Friday, April 19, 2013

A Friday in the Life of an Editor

4am – Up and check export and renders from the previous night. Find out the export was put out incorrectly. Start it over. Try to go back to sleep.

 6am – Back up to check that export. All is well this time around. Go to work editing the feature doc that is due Monday.

10 am – Welcome assistant editor #1. Get him set up in the living room. (yeah, this editor works from his home. Today he’s going to sweeten and fill out a partially done M&E track. 12 projects all needing complete foreign deliverables were dropped on my doorstep only a week ago and are due today. Go back to work on the doc.

11 am – Welcome assistant editor #2. Set him up on the 2nd computer in my office. Today he’s working on trailers for three of said movies for delivery. I received the final movie files, but trailers were never cut. So I move onto my laptop and start backing up some of the newly arrived files.

230pm – Have assistant editor #1 wrap up his sweetening and start exporting and transferring files to the delivery harddrive. 3pm – Do final check on the 8 movies we’re delivering today. All files there? All files intact? I hope so.

330pm – Start assistant editor #1 working on fresh M&E tracks for the 3 new movies we just received today. Send assistant editor #2 to the post office to mail off a HD master of a just sold movie. (**the very one I was exporting last night.)

4pm – Lunch!

5pm – Give assistant editor #1 an external drive so he can take the work home and finish up tomorrow, freeing up my 2nd computer so I can get back to work on the doc.

8pm – send assistant editor #2 home and wrap up my day by backing up everything. I’ve got multiple harddrives connected to all three computers all working through the night.


Saturday, April 13, 2013

Friday, April 12, 2013

Another Friday in the Life

The company I direct/edit/write for just go a big foreign buy from South America. So, I’m converting 10 of our past projects to PAL as well as preparing M&E and Music Cue sheets for all 10. But why didn’t you do this in the first place, you may ask. Well, short answer is I should’ve. But there were time pressures in getting out the US versions and many titles never go foreign.

All this week I’ve had all my computer systems running over time. One computer exporting pals, the other doing the M&E and Cue sheets. Oh, not to mention the DOC and feature edits I’m still working on. It’s been a little busy.

6:30AM – Get up and check on my work. One computer is rending out an old project. I no longer have the QuickTime export for it, so I have to create a new one from the original footage and edit file. The color correction filters on it are pretty intensive and I don’t usually keep render files when I store a project (this is something I’m changing as of now). It still has four hours to render. So I check my second computer, it’s converting H264 files from another old project. It has 3 hours left. So I get on my laptop, check emails ECT.
7 AM – goto eat breakfast. I’m going to say a quick work about the shitty, shitty service at the Broken Egg in downtown Burbank… The past four times I’ve went (yeah, I keep going, cuz it’s right next to my house) the service as been atrocious. I waited over 20 minutes for my check last time and never got the water I ordered or a coffee refill. Today I walk in and wait for 5 mins. No greeting. No server or host in site. I went to the grocery and bought breakfast.
730 am – cook breakfast. Eat.
8am – Go over my to do list. Check Harddrive Space. Write out some questions for the doc. Interview I’m shooting at 10am.
9am – get everything ready for the interview.
10am – greet crew. By crew I mean, dude with camera and mic and make-up. Maybe some producers. There will probably be more producers than crew out set. Nothing new.
1030 am – first interview set to arrive.
1pm – wrap up interviews. Spend about an hour prepping my assistant editor to create a full M&E for one of the projects I’m prepping for South America.
130pm – work for a couple of hours on two of the harder projects.
330pm – head out to Beverly Hills for a meeting/drinks.

The rest is a question mark right now, but I will for sure be starting two projects exporting before bed.

Monday, April 8, 2013

5 Reason I Love Mean Guns

Mean Guns is pretty much the apex of the late night HBO movies from the 90's. One of Albert Pyun's very best. Great set up and great execution.
Here's just five of the reasons I dig it the most.

1. Christopher Lambert's hair.
2. Ice Tea's response to "What if we don't want to play."
3. Mambo
4. Barbie

I'm Still not a Crook! 2010 Flashback

I wrote this post back in 2010. Now it's 2013 and I found myself facing a similar situation recently.
Instead of coming up with a whole new bitch and possibly embarrassing a person I'm currently working with, I decided to repost this.

