Welcome to AOTG.com

Sign up free

Be a part of a unique online community that connects post production professionals and film academics worldwide.

You'll have access to personalize your news feed, access to Live Post Talks and much more. Contribute to the community by posting interesting post production content.

Member Login

Social Login!

Not a Member? Sign Up!

(minimum 3 characters)
I agree with the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy
To receive account info and prevent it landing in your spam folder, add info@aotg.com as an email contact.

  • Kerry

    Last Call Uses DaVinci Resolve Studio

    September 3, 2020, 3:17 pm
    Blackmagic Design announced today that the feature film “Last Call,” which was shot in two simultaneous 80 minute takes, was colored in DaVinci Resolve Studio by Colorist and Cinematographer Seth Wessel-Estes, who also used the DaVinci Resolve Micro Panel in his workflow.
    Fremont, CA - September 3, 2020 – Blackmagic Design announced today that the feature film “Last Call,” which was shot in two simultaneous 80 minute takes, was colored in DaVinci Resolve Studio by Colorist and Cinematographer Seth Wessel-Estes, who also used the DaVinci Resolve Micro Panel in his workflow.    


    “Last Call” follows a suicidal alcoholic on the anniversary of his son’s death. When he attempts to call a crisis hotline, a misdial connects him with a single mother working as the night janitor at a local community college. The split screen feature showcases both characters in real time as they navigate a life changing conversation.    

    Director Gavin Booth was no stranger to single take projects, having experience directing a number of one act plays and single shot music videos. He was also director on the Blumhouse project “Fifteen,” which was the world’s very first movie broadcast live, also in a single take. “Last Call” would be a unique approach to filmmaking, in the vein of films such as “Timecode” and “Russian Ark”, both early inspirations for Booth.    

    Both Booth and Cinematographer Wessel-Estes, who was also the colorist on the film, knew there would be significant challenges in coloring a movie without edits, and with two constantly moving shots around a cityscape. “Figuring out the approach of how to color the film was a pretty daunting task,” said Wessel-Estes. “We hadn't ever had to color anything longer than a three or four minute shots in the past.”    

    In preparation, both Booth and Wessel-Estes shot a single take music video for the band Bleu before starting on “Last Call,” working up not only a workflow for production but also a process for handling a constantly changing image.    

    “Last Call” would present a myriad of challenges to the team, all of which would be reflected in the final image that would need to be colored. Each of the characters would be filmed simultaneously, connected only by the cell phone call that was the link in the movie. Booth would follow one character, and Wessel-Estes the other.    

    “We needed to reduce the amount of crew for both camera and sound,” reflected Booth. “There couldn't be a camera assistant or a boom operator. There was nowhere to hide everyone or avoid boom shadows throughout the full single take on either side of the movie. We had to work with our sound mixers to double lav the actors and rely solely on that.” 

    Booth and Wessel-Estes were also the camera operators, and would need to pull their own focus, while the gaffer would have to figure out how to use a mixture of practical lighting as well as hide every single cable and film light since the single take on either side would move 360 degrees through the space. Moving from inside to outside or even room to room meant that the camera's exposure needed to seamlessly adjust at the same time. Every element would either help or hinder the final look, and the team knew they had limited time and budget to get it right.    

    For the look of the project, Booth wanted to maintain a realistic style, and avoid an exaggerated or otherwise over colored look that might have distracted from the character driven drama. “With the use of the long take to show ‘reality’ we wanted to keep it feeling as truthful as possible. For us, having too much of a look on a piece like this can take away from the rawness. We wanted the audience to feel like they were there with the two characters, hanging on every tense word they exchange.”    

    Once in post, Wessel-Estes knew that having a single long take, and hundreds of node corrections on the single shot would be unmanageable. Instead, he imported the project into DaVinci Resolve Studio and used the Edit panel to place cuts throughout the film to give him transition points. “I was able to go in and make cuts along the timeline which acted as scene markers. That way I could individually color each ‘scene’ or area by itself. Luckily with the Resolve editing panel I was able to go in and create edits and use cross dissolves to smoothly and dynamically transition between graded sections.”    

