Wheelhouse spinning 360-degrees!

This Spring saw the debut of a new division here at Wheelhouse Creative — 360-degree video production!

IMG_0202With 360-degree video, multiple GoPro cameras record simultaneously from different vantage points, covering a full 360 degree layout. Once these recordings are stitched together through digital software, viewers can explore from the center of a 360º world.

In April and May, Wheelhouse Creative created two major 360-degree VR videos for VOGUE: the red carpet for the Tribeca Film Festival Opening Night Film and the star-studded red carpet for the famed “First Monday In May” Met Gala!

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Both were incredible experiences that taught us a ton about this new technology and the future of immersive cinema.

See these 360-degree videos on the links below

Met Gala Red Carpet

Tribeca Film Fest Red Carpet

To experience 360 video in all its glory, viewers don’t need to wear a virtual reality head-set. Just click on that link and explore the video space directly in Facebook.

2016-04-13 18.27.27The Met Gala 360-video garnered over 6,000 views in under an hour and should soon surpass 100k views. The video offers viewers the unique experience of participating in Met Gala’s red carpet event, gaining an up-close encounter with some of the biggest A-list celebrities, including Taylor Swift, Amy Schumer, Naomi Watts, Stephen Colbert, the Olsen Twins, Claire Danes, and Beyonce.

Wheelhouse Creative Executive Director Rob Lyons and Head Of Post-Production Zac Castellano discussed the challenges of 360-degree production and Wheelhouse’s entry into this exciting new field.

What do you hope viewers will get from 360 video footage that they won’t get from traditional footage?

Rob: The amazing thing about this technology is that it puts the viewer right in the environment. At the Met Gala, we were able to put the camera right on the carpet. That is a view that very few people are able to see, and with this technology we can put you right there in the middle of things.  It’s an amazing vantage point.

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What are some challenges with 360 video production?

Rob: Shooting is fairly easy, but the GoPro cameras have some serious restrictions. The real challenge becomes in post production, stitching together 7 or 10 cameras is not an easy feat.

Zac: One of the biggest challenges of 360 video is the disparity between the images from each camera. The concept of parallax comes into play here, where the distance of an object from the camera affects where the “stitching point” between cameras should be. Many times, you’re forced to prioritize between stitching the foreground or background in certain points of your video.

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Senior Creative Ze’ev Gilad looks on as Zac works on the stitching

Rob: Another challenge is the time it takes to create a video. Just viewing all of the footage is complicated, because you have to multiply the running time by however many cameras you are using. The stitching process requires a ton of CPU processing power and render times are extremely long.

What events will/could Wheelhouse cover in the future?

Rob: We’re game for anything – looking forward to doing some more live events, behind the scenes on a few films, hopefully some concerts, and maybe we’ll go into space!

Wheelhouse welcomes our new star senior editor – Sheryl Haley!


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This week we’re profiling Sheryl Haley, Wheelhouse’s new senior editor. A twenty-year veteran of some of the biggest vendors in the trailer business, Sheryl joined Team Wheelhouse with a star-studded resume, having worked on campaigns such as “Silver Linings Playbook”, “Inception” and “The Royal Tenenbaums”. Now she’s bringing some of that vast experience and know-how to Wheelhouse’s indie clients.

What do you do at Wheelhouse?

I’m a senior editor and producer.  I’m working day-to-day on all of our trailer campaigns.

You’ve been an editor for a long time and have an extensive background. Tell us a little about your history and how you got started.

I got my start at Aspect Ratio in LA – I wasn’t having much luck finding my niche in the film industry, but when I found trailers, I finally found a home. I traveled from Aspect Ratio to Giaronomo Productions in NY (following in Jeremy’s footsteps). I stayed there for many years and credit them for making me the editor I am today. After that I went back to LA to work for Trailer Park. Soon after, I was sought-after by some of the biggest and most innovative trailer houses in the industry.

I started freelancing for Wheelhouse a year ago and found a new lease on a job that I’ve been doing a LONG time and was feeling stale for me.  They reignited my passion for the craft. I feel in sync with the Wheelhouse vision and I connect with the films we work on. I have the utmost respect for Jeremy and Rob and their commitment to quality.

Editing is a massive undertaking – long hours, exacting detail. What’s your process like?

Editing is the only place I feel completely at home. It’s what I know best when other things in life feel uncertain. I like to watch a film as a viewer before an editor, I let ideas flow. Then I determine which ones will actually work and go from there.   Sometimes it’s a piece of music that inspires me or a particular scene I connect to.  Sometimes it’s simply an emotion.

Trends in trailers seem to come and go. How have you seen styles change?

Styles change. Particular devices become popular, but the one thing that never changes is the need for good storytelling and the need for translation of a director’s vision into a short form that will best represent the film.  

What advice would you give an up and coming editor?

Be tenacious. Prepare to work all night long if need be. Put in the hours. Find a mentor.  And if you aren’t passionate about it, you won’t succeed.

Wheelhouse Profile: Zac – our ace post supervisor!

 

This month we’re profiling Zac Castellano, Wheelhouse’s newest Assistant Editor and post-production supervisor. After starting his career at Showtime, Zac’s joined Team Wheelhouse as a specialized uber-tech who’s all about getting the final product perfect!

