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When It Absolutely Positively Has To Be There … Overnight

December 15, 2002 at 5:34 am by Demosthenes  - 

Ringer Spy Ataahua writes: Tonight One Network News in New Zealand carried a story on how Peter Jackson, losing precious TTT editing time attending awards ceremonies for FOTR, used new technolgy built by Weta to help him keep working on the film while overseas.

One News presenter Simon Dallow: “Two Towers is a tribute to Kiwi special effects wizardry. But director Peter Jackon only made his deadline thanks to another bit of Kiwi innovation, involving the Internet and video conferencing. Here’s economics reporter Mike Jaspers.”

(Shot of Peter Jackson at a sound desk)

Mike Jaspers voiceover: “Peter Jackson in London in September, finishing the sound track for Two Towers. Back in Wellington, the final special effects are being added. Time’s running out – the director’s already lost five weeks thanks to the Oscars and other awards. He needed more time.”

(Shot of Barry Osborne talking to Mike Jaspers) BO: “Put simply, it was crucial…”

MJ voiceover: “Barry Osbourne’s the producer, on a video link from New York via the Internet – technology vital for meeting deadlines. Each day, hours of editing were emailed to Jackson in London.”

Duncan Nimmo, ‘computer expert’: “In normal circumstances that footage would have to be put on a plane. So being able to do it overnight bought the process three days each time.”

MJ: “The huge volume of data needed a big Internet pipe. Telecom’s Southern Cross cable links us to the northern hemisphere. It funnelled sections of film to Jackson’s computer.”

BO: “Even though he was in London and we were in Wellington, it would be just like he was in Wellington.”

MJ: “Jackson’s computer wizards designed the system to synchronise the video links.”

BO: “Weta built some software to allow us to control the playback on video footage at either end – to slow it down, to play it slowly. And it also had a pointer so Peter could say, ‘Gee, Mordor shouldn’t have all those green trees on it, I want to really have this black rock there’.”

MJ: “It’s all part of Jackson’s vision for Wellington as a one-stop shop for world-class film making. That’s why he’s building a $30 million post-production facility near his other studios. Peter Jackson’s Internet technology removes one more worry for Hollywood moguls considering projects here in Wellywood: they can simply log onto the Internet and view the day’s filming or editing, from the comfort of LA. Smart solutions, all part of Jackson script for success.”

Posted in Old Special Reports on December 15, 2002 by

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