Issue: December 1, 2009


Nancy Shames
Executive Producer/Partner
Crew Cuts
New York

Crew Cuts, is a full service post house that provides commercial and film editing, visual effects, motion graphics, audio/sound design, and mixing. Their credits include award winning work for GE, Dairy Queen, Saturday Night Live, L’Oreal, Home Depot, Time Warner Cable and Holiday Inn.  

STRENGTHS: “Crew Cuts has spent the greater part of 2009 building on, and solidifying, its infrastructure in order to maintain a talented, diversified and nimble post production facility.  Our people are paramount and our investment in top-end technology empowers them. We have created a good incubator to let talent blossom here, on all levels. When we expanded this year to house EFX, audio, and finishing, we achieved a new level of fluidity and creative quality in a very short amount of time. On the technological side, our company needs to adapt as quickly as the tools are available. As a result, we are in a constant state of upgrade; always equipped with the best possible technology.

“A strength for our industry is that content is being celebrated everywhere - media and mediums always expanding. As editors, effects geeks, sound experts and graphic designers for the advertising and film industries, our job will always be telling stories through creative content, no matter how that content is dispersed – film, video, viral, broadcast, mobile, or otherwise.”

WEAKNESSES: “I’d say one of our weaknesses is ironically our almost neurotic perfectionism. Even under the tightest of timelines (and budgets), we’ll do full placeholder graphics, garbage mats, create our own titles, do music searches, perfect sound design, the whole nine. No matter if it’s a :20 viral or a 20-spot campaign, no matter for what medium, in what language or on what sort of deadline, our process never waivers and we always have to make it work.”

OPPORTUNITIES: “The Hispanic market is an area of great potential. One of our editors, Gabriel de la Mora, was recently brought in on some major campaigns for brands like Verizon, Home Depot and the NFL. Work like this helps post houses grow not only financially, but also culturally and creatively. It’s about understanding the subtleties of another culture, and letting that knowledge and inspiration translate through the work. It’s an exciting market.

“On the Crew Cuts end, we are actually in the process of receiving our minority certification as a woman-owned business. This will help to diversify our company, opening doors to jobs that better reflect our clients, consumers, and the changing world around us. We see huge opportunity in this.”

THREATS: “Other than the current economic state and the obvious fact that advertising is among those industries being hit hardest…..?  I would say the biggest threat to Crew Cuts as a company is the recent trend of agencies bringing full service editing and post, in-house. It’s an understandable move – it creates an alternative profit center for the agency, and also enables them to keep outsourcing/vendor costs down — but at what expense? Therein lies the threat to our industry. You can build the walls, and buy the equipment, but you can’t conjure up the talent and creativity required to produce top quality work from start to finish. It’s getting, growing and maintaining that level of talent inside that will prove very difficult for these agencies.”