Maybe it would fit in a big BIG box?
Maybe it would fit in a big BIG box?
Mike, do you think it would be possible for you to put your official job title and the name of the Corporation you work for in your RU signature ... it would avoid any confusion as to whether you're speaking as a highly informed (and well respected) individual or whether you're representing the views and Corporate policies of one of the largest post-houses in LA.
On Location Services Director
Epic-M - $1500/day
Alexa - $1800/day
Sony F65 - $2500/day
Phantom - $3000/day
From a studio perspective, I'm not saying they don't care about $1500 a week or $4000 a week -- that's assuming you get the standard "4 days = 1 week" deal -- but I would say that a $10,000 difference is not going to be a deal-breaker for a DP making a regular studio picture. The biggest expense is lenses, camera mounts, cranes, dollies, grip gear, and lighting. (Granted, multiple cameras will double or triple these costs, but we know that rate-card prices are almost always improved in the final deal.)
I agree with Mike that when it comes to post, there are many, many, many different alternatives to choose from nowadays, and many different ways to cross the finish line. I also agree that when it comes to massive amounts of material -- which I think would happen on (say) a 4K 3D project -- this is not something one on-set dailies person could easily do on a little rolling cart. I think every situation is different, and some would require 3 or 4 people all working in tandem to do de-Bayering, backups, dailies color correction, syncing, and numerous outputs. A straightforward production could be done with a guy on a laptop, or a bigger rolling cart solution like what LightIron, eFilm, Deluxe, Technicolor, Creative Science, Fotokem, and several others have. Some use proprietary software, some using off-shelf gear, some use a combination, but it's all doable and all of it can work.
Actually, I did "sort of" attend the DGA event, except that I was in New York. They live streamed two of the panels from L.A. (the one on the WIGS channel, and the one on creatures), and I did a "live" panel with Mark Pedersen.
And although I respect Michael, I would also remind you that some of the people in my department at Technicolor and myself have been doing location based daily work for over 3 years now, before Lightiron ever existed. It was one of the foundations of Next Element, even before the equipment and software was as cheap and simple as it is now. And it was the basis for Creative Bridge, which goes back even further. It didn't suddenly start with either Lightiron or Colorfront, these ideas and various implementations of them have been around longer than most people on RedUser seem to realize. What has changed is economies of scale and a willingness to make less on the services.
Honestly Mike, I dont know which IATSE Union you are talking about, maybe you are only talking about Los Angeles DITs joining but In NYC and the entire East Coast its very very difficult.
I can say for Local 52 NYC/East Coast (Grip, Electric, Props, Set Dressing, Sound) and 600 in NYC that Non Union hours are completely unacceptable.
For Local 52 it takes much more than a payment of initiation.
You need to sign up for the test,
Pay an application fee, have your application approved,
Get "Permitted" to work on a Union Job,
Collect 100s of union hours
Take the test,
pass the test(which has a huge failure rate),
Go to a Union Vote which is only twice a year, hope that there is over 200 members to make a legal Quorum,
Have 2 members stand up for you and address the meeting on why you should be a member,
Get voted in,
Then Pay initiation fees.
In addition you need to take an Osha Articulating lift Class followed by written and practical test where you take a 90' Condor to Maximum height with any warning beeps, and I didn't get any stipend for it, and out of curiosity, who and why would would they pay for this?
For Local 600 in NYC, you need to be hired by a producer of a Union Job that will represent you joining through their job (Good luck with that, Its about the last thing a producer wants to do), and then get letter's of recommendation from Local 600 members, then pay 25% of $10,000 and pay off the rest in 6 months.
I can really only speak for the national locals (600 and 700). I was unaware that the NY locals might remain a bit more closed. I guess one way around it, at least for camera, would be to come to L.A. for a while, work locally, and join 600 as a Western Region member, then relocate. Seems kind of goofy, but then again, when 600 was 659, if you worked in NY they had to hire a "standby DP" out of the NY local. Those kind of practices were in part the impetus for creating the national locals.
As for the safety classes, that's a California OSHA thing, and goes back for at least the last 3 or 4 contracts. It is administered by Contract Services, which is run by the employers, and yes, you do get a stipend for attending your mandatory classes (it's pretty low, about $15, but at least you get something....). The reason for doing it is largely workmens' comp and other insurance related, but it's a good practice none the less. Job safety in the film business is taken very, very seriously in California. I wish it was taken just as seriously everywhere else.
Lastly, I am not a DIT and never have been. I'm in 600 as a Visual Effects Supervisor/Director of Photography, and in 700 as a colorist.
This doesnt really apply to Studio jobs but will effect it, I'm worried about what the Black Magic Camera and the free Divinci License that comes with it will do to the post biz. Maybe with Divinci and FCPx for $300 we will have truly reached the bottom.
If this camera looks better than a 5D which it probably will, its going to be the most used camera around with huge Divinci Exposure. Divinci is going to give a lot Directors, Producers and Editors all the tools that post facilities try to sell. And if you've tried the divinci 9 beta you will see how easy the interface is. A couple Youtube tutorials and you are grading and transcoding and soon will be qualifying and tracking.
My humble post biz built around Scratch has already taken a huge hit due to divinci and I've been rerouting my career from providing post services.
Its not about the tools, anyone can have them now.
Its no longer "Good, Fast or Cheap. Pick one." anymore and especially when selling an Epic workflow its:
Free, Almost Free, or Alexa...
About these camera prices in NYC
Epic is Way way Cheaper here. Workflow still scares the work away though.
Epic-M - $1500/day This if for a complete Epic package, media, monitor,evf, batts ect.
Alexa - $1800/day Body only
Sony F65 - $2500/day Body only
Phantom - $3000/day Body Only
Non of these prices include Accessories
From a "do everything over the network" mentality, I like the new 10gigabit networks, but most things are still 1 gigabit (if your lucky) ... and moving 1 terabyte at 1 gigabit takes me over 24 hours. The new 12 Terabyte's in a e-sata box are nice for sending data, but that's always a week process of file delivery when it's all said in done. 10 gigabit is nice, but really means you have to have the post house running on a cloud farm. Long term the cloud farms make a lot of sense to me, and I think the new unix guys, even the low end Indie's, think this way. Cloud farms almost by conception require a component based server approach too (compelling feature is globalization that allows compositing and vfx integration as part of the post component work flow) - but talk about competitive pressure and peoples brains blowing up on the concept. So my view is in a box solutions really do not work except for a small set of requirements, a component approach that is cloud based mixed with client local super computers is what I'd bet on.
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