Tape-based workflows are rapidly becoming obsolete and broadcasters and
production houses are beginning to embrace various tapeless solutions. The post-
production department at Sasani Studios in Johannesburg is one such company, now
making full use of a tapeless system that operates in a shared environment, making
a project simultaneously accessible to several editors and other post-production
operatives at once.
These systems offer instant solutions to the many bottlenecks, communication
breakdowns, hold-ups and back-and-forth movements that had long been accepted
as necessary evils in post-production. The material is instantaneously available to
multiple users from various locations.
Sasani plays host to a large number of South Africa’s most popular soap operas,
including Scandal, Isidingo, 7de Laan Skeem Saam and Rhythm City. The workflow
on these shows essentially fuses production and post-production with a direct-to-
server recording system. As scenes are shot, they go straight into Sasani’s central
server, where editors can access them immediately. By cutting out onset data
wrangling and digitisation, this removes two steps in the process that are notorious
for being points of breakdown and error. Sasani also has the capacity for multi-
format ingest, working primarily with the DNXHD120 codec.
This tapeless workflow extends to final delivery as well, eliminating all
requirements for tapes and drives and allowing for direct digital delivery of finished
products to broadcasters.
In addition to the post-production services Sasani provides to the soaps being shot
on site, the facility also caters to a number of external clients, such as e.tv’s eKasi
Stories and the Nigerian series Tinsel. Its new studio is set to be up and running in
June and the post-production and technical solutions will be extended and tailored to
suit the new facility.
Sasani also recently started a skills development programme in which 11 learners
have thus far been enrolled. “We are very excited about this particular group of
learners as they already look set to take on the industry. I feel sure that some of
them will be industry leaders in the future,’ says Sasani CEO Eileen Sandrock.
Sasani operates Avid and FCP in its edit suites, making use of Adobe’s graphics and