A successful Digital Production Challenge II comes to a close
by Vassilis Economou
- The tenth edition of the workshop focusing on production workflows took place in Athens, where four case studies were examined and eight new projects took part
After running for three-and-a-half days (28 November-1 December), the Digital Production Challenge II (DPC II) workshop wrapped its tenth edition, which took place in Athens and was focused on the challenges that professionals face in their production workflows.
Through four case studies, participants were able to study the possible ways of meeting specific production needs. In the first, Swedish producer Jessica Ask and cinematographer Peter Mokrosinski picked apart their new feature, The Adventures of Halvdan Viking, to present ways of streamlining the workflow and finding creative solutions on low-budget productions. It’s worth noting that Ask participated in the DPC with her project in 2016. Acclaimed sound designer Kostas Varympopiotis focused on the post-production sound workflow in the second workshop. The third case study was dedicated to the use of VFX in low-budget productions, where editors Alexandre Westphal and Alexandre Donot presented the French mockumentary Guy [+see also:
film profile] by Alex Lutz. Finally, introducing his documentary The Congo Tribunal [+see also:
film profile] as an example, German producer Arne Birkenstock discussed post-production strategies and workflow, as well as marketing strategies aimed at maximising audience engagement and impact.
Regarding the philosophy of DPC II, its project manager, Sophie Bourdon, underlined: “The idea of DPC II is to offer guidance, to spark curiosity, to make professionals understand that technical elements are changing all the time, and to give them the necessary tools to help them progress in their production workflow.”
Furthermore, eight new international projects that are at different stages of production and development – three hailing from Greece, and one each from Germany, Georgia, Romania, Sweden and Iraq – were represented at the DPC II and received an in-depth workflow analysis from cinematographer Philippe Ros, while one-to-one meetings were organised with producer Martin Hagemann, production technology specialist at Netflix Miga Bär, DIT and workflow supervisor Florian Rettich, and post-production expert and CEO at Noir Lumière Tommaso Vergallo.
As for her experience, line producer Georgiana Constantin, of Romania’s Saga Film, who was attending with her project Metamorphoses, commented: “Now I’m going to have a discussion with the director regarding the camera choice and the format he chose, and I think we could apply this [suggested] workflow… But I am also going to question the whole workflow that we usually use in my production company because now I have found out that there are things that could really be improved.”
On his impressions of the Athens edition of DPC II, Martin Hagemann stated: “I liked the Greek input a lot as well as the energy they put into their projects, despite the problems they still have with finances and despite the scarce funding they have here. With the case studies and with the projects, this event is constantly adding a very practical aspect to the workshop. We have experts who talk theory to people who have very practical problems, and that gives us a very strong structure.”
In 2018, more than 50 (post-)production professionals were in attendance from 14 countries. The DPC II workshop is a FOCAL Resource initiative presented with the support of FOCAL, the MEDIA sub-programme of Creative Europe and, in 2018, the Greek Film Centre, in collaboration with the Greek Film Archive and the Astor cinema.
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