Tell us a little aboIMG_6151ut you and your background. How’d you get your start?

I grew up here in New York. I got my start working in television at Showtime as a media manager. I’ve also worked in music production, composition and mixing.

What do you do at Wheelhouse?

I’m an Assistant Editor at Wheelhouse. I’m building on a lot of the things I learned at Showtime, but doing a lot more “post-post” work, so to speak. I handle trailer finishes, QC, and final delivery. There’s awesome creative work for me here too – in the time I’ve been here I’ve already been given an opportunity to cut a short film that Wheelhouse is involved with.

What was your experience like at Showtime?

I had several responsibilities in their post-production department, where I was in charge of organizing all media before it was made available to the editors and producers to cut with. This included show dailies, cast interviews, and behind the scenes footage. I also handled the daily archival and media management of all our projects which were backed up to a project server, and backed up again to a RAID every night. Our editors used Final Cut, Premiere and Avid, so I was constantly working in all three platforms while performing my work. I learned a ton about project workflow, how to manage terabytes of footage, encoding and quality control.

What’s your approach to maintaining quality control in your work, and how has your past experience prepared you for Wheelhouse?

Staying extremely organized in my projects is crucial. Organization also helps my workflow, and gives me time to focus on the little details that need more careful attention.

Showtime’s margin for error was very low, which really helped me at Wheelhouse and has strengthened my attention to detail as an editor. During QC, you’ve got to watch something down maybe 10-15 times throughout the process. It can get repetitive but you can’t make the same mistake twice. It’s too important.

What’s it like going from a large broadcast network to a specialized vendor like Wheelhouse?

The vibe in our office here is great. Where Showtime was more of a traditional corporate setting, Wheelhouse is more of an open floor. I’m involved in the business and creative discussions, and I get a full view of how a company like ours runs day-to-day.

Okay, one more thing: Give us a fun fact.

The “bald eagle” sound from films and TV is actually the cry of a red-tailed hawk. Bald eagles don’t sound cool at all.

Magician: The Astonishing Life & Work of Orson Welles Available on DVD

Chuck Workman’s documentary, Magician: The Astonishing Life & Work of Orson Welles is a look into the remarkable genius of the filmmaker and star.  Orson Welles’s life was magical: a musical prodigy at age 10, a director of Shakespeare at 14, a painter at 16, a star of stage and radio at 20, romances with some of the most beautiful women in the world, including Rita Hayworth. His work was similarly extraordinary, most notably Citizen Kane, (considered by many to be the most important movie ever made), created by Welles when he was only 25.

In collaboration with Cohen Media Group’s Charles S. Cohen and Calliope Films, Wheelhouse Creative was proud to serve as one of the production facilities for this highly-regarded documentary.  This is Wheelhouse Creative’s second collaboration with Chuck Workman, following What Is Cinema? in 2013.

In addition to creating the trailer, Wheelhouse cinematographer Michael Lisnet shot interviews for the film including Chris Welles, Elvis Mitchell and Julie Taymor. Wheelhouse animation and title designers Ze’ev Gilad and Beverly Rosenzweig’s work can also be seen in the film in the 3D animation and lower third design, respectively.

Continue reading for interviews with the Wheelhouse team, an inside look at creating the trailer and more.

Magician: The Astonishing Life & Work of Orson Welles is available on Blu-Ray and DVD from Amazon.  More information on the  film can be found on Cohen Media Group‘s website.

SlingShot: An Interview with Director Paul Lazarus

SlingShot is a feature documentary following famed inventor Dean Kamen’s journey into solving the world’s water crisis with his revolutionary water distillation machine. It was released in 2014 and is director Paul Lazarus’ first documentary feature.  Wheelhouse was thrilled to work with Paul on the trailer for this engaging documentary.

Paul Lazarus is a director, writer and producer based in Los Angeles.   He has directed a diverse range of projects in theater, television and film – his work in primetime TV series includes:  “Ugly Betty,”  “Pretty Little Liars,” “Melrose Place” and “Friends.”

Continue reading for our full interview with Paul.

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Wheelhouse Teams Up with Doc NYC

The fifth year of America’s largest documentary festival is about to start up this November 13th in Manhattan. This year over 100 different films are being played throughout the city at IFC Center, SVA Theatre, and Bow Tie Chelsea Cinemas.

Wheelhouse partnered with the festival to create a trailer that would give insight to some of the most anticipated films and to showcase the variety of special guest and panels that will be taking place. We’re excited to be participating not only with the people of DOC NYC but also with the filmmakers in the festival.

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Wheelhouse Profile: Karen Altman, Composer of Magical Universe

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This month we’re profiling Karen Altman in honor of the theatrical release of Magical Universe.

Karen Altman is a talented composer from Virginia who has teamed up with Wheelhouse Creative’s Jeremy Workman to compose an original film score for his documentary, Magical Universe. Not unlike the film, Karen’s music is both enchanting and mesmerizing. In an interview with Karen, we got a glimpse into the creative mind behind the music.

Click below to read the full interview!

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