Filmworkers Club recently provided HD color correction services for THE UNFORESEEN, director Laura Dunn new documentary highlighting the consequences of unrestrained urban sprawl. Colorist Oscar Oboza worked with Dunn and cinematographer Lee Daniel in setting the final look for the film, which made its world premiere at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival.
Executive produced by Terrence Malick and Robert Redford, THE UNFORESEEN is set in Dunn hometown, Austin, Texas, and tells the story of a local developer attempt to build a large-scale subdivision in pristine hill country, threatening a local aquifer. The struggle between growth and environmental interests is exemplified by Barton Springs, a natural spring that has served as the city swimming hole for decades and whose once crystal clear water is now virtually opaque.
‘The spring is a big reason why Austin was built where it was,’ noted Dunn, ‘and now we are destroying the very thing that brought us here in the first place.’
‘Austin is a microcosm of what is happening many places in this country and this film was made to inspire people to reflect on that,’ Dunn added.
Post producing THE UNFORESEEN was a challenge and not just due to the independent film modest budget. Daniel shot interview segments with an HDCAM and recorded much of the B-roll material on Super 16mm film. Additionally, the film makes considerable use of archival material, some dating back 30 years, that arrived on varying media.
Filmworkers Club initially transferred all of the film elements to HD video. After the film was edited, the post house performed a final color pass in a tape-to-tape environment to render a finished HD master.
Oboza role in the final color pass was to create a consistent look. ‘We used practically every format under the sun, save 70mm film,’ recalled Dunn. ‘Oscar and Lee did an amazing job, especially with the archival material. They were able to sharpen things?‚àö√ë‚àö√Üeven material from decades old VHS tape. They created a coherent look that wasn’st previously there.’
‘The key was to find a unifying theme,’ added Oboza. ‘It one thing to make the imagery look good; it another to create a look that supports the story. Once I understood where Laura and Lee wanted to take their film?‚àö√ë‚àö√Üthat where the color correction came in.’
As with many documentaries, material is not always shot under ideal conditions. A segment featuring Robert Redford at Barton Springs presented a challenge due to the weather. ‘I enjoyed taking that footage which initially wasn’t pleasing to the eye and making it more beautiful through color correction,’ Oboza said.
Access to high quality post production services is crucial to independent filmmakers, observed Dunn, especially in preparing films for theatrical display. ‘When I look back at that film,’ she said. ‘I feel a lot of gratitude toward Filmworkers Club.’
About Filmworkers Club
Filmworkers Club, Dallas, is located at 3400 Carlisle Street, Suite 105, Dallas, TX 75204. For more information, contact Executive Producer Rachael Turnage at (214) 754-9333 or visit www.filmworkers.com . Filmworkers Club also has locations in Chicago and Nashville.
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