Director Steven Spielberg’s latest film, the fantasy-adventure The BFG, was written by Melissa Mathison, and stars Academy Award-winning actor Mark Rylance. Adapted from Roald Dahl’s children’s novel, The BFG is dedicated to Mathison, who passed away just after principal photography, and is a fitting tribute to the celebrated writer of one of the most prominent films in Spielberg’s career, the classic E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial.
Photographed by Academy Award-winning cinematographer, Janusz Kaminski, The BFG was color-graded and finished by Technicolor’s senior supervising colorist Michael Hatzer and his team from the company’s Hollywood location, with production dailies support from Technicolor on-location teams in Vancouver and London - a global effort for the visually spectacular project.
Produced by Spielberg’s Amblin Entertainment, along with DreamWorks SKG and the Kennedy/Marshall Company, the project also marks his first film made for The Walt Disney Company. The BFG premiered at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, and received almost universal accolades for the film’s visuals. (Hatzer joined the filmmaking team in Cannes to ensure that the projection color-calibration at the various festival venues was on-par with his finishing suite in Hollywood.) Upon completion of the festival presentations, Hatzer turned his attention to the film’s HDR theatrical mastering, overseen by Mr. Spielberg, and performed shortly after the Cannes premiere.
Hatzer, working with Kaminski, helped define the film’s magical storybook look derived from principal stage photography in Vancouver, along with locations that included Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire, England, Buckingham Palace in central London, and various helicopter establishing shots above the Scottish Highlands. Freelance colorist John Vladic oversaw the film’s dailies’ color-grading for both the Vancouver and UK portions of photography. Technicolor’s on-location services team of Chris Van Duyn, Kenny Vicent, Cory Pennington and Stuart Bryce, worked with first unit in Vancouver. Technicolor’s London-based team of Chema Gomez and Lindah Luseno processed dailies for the UK portion of photography. Technicolor London created a customized workflow that allowed for Vladic’s work on his Resolve to be easily ported to the Soho facilities’ Baselight system, with support from Technicolor color-scientist Josh Pines, along with the company’s senior supervising master-colorist, Peter Doyle.
The color-finishing team in Hollywood beyond Hatzer included his assistant Chris Jensen, account manager-producer Ladd Lanford, producer Bob Peishel, with Everett Webber and Mark Sahagun performing editorial conform duties. Darin Wooldridge handled home video mastering as well as 3D mastering from Hatzer’s grade.
Technicolor Marketing Services provided color-grading on an array of theatrical and broadcast trailers, overseen by Adam Nazarenko.