I'm not a Crook.

I’m waiting for the 1st reel of Trap to render and thought I’d rant for a second…

So I’m on the set of decent sized production (it will remain nameless). It’s a union show, I’m talking to the make-up artist and I mention that I just finished a low budget feature. I’m of course a little proud of how much we were able to do on such a little budget, so I mention it. She snidely replies, “I suppose its cuz you didn’t pay anyone. It’s crooks like you that away jobs from experienced able professionals like me.”
So now it’s my fault that this makeup artist is having trouble getting into the union and making ends meet. Oh really!?

1st off, I know that there are productions companies out there, that hire folks for nothing, take advantage, make a quick buck and never put anything into anything other than their own pockets. I know these companies and people exist. I worked for more than a few myself. So I get her point. But that’s not me. I’m not wealthy man. I’ve made less on my movies personally than I’ve paid out to folk working on them, and I put every dime that I do make into future productions so that I can hopefully afford to pay folk like her in the future on larger productions.

2nd off. I’m not taking jobs from folk like her. When I cast and crew up for any micro-budget feature, I start with friends, friends that owe me favors. I’ve worked on many features for friends at a low or even free rate, with the understanding that they’d do the same for me… Now this chick replies to this, “I don’t have any friends that I’d ask to work for free.” I don’t know what kind of friends this girl as, but isn’t that what friends do (to a point, without taking advantage). Don’t friends help one another out? If you have a mechanic friend and your car breaks down. Would you ask that friend (or would that friend straight out offer to take a look) maybe not completely fix it depending on what was wrong, but wouldn’t a friend at least see what they could do? I can edit. I’ve done so professionally for almost 10 years. And I’ve helped countless actor friends with reels ect.. for free. Because I’m their friend. Is it wrong for me to accept the same kind of help?

3rd. When I do hire strangers, I don’t go out looking for union, experienced folk. I look for people new to the game looking for experience. When I hire a  key make artist for example, I may hire someone without any credits as a key, someone who the credit means something to, someone that would otherwise not get that shot on a union or higher paid show.  Now I also go into this knowing that I may not get the same quality of work I would from a more experienced worker, but that’s the kind of compromise you make when you’re working on a mircro-budget feature. And sometimes you get lucky, like I did on Trap or Monsters in the Woods with many crew members who had limited experience.

Somewhere during this conversation, I mention how he shot on the Cannon 7D and how its an awesome quality camera. And she make an under her breathe comment about “how her boyfriend has one and she doesn’t see what makes it so great.” Well, if he can’t make stuff look good with it, he must not know what he’s doing. Which brings me to her next statement “Now everyone is picking up camera’s like the 5 and 7D’s and calling themselves filmmakers.” I kinda agree with her there, there are a bunch of folk out there just buying equipment and calling themselves filmmakers. But this is far from my situation. I have a degree in film production. I’ve worked over 10 years now as an editor, shooter, pa, director, ect… on all kinds of productions, big, small, micro, you name it.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

A Wednesday Agenda

Many, many things to do this week, I’m attempting to list everything out just to keep it straight in my head. Often times when things start piling up, I almost shut down, spending more time deciding what to tackle then actually working on the problems.

  1. Upload trailer files to distributor. (They’re server went down late last night and I had to restart the upload this morning. This time, I’m sending one at a time. They take aprox. 3 hours a piece.) I’m halfway through this task.
  2. I’ve got 10 features in catalog that I need to do PAL exports/transcodes for. Each one takes about 24 hours to complete.  The next few things will be in service of that.
  3. Free up some space on my laptop. 700Gigs of 1TB are being used now. I’ve got to transfer some files to an external and free up some space.
  4. Free up space on my tower. Need to keep it functionary for continued editing while my laptop is busy PALing.  Have a new documentary project coming in tomorrow.
  5. Reconnect media and start SOX PAL export.
  6. Finish Syncing Pastor Shirley.
  7. Finish script polish on a few scripts for a slate of flicks I’m putting together.
  8. Schedule Voice over session.
  9. Breathe and eat.
  10. Sleep.