Los Angeles-based post house FotoKem announced that its nextLAB system is now being represented in the Midwest region by Fletcher Camera & Lenses with offices in Chicago and Detroit. Built on FotoKem’s proprietary file-based workflow software, these mobile systems are integrated, portable units that bring a range of postproduction capabilities to the set. They are an extension of the company’s in-house technical R&D, designed to streamline the workflow from ingest to delivery and archive on set. Fletcher will rent and manage the deployment of nextLAB units in the busy production areas of the Midwest, primarily Illinois, Michigan and Ohio.
Fletcher will kick off this alliance with two introductory events on June 14 in Detroit. The first one is a non-technical “Producing in a Data World: Exploring Mobile Lab Services,” and the second is an intensive, hands-on training for local technicians.
FotoKem’s nextLAB system, which includes custom software in a mobile ruggedized enclosure was developed to service the industry’s transition to RAW and data-centric camera formats such as ARRI ALEXA, RED, Silicon Imaging and Canon DSLR. The software securely stores media, archives to LTO and provides quality control tools, offering access to metadata, audio syncing, color management and transcoding. It streamlines the dailies process and provides fast delivery to editorial and finishing.
Launched in 2009, nextLAB Mobile won the 2010 HPA award for creativity and innovation. It has been used on over 60 productions and is currently deployed on features and projects from Los Angeles to London.
Fletcher is a high-end camera and lens rental house based in the Midwest. Four years ago, Fletcher built its own mobile system, COSMoS, which addressed the needs for on-set data management and editorial services.
“Like FotoKem, Fletcher was among a very small number of companies that started to build the solutions for what was coming with data-centric workflows,” said Tom Fletcher, vice president of Fletcher Camera & Lenses. “When I saw where FotoKem had taken nextLAB, I immediately knew they had built something truly amazing. They get it. The nextLAB workflow improves efficiency for all types of projects-motion pictures, commercials and television.”
According to FotoKem’s nextLAB vice president and general manager Tom Vice, this is an ideal time to work with a company like Fletcher to support the demand and interest in file-based workflow in the Midwest.
“The team at Fletcher Camera have been longtime friends of FotoKem, and we have worked closely with Tom Fletcher over the years on a wide variety of projects,” said Vice. “As an expert who has been involved with the use of emerging and evolving camera technologies, he became an early leader in mobile systems supporting file-based workflows on location, and initially created a system of his own. All of us at FotoKem are very excited about this collaboration, and see it as a great way to have an industry leader represent us in the Midwest.”
Mobile systems, such as FotoKem’s nextLAB, are becoming an increasingly critical piece of the postproduction puzzle in an industry where acquisition tools and postproduction are uniquely and dynamically intertwined. More and more, postproduction begins on set with color management and the ability to ingest, view and sync new and varying camera technologies.
According to Megan Donnelly, director of digital mobile services for Fletcher Camera & Lenses, “We live in an interesting new world. The nextLAB system works intuitively with the way crew members work while also surpassing the expectations of creatives. The learning curve for clients is very seamless with FotoKem’s solution. We think customers will see it’s a must-have product once used.”
“We could not have found a better colleague to work with than Tom and the entire Fletcher Camera organization,” said Mike Brodersen, vice president of FotoKem. “They are well-respected and incredibly knowledgeable partners for us in the Midwest. We look forward to working with them to help put our system directly into the productions that need it.”