OpenCut 2.0 Is Not For Me

I had a great time working on the first OpenCut project. I got a first-hand look at the Red workflow, which was really useful for me. And I made a fun video in the end. I didn’t win their fabulous prize package, and for obvious reasons I didn’t expect to. I was hoping to work on future OpenCut projects, but I’m skipping the current one. The main reason is the increase in price. I understand that all that shipping and copying takes a lot of effort, but the $25 fee for the first project was low enough that I could enter on a whim. Now it’s up to $75, which is a significant amount of money to pay to edit a commercial for someone else. Which brings me to my second problem. It’s a commercial… for a ski resort. I hate skiing, so looking at slo-motion footage of skiers is not my idea of a good time (although I remember having a great rainy day at summer camp watching a 16mm ski film in reverse). And if I’m going to make a commercial, I’m damn well going to get paid for it. I might still try the music video project they’re doing in the future. I watched a bunch of music videos in HD on MHD over the weekend and I was really disappointed in the lack of ideas on display in the videos these days. The Knights of Cydonia video was incredible though.

OpenCut Final Cut

Here’s the final cut of my OpenCut project. Go to Vimeo to see it in 720p HD. This was a very fun experience. I learned a lot about the Red workflow. It turns out at this point it’s about as easy to use as P2 media. I’m still a little unsure about how I would finish it on a large budget project. I’m perfectly content to finish the project in 2K ProRes, but given the option I know it would be better to do a 4K assembly and color correct from the original files.

It was very unusual for me to work on a script I disliked and have the opportunity to change it beyond what any director would let me. Since I had no contact with the writer/director on this project, it didn’t matter that I thought his script was trite and boring. I wasn’t collaborating with him, I was stealing his footage. The downside of the isolation from the production was that I had nobody to yell at when crucial shots were missed or delivered without sound. I only received one take that had blood on the wall after the gunshot and it was MOS. I used it, but I would have liked some better options. There were several shots covering the end of that scene that included the ear and wall without the blood, but I didn’t use them because the blood would have disappeared. And I didn’t get a lined script, which would have been nice.

I tried using Color to do the color correction, but even as I started to get the hang of it I realized that it was way more control than I needed or had the ability to take advantage of. So I stuck with good old 3-Way Color Corrector in FCP. And I mixed in FCP too. What can I say? I stick with what works.

OpenCut First Cut

This past week I’ve worked a bit on my version of the OpenCut 1.0 project. As I said earlier, I did not care for the script, so I decided to make a few important changes to the tone. I’ve finished up my initial cut, and done a bit of sound work. I’ll probably polish the edit when I’m back from Amsterdam, and do some color correction. I’m hoping to learn how to use Apple’s Color program with this project.

You can see the cut below, or go to Vimeo to watch it in 720p HD.

“Susannah” 06-09-08 from Kyle Gilman on Vimeo.