    Wessel-Estes also used the Davinci Resolve Micro Panel for color grading. “It enabled me to not only grade more efficiently but also to have more fine tuned tactile control of individual parameters. Since our look was so naturalistic, I ended up doing tons of very small, subtle corrections which would have been a hassle without having a control surface.”    

    With a split screen showing each character’s part of the story, Booth and Wessel-Estes had a host of challenges to manage. As the camera moved from location to location, both interior and exterior, they knew they would be faced with completely different lighting and exposures throughout the film, requiring careful grading to both marry segments while respecting each new look. “Since we were working with some uncontrolled lighting situations we had to go in and do dynamic exposure and color adjustments as the camera and character move from one space to another.”    

    Matching the two sides of the film so they felt cohesive throughout was also very important. Each half of the screen had its own 'look' but also needed to blend effectively so that the audience wasn't distracted by the visual contrast of the split screen. “Using the built in comparison tools to bring up images side by side as well as the various scopes enabled us to ensure the look would remain cohesive throughout.”    

    Wessel-Estes also used a fair amount of vignetting that needed to be keyframed in order to track with the moving camera. “The built in smart tracking inside of Resolve was hugely helpful for a lot of this work, and I love how simple yet effective it is.” Other DaVinci Resolve Studio tools, such as HSL keys, sharpening masks and advanced keyframing controls came in handy when coloring a single take film. “Having all of these tools at my fingertips enabled me to add a degree of finesse to the look of the finished movie which just wouldn’t have been possible on set.”    

    With “Last Call” taking awards at 25 international film festivals and release slated in theaters on September 18th, Booth is proud of what they have accomplished, achieving a style he has long admired in other projects. “As a filmmaker I have forever been obsessed with long take storytelling; and with audience and critics response, I am thrilled our film's story rises above the ‘gimmick’ of a long take. For me, ‘Last Call’ felt like the next evolution of a filmmaking challenge.”    

    Press Photography  
    Product photos of DaVinci Resolve Studio, the DaVinci Resolve Micro Panel, as well as all other Blackmagic Design products, are available at www.blackmagicdesign.com/media/images.    

    About Blackmagic Design  
    Blackmagic Design creates the world’s highest quality video editing products, digital film cameras, color correctors, video converters, video monitoring, routers, live production switchers, disk recorders, waveform monitors and real time film scanners for the feature film, post production and television broadcast industries. Blackmagic Design’s DeckLink capture cards launched a revolution in quality and affordability in post production, while the company’s Emmy™ award winning DaVinci color correction products have dominated the television and film industry since 1984. Blackmagic Design continues ground breaking innovations including 6G-SDI and 12G-SDI products and stereoscopic 3D and Ultra HD workflows. Founded by world leading post production editors and engineers, Blackmagic Design has offices in the USA, UK, Japan, Singapore and Australia. For more information, please go to www.blackmagicdesign.com.     

    • Report
    • Share
    • Save

    Share this posting

  • Other Postings By Member

    • Kerry
      EDITING

      Mercedes-AMG Shot with Pocket Cinema Camera 6K

      October 28, 2020, 2:28 pm
      Blackmagic Design today announced that a social media campaign for the Mercedes-AMG A-Class was shot with Blackmagic RAW on the Pocket Cinema Camera 6K, with editing and grading completed with DaVinci Resolve Studio.

      • Report
      • Share
      • Save

      Share this posting

    • Kerry
      COLOR

      KRIYA Graded with DaVinci Resolve Studio

      October 26, 2020, 3:05 pm
      Blackmagic Design today announced that “KRIYA,” the new horror film by award winning filmmaker Sidharth Srinivasan, was graded using DaVinci Resolve Studio. Grading of the intense horror film was completed by Delhi based colorist Divya Kehr, with the film premiering at the virtual Fantasia 2020 film festival.

