In an extensive two-part interview on FCP.co, Focus directors Glenn Ficarra and John Requa and editor Jan Kovac detail their workflow cutting the major motion picture using Apple Final Cut Pro X.
“We are all visual people and the brain absorbs a lot of information that goes directly into the subconscious. Clutter on the page or clutter in the UI will take away from your creative thoughts, I think that’s why people are saying it is fun to cut again,” says Kovac. “The simplicity of FCP X is deceiving, you discover the depth of it, but it still has all the ease of use.”
After first being an FCP X skeptic, Ficarra explains what made him come around to the radically redesigned software. “When we noticed that it was designed to cut digital video from the ground up, not just made to emulate the film experience, it was really appealing,” he says. “And then when we found how easy it was, it was amazing, I could cut at least twice as fast if not three times as fast on Final Cut Pro X as I could on Avid. There was so much less thinking and less clicking than that flatbed emulation.”
“We shot this movie with alternative versions of many scenes. If we ever felt we were losing the audience and they weren’t buying the ‘con’ we’re spinning at that time, we needed to have options to reinforce it or add comedy and tone,” Requa adds. “We basically had four movies, we had to work fast, cut a lot of versions and preview a lot of versions to work out what worked the best. In fact one night we previewed two different versions in cinemas next door to each other.”
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