June 28, 2012

Enhancing upcoming HBO drama Veep

Technicolor provides Front End, DI and Mastering for new Sky Atlantic show

Technicolor is delighted to reveal its involvement in the HBO series Veep, providing Front End, Digital Intermediate (DI) and Mastering services.

Veep, which will premiere on Sky Atlantic this month, is a HBO television comedy series set in the office of a fictional US Vice President. It is based on the "fly on the wall" documentary style of sitcom The Thick of It.

The program by The Thick of It’s creator Armando Iannucci, follows former Senator Selina Meyer (Julia Louis-Dreyfus), who has accepted the call to serve as Vice President of the United States. The job is not like she imagined and everything she was warned about. Veep follows Meyer and her staff as they attempt to make their mark and leave a lasting legacy, without getting tripped up in the day-to-day political games that define Washington.

Veep, which was shot on the Arri Alexa camera in Log-C ProRes 4:4:4:4 format was a unique project because individual elements were done in different parts of the world. The shoot was done in Baltimore US; the dailies processing – including file management and creation of .mxf for edit – was undertaken in New York in the US; while the final edit and post production was carried out in London, UK.

Once each episode had been finalised in the offline suite, Technicolor Senior Editor Siôn Penny re-conformed the media from the original uncompressed ProRes codec on the Autodesk Smoke for Mac system, performing the sync check and any basic visual effects.

Following this, a .dpx stream was exported for the grade and Technicolor Senior Colorist Dan Coles graded the pictures using Autodesk’s Lustre. Working closely with Director of Photography Jay Feather, Dan set about creating an overall look and feel for the series.

Dan says: “Above all we wanted to create a natural look to the new series. We enhanced the richness and vibrancy of the images in a fairly subtle way – it was important not to be too glossy, or overstated. Some scenes worked well with cooler tones, but mostly we tended to accentuate the warmer tones in the spectrum.”

Working alongside the grade, Technicolor Senior Visual Effects Artist Dolores McGinley completed the visual effects work including all green screen car comps, continuity fixes, paint outs and flare removal. Once the grade and visual effects were complete the titles, end credits, captions and additional effects were added by Editor Siôn Penny on Avid DS software.

Technicolor New York’s On Location Services team did the digital dailies on the show, in cooperation with the On Set Services Group. Technicolor Digital Imaging Technician Matt Goetz operated the Digital Printer Lights, which have been used on over 40 Broadcast shows as well as on Veep.
Technicolor is delighted to have provided services on such an exciting new HBO TV series. Our team was integral to the natural look and feel of a programme we expect to be hugely successful when it airs on Sky this month.

Technicolor Credits

Producer: Louise Stevenson/Emma Hulme
Editor: Siôn Penny
Graphics: Dolores McGinley/Simon Giblin
Colourist: Dan Coles