      • Report
      • Share
      • Save

      Share this posting

    • Kerry
      COLOR

      The Cleansing Hour Uses Blackmagic Design

      October 20, 2020, 4:16 pm
      Blackmagic Design announced today that “The Cleansing Hour,” starring Ryan Guzman, Kyle Gallner and Alix Angelis, utilized Blackmagic cameras, ATEM switchers and converters in production, as well as DaVinci Resolve Studio in post production, to create the unique show within a show horror film.

      • Report
      • Share
      • Save

      Share this posting

    • Kerry
      COLOR

      Coca-Cola Commercial Graded with DaVinci Resolve

      October 15, 2020, 2:22 pm
      Blackmagic Design today announced that Malaysia’s colorist Beh Jing Qiang used DaVinci Resolve Studio to grade a new Coca-Cola commercial, which was also shot using Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro 4.6K G2 and Blackmagic RAW.

      • Report
      • Share
      • Save

      Share this posting

    • Kerry
      VFX

      MR Factory Delivers Real Time Virtual Production

      October 14, 2020, 2:43 pm
      Blackmagic Design today announced that MR Factory has deployed six URSA Mini Pro 4.6K G2 cameras, each paired with an Ultimatte 12 compositing processor, as the live action element of its 4K virtual production system.

      • Report
      • Share
      • Save

      Share this posting

    • Kerry
      COLOR

      Kia Emmy® Spot Uses URSA Mini Pro 12K Cameras

      October 12, 2020, 3:21 pm
      Blackmagic Design announced today that the Kia Motors America spot titled “Emmys® Delivery Training,” created as the introduction to the 72nd Emmy Awards broadcast, was shot entirely with Blackmagic Design cameras, and is one of the first projects shot extensively using the new Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro 12K camera.

      • Report
      • Share
      • Save

      Share this posting

    • Kerry
      COLOR

      HBO’s Huracán Shot with URSA Mini Pro 4.6K

      October 8, 2020, 3:14 pm
      Blackmagic Design today announced that the new psychological thriller “Huracán” was shot using a Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro 4.6K digital film camera. Premiering this month on HBO and available to stream on HBO Max, the film was also graded with DaVinci Resolve Studio.

      • Report
      • Share
      • Save

      Share this posting

    • Kerry
      COLOR

      Beckman Uses Pocket Cinema Camera 4K

      October 6, 2020, 7:38 pm
      Blackmagic Design announced today that the revenge action thriller “Beckman,” starring David A. R. White, Billy Baldwin, Jeff Fahey, Burt Young and Brighton Sharbino, was shot on the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K using Blackmagic RAW, and graded in DaVinci Resolve Studio.

      • Report
      • Share
      • Save

      Share this posting

    • Kerry
      COLOR

      Horror Film ALIVE. Created with Blackmagic Design

      October 1, 2020, 3:36 pm
      Blackmagic Design today announced that the new horror film by Rob Grant, “ALIVE.,” used Pocket Cinema Camera 4K for action shots. The film, which was shown across the United States in drive in theaters in September of 2020, was also graded using Blackmagic Design’s DaVinci Resolve.

      • Report
      • Share
      • Save

      Share this posting

    • Kerry
      COLOR

      Chulalongkorn University Uses Blackmagic Design

      August 25, 2020, 2:31 pm
      Blackmagic Design today announced that Chulalongkorn University, Thailand’s largest university, is using a full Blackmagic Design production and post workflow for its online and streaming programs. This includes the use of ATEM 2 M/E Production Studio 4K, ATEM Mini Pro and DaVinci Resolve Studio to produce and share content, which also encompasses sharing content with schools throughout Thailand as part of the country’s Education Technology Program.

      • Report
      • Share
      • Save

      Share this posting





    SUBMIT A LINK

    Newest From Aotg.com
    Stay Informed
    • Mail List

      E-Mail Newsletter

      Choose what Post News gets sent directly to your E-Mail, daily or weekly.

    • Apple iOS Mobile App

      AOTG App for iOS

      Get your post news on your favourite Apple device, when you want it where you want it.

    • Android Mobile App

      AOTG App for Android Devices

      Get your post news on your favourite Android device with the AOTG Android App.