Six divisions of Deluxe Entertainment Services Group, including Company 3, Deluxe 142, Deluxe Digital Cinema, Deluxe Laboratories, EFILM and Method Studios, recently came together to work on Seven Psychopaths providing Blueprint Pictures with a comprehensive post workflow. Deluxe leveraged its technology, global infrastructure and creative talent pool to provide everything from digital dailies and full DI, to extensive VFX and DCP deliverables.
Seven Psychopaths tells the story of a struggling screenwriter who inadvertently becomes entangled in the Los Angeles criminal underworld after his oddball friends kidnap a gangster’s beloved Shih Tzu. The new comedy directed by Martin McDonagh debuted at the Toronto Film Festival and opened in the U.S Oct. 12. The ensemble cast includes Colin Farrell, Sam Rockwell, Christopher Walken and Woody Harrelson.
“In total this project touched six different Deluxe businesses,” said Patrick Malone, head of DI for Company 3 London. “Our sister company EFILM completed the CinemaScan dailies process in Los Angeles and delivered the scans to the London team located in our 142 facility via Deluxe’s private network. Company 3 then completed the Online and picture grade in London and Deluxe Labs made the deliverables with Deluxe Digital London creating the DCP.”
The feature was colored by Adam Glasman at Company 3 who had worked with both Martin McDonagh and Ben Davis on previous projects. Glasman collaborated with McDonagh on In Bruges and with Davis on Wrath of the Titans and most recently on Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. “Having worked with both previously, I knew they have a preference for bold strong images,” said Glasman, “so we chose a saturated feel with increased contrast to reflect the heat and strong sun in the Mohave desert, continuing this technique into the night scenes.”
“There are a number of flashback sequences which required their own feel to isolate them from the rest of movie and aid story telling,” he added. “We achieved this by playing with saturation for individual colors and selectively stretching areas of the tone curves to increase grain. There are a number of different versions of this approach to reflect the flashbacks of different psychopath characters, separating them from each other.”
Method Studios in London, led by Drew Jones, worked on a total of 87 VFX shots over five months. VFX supervisor Rob Hodgson from the Method Studios’ Los Angeles office liaised with production and the DP during the shoot in L.A. This early collaboration through the global locations, aided the production with their shoot needs and also the London team in creating the VFX for the movie.
“The action of the knife against the skin, effect of the pressure from the blade and the amount of blood released were created digitally so it was possible to adjust that action according to taste. The main challenge faced on this movie was delivering a believable picture that was also more dramatic, and sometimes slightly more humorous, than real life,” said Melody Woodford head of production at Method. “It took many weeks of concept and FX development to achieve the correct balance that makes you gasp and laugh a little while keeping you firmly inside the story.”
According to Malone, “From a logistical perspective this picture benefited from a seamless inter-company workflow, coordinated by our experienced production teams across multiple locations and businesses within Deluxe.”