MAKING IT WORK
At Mindsmack (www.mindsmack.tv) in New York City — which handles broadcast promos and spots, as well as interactive and Web work through its Mindsmack.com business — flexibility is the key to getting through challenging economic times.
President/COO Todd Feuer has run a number of post facilities in his career and set up MindsmackTV in 1999. He was formerly a partner at Bionic in NYC, but sold off his share of the business and now operates his own studio, where he is joined by his brother, chief business officer/motion graphics artist Mike Feuer.
The team has a five-room facility on 43rd Street in Manhattan, where they offer editing, via Final Cut, and mixing in 5.1 rooms for clients that include SyFy, History, Showtime and Time Warner Cable. “2009 was the test so see who was actually going to make it,” says Todd Feuer of the current economy. “I know a lot of people that went out of business.”
Mindsmack made some changes of its own to bend with the market. “The big change that we [made was to] shut down a video room and turn it into an audio room,” he notes. “We find that people are still going out more for audio, as opposed to video; that was a very smart change.”
Mindsmack has a small but well-equipped 5.1 room — operated by sound designer/composer/mixer Brian Rund — that features a Euphonix controller. They also have simple surround monitoring and mixing capabilities in their video rooms for clients that require packaged services.
“The bottom line is: clients don’t want to pay more,” Feuer explains. “They only want to pay less. So my whole thing is: make all the rooms as versatile as possible.”
Feuer points to one of his Final Cut suites. “I was editing in that room. We have days where we are editing in the morning and mixing in the afternoon. That’s the business. Real estate in Manhattan is insanely expensive. If we were in Idaho, we’d have a building, but here, it’s make every room do as much as possible. The days of building out a $200-300K audio room? You’ve got to be nuts! You are asking for failure.”