User Story: Fancy Film Delivers Perfection with Help from cineXtools

Nestled in the heart of the hip Los Angeles community of Silverlake, Fancy Film delivers on quality; and it shows with recent award winning works that include films like Beatriz at Dinner, Bueno Vista Social Club: Adios, Fat Camp, Speech and Debate and The Ballad of Lefty Brown. Whether it’s online work, color, conform or deliverables, Fancy Film focuses on providing end to end service for feature films, documentaries and television series.

“I found about cineXtools through a colleague, but I’ve been looking for file-based insert edit for a long time,” says Bill Macomber, owner of Fancy Film. “There’s no doubt that cineXtools is saving us a ton of time. Once my guys got their hands on the software, there was no turning back.”

“The Guys” are Tony Shek, Fancy’s lead conformist and Matt Nordby, whose main responsibilities include creating Deliverables and QC. “Much of my day to day work involves fixing QC issues,” says Tony. “Everything that leaves here has to be perfect – there’s no margin of error. Workflow bottlenecks are caused by our having to re-QC the entire feature-length file to make sure there wasn’t an export issue,” he explains. “I never viewed re-QCing our master file to be a waste of time, until now. Sure, it was tedious, but it was an essential part of our service because we then create a multitude of deliverables from the master file,” says Tony. “Using cineXtools has helped us get through fixing QC issues in the master files quickly and easily. We can punch in the change, QC just the edits, then move on. What used to take us 2 hours, now takes 10 minutes.

“It is awesome to know that there is an option to insert changes versus having to re-export and re-QC for every change,” says Matt. “It took almost no time to get up and running with the application, especially with features like drag and drop. The audio versioning tool took some time to get used to, but overall, it’s a very intuitive bit of software.”

Aside from QC fixes, Bill says that cineXtools has helped with tedious tasks like end-credit versioning. “For every feature film, narrative or documentary project, our clients send us a ton of end credit changes. Previously, we would re-export and re-QC for every end credit change. We don’t have to do that anymore now that we’re using cineXtools; we can punch in the new end credit without ever taking the project back to the NLE.”

CineXtools helped out recently with what could have been a challenging project, Tony explains. “A recent client needed to recut their feature-length documentary at the very last minute. The logos and end crawl hadn’t been finalized, but they needed to get the film delivered. Our solution was to provide them with a version that had slugs where the logos and end-credits were. Once we received the final logos and end-crawl, we just replaced the shots and QC’d only the newly inserted shots.”

When asked about favorite features of cineXtools, insert-editing to ProRes was a unanimous first, but cineXtools’ Audio Versioning Feature comes in as a close second. “We use cineXtools to marry the master audio and master video without taking the project back to the NLE. We’re not re-encoding the file, so we’re saving time by saving on a watchdown,” says Bill. “Frequently, our clients ask for versions of their project with different audio layouts. For instance, if a client wants a version with a mixed down stereo pair, we can do that quickly with cineXtools knowing that it is also a fully QC’d file. Meanwhile, our edit rooms are doing the work they were meant for so it’s really a double savings.”

“We are delivering high quality work consistently and our clients now expect a certain level of perfection from us,” Bill concludes. “cineXtools is helping us to deliver on client expectations because we can focus on creating the best end-product instead of getting hung up on workflow processes.”

Fancy Film has used cineXtools on “The Ballad of Lefty Brown”, “Speech and Debate” and “Fat Camp.” Complete Credits List

An award-winning veteran of narrative and documentary post production, Bill spent over a decade as an editor and post supervisor. His technical and project management skills are the bedrock of Fancy Film’s success. In 2003, he started Fancy Film and hasn’t looked back. Focusing their post-production services on creating seamless workflows from dailies to deliverables, Fancy Film is a full service post-production facility with 17 edit rooms as well as DCI certified theater in the trendy LA community of Silverlake.

4212 Santa Monica Blvd, Silverlake | 323.661.0391 | info@fancyfilm.com