- Wednesday, Feb. 4, 2015
In the just published second installment of a series of Sponsored Entertainment & Advertising Technology features, SHOOT delves into how workflows are shifting, often in profound ways that are truly bringing the advantages of digital tools and technologies to TV, film, commercials, and many other areas of media and entertainment. In this feature, SHOOT spotlights four pioneering companies--including MTI Film--exploring how they have found ways to build workflows that enable flexibility, speed and creativity.
The feature titled “Surveying New Workflows: Expanding The Power And Creativity Of Production & Post” was published on January 30, 2015 across SHOOT’s digital and print platforms including SHOOT Magazine, SHOOTonline and The SHOOT>e.dition. MTI Film CEO Larry Chernoff was interviewed for the article.
An excerpt from the SHOOT feature about MTI Film...
MTI Film has over a decade of experience in digital dailies. “As a software developer, we’ve been heavily involved in the dailies process for the last 12 years,” says company CEO Larry Chernoff. “We feel that CORTEX Dailies is quite mature, and is utilized by our clients every day, day-in and day-out.” Over those years, he adds, they’ve encountered additional issues needing to be addressed–so that’s what they’re doing. “We’re making Cortex the Swiss army knife of utility post production,” Chernoff adds.
One issue is dead pixels. “Virtually every camera has an issue with dead pixels, which appear as bright red, green or blue dots,” says Chernoff. “QC people can often see them on the screen but have no way to fix it. They’re very difficult to detect because dead pixels can be fairly subtle in one portion of the shot and more obvious in others.”
MTI Film’s software development team created an algorithm that not only sees all the dead pixels but also gives the user an opportunity to make adjustments on set or in post. This software module measures two parameters: minimum confidence (does the pixel persist throughout the clip or is it intermittently hidden?) and minimum severity (is the dead pixel dim, blending in with the background, or is it very visible?). The operator can control both parameters within the tools to refine the results.
The module can be used in several different ways: on set, the DIT can quickly assess the integrity of the camreas, a studio or network QC operator can utilize the module to detect objectionable dead pixels, and send back a CORTEX Manifest with the corresponding metadata. The post house then imports that report and automatically fixes the pixels in question. Or, the post house can do its own QC, setting its own threshold of acceptability and level of correction and making those corrections. “We’ve utilized our knowledge derived from our DRS™ Nova film restoration product for the correction technology,” he says. “But the detection is new – and unique to us.”
Dead pixel detection also could play an important role in production, says Chernoff, who notes the DIT would welcome a way to alert filmmakers about a problematic camera before committing to production.
All of the new CORTEX editions will offer detection, but not all of them will enable correction; a QC person would have the ability to detect dead pixels and correct them as long as they have the CORTEX Enterprise Edition.
MTI Film’s software development team is also addressing the need for basic editing tools in CORTEX. “As part of the dailies process, you create and transcode files and, later in post, you assemble from OCN camera masters and then manufacture new files – and often those files in some ways have to be altered for specific delivery requirements,” says Chernoff. “Blacks might have to be inserted or removed, slates might have to be inserted or removed, and you also have different deliveries from that same file.”
Instead of working in an expensive editing environment, the new edit module for CORTEX allows the user to do simple edits on any of the files in an offline environment. “You don’t have to go into an edit bay, but can do it in the machine room, with lower labor costs. Or, in the cutting room, the assistant and apprentice editors are able to modify files without disturbing the editor working on an Avid. That way CORTEX serves multiple purposes beyond dailies,” he says.
MTI Film has also implemented Version 1 of ACES, and Netflix’s version of IMF, which is essentially to package the picture and audio in a way that is compatible with their IMF requirements. “Netflix has a fairly simple implementation,” says Chernoff. “But the supplementary IMF, such as localization of media for various countries is a bit more complex and it’s our intention to implement that into CORTEX as well.”
CORTEX is also being used as a tool for up-conversion, particularly from HD to UHD. According to Chernoff, over the past year, CORTEX has been used at 20th Century Fox to up-convert Life of Pi, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Night at the Museum, and Wolverine. Starz and WB also intend to use CORTEX for up-conversions, and Universal Digital Services has purchased eight CORTEX systems to be used “in all phases of post production” including dailies and up-conversion.
► Click Here to read the online version of the article.
► Click Here to view article in the PDF version of the January 30, 2015 of SHOOT Magazine (click on first issue at top of page)
► Click Here to view/download PDF version of just the article.
► Click Here to request information on the next SHOOT Entertainment and Advertising Technology sponsored feature. Sponsorship includes participation in feature article plus digital/print advertising & promotion. The next feature, 4K & Beyond, will be published on March 20, 2015.
About MTI Film
Since 1997 MTI Film has provided award winning software applications to the post-production industry with a focus on technology for digital film restoration and digital dailies. MTI Film has fostered strong ties with our customers and an in-house services arm to provide real-world, real-time development experience. CORTEX Dailies and CORTEX Dailies Enterprise Edition are next generation solutions for a complete dailies workflow from set to delivery, including tools to Copy, Color, Sync, and Transcode all popular media formats. Newly released DRS™ NOVA is MTI Film’s latest software application for digital film restoration. MTI Film offers the most advanced, efficient and user-friendly applications on the market. For more information visit www.mtifilm.com.
About SHOOT Magazine / SHOOTonline
SHOOT® Magazine and SHOOTonline® are the leading publication and website for commercial and entertainment production & postproduction; edited for agency, movie & studio creative and production executives, executives at commercial and entertainment production/post companies, TV/Online/Mobile networks, brand marketer production executives, independent filmmakers and artisans including directors, cinematographers, editors, colorists, vfx supervisors/artists/animators, composers, sound designers & mixers. Through its “News” and “ScreenWork” sections, “Columns” and in-depth “Features”, SHOOT publishes timely news, relevant information and a behind-the-scenes look at the best new work and profiles/interviews with industry news makers. In addition, SHOOT reports on the latest cinematography, post & editing technology and equipment. If the work involves advertising and entertainment motion picture content that consumers view on a screen---a TV screen, Cinema screen, Computer screen, Mobile screen or Game screen, SHOOT is searching out who’s doing the most innovative work and what’s coming next. For further information please visit www.SHOOTonline.com®
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