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Issue: December 1, 2010

Editor's Letter: What's your outlook on 2011?

By: Randi Altman

Welcome, once again, to our year-end trends issue where we ask the industry to reflect on the past year and look ahead to the next. In addition to our SWOTs (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) that run on the pages of Post, we will be hosting many more on www.postmagazine.com.

Below I asked just a few other industry pros to comment on what they expect to see in 2011. 

Dave Waller, co-founder of Brickyard VFX in Boston, says, “I think that the race to cheaper and faster at the expense of quality for visual effects has been an ongoing trend that continues to move forward. But, I’m starting to see that budgets have bounced back for commercial VFX replacing ‘cheaper’ with ‘quality’ and am also sensing an increase in corporations spending more money on their advertising efforts, which is a great thing for companies like Brickyard. 

“The movement to unionize film VFX artists is also prominent at the moment — I have mixed feelings given the amount of VFX work already sent overseas,” he concludes.

“This is an exciting time to be a filmmaker. I think we’ll see image capture systems and post workflows become even more unified than they are now. In the big picture, digital image capture systems are still very young,” says commercial director Fred Raimondi of BRW-USA. “I think you’ll see more shops — production companies specifically — that shoot, edit  and finish. The barrier to entry is much lower than it was even five years ago. Not so much for big VFX jobs, but for story/talent/character-driven stuff. It’s not only feasible, it’s cost effective to do much of the work in-house. I believe we’re entering the DIY phase of filmmaking — the age of the independent contractor. Which goes back to what I’ve always held to be the truth: It’s not about machines, it’s about talent.”

Bill Roberts, COO of LA-based LaserPacific, says, “The accelerating proliferation of digital capture in all forms of content and at all production budget levels will continue to challenge post companies to provide efficient end-to-end workflow solutions while maintaining creative flexibility and quality.”

He also sees “continued penetration of on-set post services and their integration into end-to-end workflows,” and believes that to succeed in both areas, you need to provide “efficient, cost effective solutions that do not diminish finishing flexibility and quality.”

What’s your outlook for 2011? Email me and we’ll put them on www.postmagazine.com.