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Technicolor – PostWorks New York Explores the Colors of Meth Addiction


Technicolor – PostWorks New York provided postproduction services for a new series of public service announcements that vividly evoke the dangers that methamphetamines pose for teens.

The four spots were directed by Darren Aronofsky for the Meth Project and digital agency Organic, San Francisco, and center on the real-life consequences of addiction. In one spot, a teen looks on in horror as his brother ransacks his bedroom in search of money to buy drugs. The other spots feature a teen who abandons a friend in an emergency room to get high, a girl who sells sex for drugs, and a mother who discovers her addicted daughter after a suicide attempt. The spots direct viewers to the Meth Project’s website, MethProject.org.

Final color grading for the PSAs was performed at Technicolor – PostWorks New York by colorist Tim Stipan, whose previous collaborations with Aronofsky include the films Black Swan and The Wrestler. The spots, which were shot on 16mm film, were given stylized color treatments to suggest the horror and unreality of the addict’s world. “We gave them a grungy, desaturated look—but we kept the skin tones looking nice,” said Stipan. “They are beautiful in their own way.”

Stipan added that shooting the spots on 16mm film was an inspired choice as the graininess of the imagery helped to accentuate the desperation of the scenarios. “It’s not a pretty situation when kids are addicted to crystal meth,” he said.

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