“The conforming of the project should only begin once its edition is fully approved; otherwise, the processes will be extended and the budget may be affected. Before starting the conforming, it is important to specify the final aspect and resolution of the film, as well as to detail if any delivery will be made in a different aspect than agreed upon. If the edition of any reel is modified, new copies of work and assembly files with the change made will be necessary, and from its delivery, it will be determined how much that change will affect the established schedule for the film.”
“The original material must be delivered complete. It should be concentrated on the fewest possible number of disks, which must be compatible with Mac and ready to be viewed through a computer. The accepted slowest port will be USB3.1. All delivered material must be properly backed up and safeguarded.”
Organization of the original material
The media contained on the discs should be organized as follows:
- Root Directory: Project name (Capital letters without spaces or special characters)
- Second Directory Level: File Source
- In case the discs have slower speed ports or the media is not on optimal discs to connect to a computer for viewing, the conform time will increase exponentially.
- OCF – Original Camera Files
- WAV – Direct Sound Files
- LOOKS – Any Look file (.cdl, .ccc, .edl with CDLs)
- LUT – Any used LUT (.cube, .3dl)
- ALE – Any generated ALE, with all available fields, including CDL in the column if applicable
- PROXIES – Editorial transcode (Editorials and Review)
- REPORTS – All generated reports.
- Third Level of Directory: Shooting Day and Date.
- Example: Day_001_20170906
- Fourth level of directory: Camera Reel / Sound Roll
After this directory, the original structure of the cards must be maintained. The image below shows the proper order of the original film material.
Delivery of editing elements for conform.
It is important to consider that these elements will be used for editing purposes and color correction, therefore they have specific characteristics that make the workflow more efficient.
All elements will be delivered by reel, and in case of existing visual effects, a specific delivery will be made for that purpose. The elements necessary for conform are:
- Working Progress
- HD resolution.
- APR 422 format.
- Assembly Files, AAF, OMF, XML, and EDL.
- Characteristics of the assembly files of the film:
- Files with EDL (CMX3600), AAF, and XML formats are accepted.
- In the case of FCPXML files, please translate them to FCP 7 XML format since they are not readable by the system.
- Editing project (Avid, FC or Premier)
All conform files must refer to the File Clip Name.
In case of working with proxy files, make sure they connect perfectly with the original camera media and that it is all located on the disk or disks that are delivered for conforming.
If working with material without timecode, it is only necessary to deliver an AppleProRes 444 file at the highest possible resolution.
This file must be included and indicated in the delivery of the original media.
For ALL files delivered, speed variables included in the edit must be removed, as well as graphics and audio elements from the timeline. In the case of transitions, these must be removed by contemplating doing a trim to cover the necessary time between takes.
If there are visual effects that require more than one track to compose, they must be placed on the timeline one after the other, moving the film to the right. In such a way that they do not overlap in any case and it is totally clear which is the initial and final frame of each track needed for the constitution of the VFX.
It is preferable to deliver more than one format, that will reduce the possibility of requesting editor help later in case of any problem.
It is useful to include the editing project, with the final sequence marked. – Characteristics of movie work copies
Work copies will be delivered by roll, being an ACCURATE copy of the assembly file. They must have an academic slate that contains the name of the movie, creation date, name of the assembly file to which they belong, roll and version.
Throughout the copy, the recorder and source timecode, clip name, camera, version number, roll, and name of the VFX must be burned into the image. The file must contain audio in sync.
It is necessary to do this on the general CDT and deliver a VFX CDT per roll with the same indications.
Simplify the timeline
Most interchange formats unfortunately can’t handle much complexity in the timeline, and so we need to simplify the timeline down to the most basic setup—a
series of clips, one after another—before we export.
Nearly all editors edit with a multi-track timeline, or else FCP X’s magnetic timeline. In either case, it’s common to have a dozen or more different layers of video. Imagine that the different video clips were stacked on top of each other. Whichever one is on top is the one that will be seen.
In order to prep for the conform, the film must be collapsed down to a single track.
We also have to remove most (if not all) of the effects and transitions on our clips, since those effects and transitions will probably not translate to the software used for color and finishing. The finishing artist will have to recreate each one in the new software. This is another reason why it was important to export out a reference video, because the finishing artist will refer closely to that video file in order to recreate all of the effects and transitions that the editors used.
Delivery of conform elements for visual effects purposes.
In addition to the aforementioned elements, in case the film contains visual effects, assembly files and working copies with the same characteristics as those necessary for the film conform must be generated.
- Preparation of the editing project for the export of assembly files for VFX It is important that for this delivery, a new sequence is edited that only contains the necessary material for the VFX production, and that all necessary tracks are arranged linearly towards the right in the timeline. This is to ensure that they do not overlap in any way and that it is completely clear which is the initial and final frame of each track needed for the constitution of the VFX.
- Characteristics of working copies for visual effects The working copies will be delivered by reel, being an exact copy of the assembly file. They must have an academic slate that includes the movie name, creation date, name of the assembly file to which they belong, reel, and version. The working copy must have the watermark “VFX.” In addition, the recorder and source timecode, clip name, camera, version number, reel, and VFX name must be marked. If “Retime” and/or “Resize” are applied, it must be indicated in text and percentage. It is important to consider that the VFX working copies will be the reference for the artists, so all the information provided through them will be useful. In case there are VFX where the artist needs to know specific data that cannot be seen with the linear arrangement of the tracks, a still image composed of 5 seconds must be included.
Visual Effects Nomenclature
Depending on the workflow, the name of each effect will be given by Óxido or the client. In any case, a consecutive order in the nomenclature must be respected throughout the entire film, the name should refer to what will be done in the VFX and will be accompanied by three numbers that will carry the sequence.
In the event of there being more than one track for a single VFX, the name should be the same, adding a letter P for Plate.
Example: RTC_100 RTC_100_P
Never name both tracks with exactly the same name.
This nomenclature is the one that will be burned into the CDT and will be used to identify the VFX throughout the entire film process.
If new effects are to be added and the conform process has already started, it is mandatory that the new effects have completely different names from the existing ones so that their inclusion does not affect the nomenclature of the first VFX in any way.