Facilis, a leading international supplier of cost-effective, high performance shared
storage solutions for collaborative media production networks recently announced that
Local Hero, a creative boutique for independent filmmakers on the west side of Los
Angeles, is using Facilis TerraBlock for their most demanding 4K finishing and Netflix
Working strictly with file-based digital content from its beginnings in 2006, Local Hero
was instrumental in pushing the digital revolution forward in Hollywood to what it has
become today. With years of experience in file-based workflows, the team at Local
Hero routinely consults with clients on how to manage their data, which camera and
codec will bring them the look they want, all before the first frame is shot.
The company provides a wide range of post-production services, including dailies,
colour and digital intermediates, VFX, finishing and final mastering. Working primarily
on independent features and TV shows, last year Local Hero worked on three Oscar
nominated movies – Captain Fantastic, 20th Century Women, and Hell or
High Water. Like many clients, the Captain Fantastic production took full
advantage of Local Hero’s capabilities, choosing to do the editing, colour and DI, all of
the VFX, as well as the mastering and finishing.
“Since the beginning days of the Red camera and ARRI’s Alexa, we’ve been file-based.
It was a challenge 11 years ago, because some productions were still reluctant to
shoot digital,’ said Steve Bannerman, CEO of Local Hero. “As the technology and
techniques have continued to advance, we’ve been there every step of the way. It’s
what set us apart, and now with our breadth of experience in dailies, VFX, DI and
finishing, we continue to be leaders in all aspects of digital workflows.’
Recently, Local Hero finished 6 Balloons, a new 4K Netflix drama which is
soon to be released. The Local Hero team uses a Facilis 24D connected via 16GB Fibre
Channel to play demanding 4K DPX file sequences into their Resolve system for final
grading and finishing. “We needed a storage system that could play not just any 4K,
but 4K uncompressed DPX file sequences straight into our Resolve system for
finishing. We can’t afford any hiccups, and the Facilis 24D system performs flawlessly
on every production,’ says Bannerman.
Prior to having a Facilis system installed, the team regularly used local storage for
finishing workflows. Media had to be copied or physically moved during post-
production which could cause delays. “We use the Facilis system for its high
performance and speed during grading, but then it becomes a traditional storage unit
for us while the deliverables are being created,’ comments Bannerman.
When using their TerraBlock storage to finish in 4K, if the delivery is for Netflix, the
team creates an IMF (Interoperable Master Format) package using a Clipster 6
system. Since all the original 4K files are on the Facilis storage, it is easy to connect
the Clipster system to the Facilis Volume and selecting the finished sequence for
processing. The Clipster system then references the original 4K media when creating
the IMF package.
“For us, it’s a combination of price, reputation, and relationship. I’d been on the
technology side of the media & entertainment industry for over 20 years prior to Local
Hero, so I’ve known the folks at Facilis for a long time and have known their
reputation. Their price is very competitive, and the performance of the system is
outstanding. They’re very responsive when you need them, making them exactly the
kind of people you want to do business with,’ concludes Bannerman.