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BUILDING A JURASSIC FILM

Codex meets up with DIT Paul Deane on the set of the latest prehistoric blockbuster.

 



Codex had the pleasure of talking with Paul Deane, a DIT whose recent film accolades includes Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. We were able to snag an interview with him on his work on the film and how Codex played a role in bringing this prehistoric summer blockbuster to life.

Codex: How was working on Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom?
Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom was a really exciting project to work on. It was my first time working with the ARRI ALEXA 65 and it allowed us to capture some stunning images. I also really enjoyed working with our 2nd Unit Co-Directors, Eugenio Mira and Patrick Loungway, who was also our Director of Photography. This meant my station was always set up with the director's monitors right next to the action. Every day I would receive graded stills from the main unit DIT, Francesco Giardiello, with all the relevant metadata and the CDL used for that scene. That allowed me to set up everything to match what the main unit had shot. Patrick and I would then discuss the lighting and make any adjustments needed to make sure we were consistent throughout the scene both in what we were shooting but also consistent with the main unit. Because of the large amount of data involved when you shoot on the Alexa65 we tried to reload the cameras as often as was practical so my Data Manager, Kristin Davis, could start backing up the footage using the Codex Vault and performing a final check to make sure everything was consistent and making any needed adjustments. The footage was then passed onto Pinewood Post for transcoding, and archiving to LTO.

What do you enjoy most about being a DIT?
I really enjoy the collaboration with the Director of Photography. For me, the most important aspect of this job is making sure their vision is realised, from the moment the image is captured on the sensor through to my monitors and on to post production and final exhibition. We are therefore constantly discussing and adjusting the lighting, the exposure and the colour to make sure we are accurate and consistent throughout - from shot to shot - and from scene to scene. Communication is key in this regard and having a good relationship with the DoP, the camera crew and post production is essential. I also really enjoy the problem-solving aspects of the role. Every new job, location or technology presents its own challenges.

How did Codex help you out with your workflow on Jurassic World? Describe your setup.
Codex was the cornerstone of our workflow on Jurassic World. We shot mostly on the ALEXA 65, occasionally using the ALEXA Mini and SXT. Shooting ARRIRAW on the ALEXA 65 creates a huge amount of data but using the Codex Vault allowed us to back up this data quickly and securely. It also meant Kristin could review the footage straight away, adding and adjusting important metadata using the filecard system. The speed and efficiency of this system meant that myself and Francesco could review stills from each setup shot throughout the day to ensure consistency before the footage was sent to post production. Transcoding and archiving could then begin immediately when the footage arrived at Pinewood Post so that editorial could start working on the scene first thing.

The value of RAW for image capture is high, however, people perceive it as a challenge. How do you feel about managing RAW workflows with Codex, compared to other formats such as ProRes, RED, IntraAVC, etc.?
The amount of data involved when shooting RAW can seem daunting especially with a camera like the ALEXA 65 but the quality of the image captured is unparalleled. Working with Codex, using either the Production Suite software or ideally using the Vault, means that the data can be managed quickly and efficiently while also giving the maximum level of control and security. All capture formats present their own challenges, the key is carefully planning the workflow from the start.


CODEX ALLOWS US TO CAPTURE AMAZING IMAGES OF UNRIVALED QUALITY


What did you like most working with Codex?
Codex allows us to capture amazing images of unrivaled quality and using Codex hardware and software means we can manage a large amount of data and metadata quickly and securely. I also know that if anything goes wrong, there is always someone at Codex available to help solve any issues quickly.

What’s in store for you over the next few years? Do you have any projects that you can discuss?
I've just finished working on the final season of Game of Thrones so I'm looking forward to seeing that released next year. I've worked on the series since season five so it will be the culmination of an epic journey.

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom was released Summer 2018 and totalled 1.672 billion USD at the Box Office.




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