- Award-winning post house Company 3 provided sophisticated grading and post production services for Twentieth Century Fox's action thriller, Prometheus. The 3D science fiction adventure, directed by Ridley Scott, starring Noomi Rapace, Michael Fassbender, Guy Pearce, Idris Elba, Logan Marshall-Green, and Charlize Theron, was finished at Company 3. Colorist Stephen Nakamura graded multiple versions, translating the vision that Scott and cinematographer Dariusz Wolski, ASC, designed in subtly different ways to make the most of each of the different projection systems being used for the film's theatrical release. These include traditional RealD (projected at approximately four footlamberts) and RealD's higher brightness protocol (designed for projection at six footlamberts). Company 3 also provided additional grading services for the IMAX 3D and traditional 2D versions.

Nakamura made use of Company 3's dark fiber network to grade sequences from his DaVinci Resolve theater in Santa Monica while Scott watched the work progress in real time at the Zanuck Theater on the Fox lot, where the director was also engaged in the sound mix on a nearby dubbing stage. Scott watched the images projected with the RealD system in the large theater and the two could compare notes via teleconference.

Nakamura graded the first pass to optimize the imagery for the brightness level of the standard RealD system and subsequently adjusted and fine-tuned the material for the higher-brightness 3D versions. He then completed yet another pass to make the most of the 2D version, which is screened with brighter projection and is absent the slight softening effect that 3D glasses can introduce.

"The difference between the versions is subtle," Nakamura notes. "But obviously artists like Ridley Scott and Dariusz Wolski want their visuals to be amazing at four or six footlamberts and this way of working really helped us fine-tune the finishing process very efficiently."

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