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Modern NLEs bring much more to the table than seamless editing. Apps such as Adobe Premiere Pro continue to add features that give editors every post-production tool they need for audio, color grading, titles, special effects, and more. These tools empower editors to take greater control of their edits and deliver excellent results faster.
But the all-in-one approach doesn’t work for all productions. Top Hollywood film and television projects typically work with multiple production houses that each play a specialized role: pre-processing dailies, finalizing color, or creating award-winning sound. To deliver better, faster content within these complicated post-production workflows, editors need to understand how reliable handovers can make the difference between a smooth edit and a stressful scramble.
At Post|Production World 2021, Adobe’s Karl Soule shared insider knowledge on what it takes to bring major productions together. Soule has been at Adobe for over 15 years working with film and television productions to help create workflows that meet tight deadlines and high expectations. From consulting on documentaries such as The Biggest Little Farm to effects-filled blockbusters such as Terminator: Dark Fate, Soule has seen firsthand how to best bring Hollywood edits across the finish line.
Metadata is king
With footage running through dozens of hands during the course of a production, metadata is critical to keeping everyone aligned. It’s what allows sound engineers to find the right sound rolls for any take. It’s how special effects houses keep track of frame rates for every scene. While it might not seem like an important part of the creative process, making sure metadata stays consistent and organized can help prevent disaster.
Soule suggests taking the time to run the entire pipeline from start to finish before diving into post-production. Make sure that everyone gets the correct metadata along the way, and you’ll be in for a much better experience moving forward.
Handovers done right
A smooth handover starts with a clean and organized edit. Soule recommends prepping sequences before handing them off to other production houses. Take advantage of color-coding and labels to keep track of audio tracks. Separate mono and stereo clips. Use tools such as Change List CC or mfChangeNote to create reliable change lists for handovers.
Color code different types of audio clips in Adobe Premiere Pro, such as sound effects, music, and dialogue, using right-click menu commands “Label” > “Select Label Group” to easily label clips by color and keep tracks organized for smooth handovers.Soule also introduced a new beta feature in Premiere Pro made specifically for handovers: Simplify Sequence. Using Simplify Sequence, editors can quickly remove unwanted markers, graphics, and transitions.
The Adobe Premiere Pro (Beta) feature Simplify Sequence enables ultra-fast cleanups to remove unwanted markers, graphics, or transitions, and was specifically created for turnover-based workflows.
Getting the most out of Premiere Pro
Soule also shared some specific features and tricks that all Premiere Pro editors should be aware of:
- Productions: Soule recommends editors take advantage of Productions for editing on major media projects. It’s designed from the ground up to meet the rigorous demands of film and television workflows. It helps keep days of footage organized and available at your fingertips.
- Multi-Cam: Even when working with single-camera footage, use the multi-camera editing workflow to sync picture and sound. Not only will it preserve timecodes, but it helps sync multiple clips with a single click.
- Aspect ratio: Many Premiere Pro editors are used to dragging a clip to make a new sequence. But with feature films, it’s especially important to make sure that everything is being edited at the final aspect ratio. Take the time to set up a custom sequence that matches the aspect ratio of the final film.
Productions in Adobe Premiere Pro was designed to meet the rigorous needs of feature film and television workflows. A key ability it provides is linking clips across projects for quickly finding specific shots using menu command “Reveal in Project.”“So many different steps build on top of each other,” says Soule. “Having best practices at the very beginning of a workflow means you're going to have a smoother process at the end, and you're going to avoid a lot of pitfalls and ‘gotchas’ along the way.”
Watch Soule’s Post|Production World 2021 session to learn more about best practices, critical settings, and new features that will improve speed and quality for even the most complex video production workflows.
Karl Soule is Senior Technical Sales Manager, Film & Video at Adobe. Soule works for Adobe as part of the Hollywood engagement team, promoting the use of Adobe Creative Cloud video and audio tools, such as Premiere Pro, After Effects, and Adobe Audition. Karl has been with Adobe for over 15 years in various roles, including as a worldwide evangelist, and as a business development manager, living in Singapore for 5 years, promoting Adobe tools in video production and broadcasting.