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Going Global on ’24: Live Another Day’: The Inner Workings of Encore’s International Workflow

For the FOX series event "24: Live Another Day," Encore provided on-site dailies and postproduction services for all 12 episodes.

Encore provided on-site dailies and postproduction services for all 12 episodes of the FOX “series event” 24: Live Another Day. The show was shot in London, predominantly with ARRI Alexa cameras recording Log C ProRes 422 (HQ). Several AVCHD and GoPro cameras captured pickup shots. Encore’s local office managed the dailies workflow, then piped footage back to Encore Hollywood for online editing, coloring and finishing work.

Each day’s footage was delivered to Encore London on drives containing three to six hours of content. Files were ingested and processed with Rec. 709 LUT color applied initially using Colorfront On-Set Dailies. After footage was synced and metadata entered, the team rendered four deliverables formats: Avid DNxHD 36 for editorial, ISO DVD for production, QuickTime for DP Jeffrey Mygatt’s iPad reviews, and MP4 files, which were uploaded to the DAX Platform for collaborative review.

Jack (Kiefer Sutherland) hunts Cheng
Photo by Chris Raphael/FOX.

The DNxHD 36 material was copied to shuttle drives and delivered to editorial, then pushed to Encore Hollywood via Aspera Point-to-Point high-speed data transfer software. Original source material was archived to LTO-5 tapes and shipped to Encore Hollywood.

After receiving the offline edit, Encore senior editor Heydar Adel conformed episodes in Avid Symphony, creating a cut with high-resolution source footage. He then added secondary fixes and effects like gun muzzle flashes using Adobe After Effects and integrated shots from the VFX department.

Content was then routed to Encore senior colorist Kevin Kirwan for grading on a Linux-based Blackmagic DaVinci Resolve system. Having viewed a selection of previous episodes at the outset of the project, Kirwan, with additional guidance from Mygatt, maintained the show’s established stylized look. Unlike more traditional programs where a colorist can ripple a change through a scene, the show’s many split-screens required Kirwan to color the paneled shots cut by cut.

Mary Lynn Rajskub as Chloe

Photo by Chris Raphael/FOX

At the end of each session, files were sent to London for notes from Mygatt and the producers. Both Kirwan and Mygatt use professionally calibrated consumer-grade Panasonic plasma televisions for monitoring at 1080p. Once color correction was completed, a process that takes Kirwan on average 12 to 13 hours, the episode was sent back to Adel to add final titles and graphics, including the show’s iconic countdown clock.

Encore London also handled ADR on the series, primarily using Pro Tools HD. Capitalizing on Encore’s global connectivity, associate producer Ashley Contino and sound editor Pembrooke Andrews were able to supervise recording sessions in London from Los Angeles using a combination of ISDN, Source-Connect, phone patch and Skype. Tailoring the microphone configuration to capture the high-octane action and explosive nature of the 24 series, an Electro-Voice RE20 helped catch the energetic performances that define the show.

“24 is an iconic show with a worldwide following,” says Encore executive vice president Bill Romeo, “so it’s fitting that postproduction for the new series event spans the globe.”