Post-production starts with pre-production
Post-production starts with pre-production decisions and have a direct impact on the expenses.
At the basic level I’m referring to:
- Delivery format – HD vs UHD
- How effect heavy is the piece
- Green screening and compositing
- Required stock or generated assets
- Location – permits and tent needs
- On screen talent and props
- Wardrobe stylists, makeup, etc
- Audio needs
Things that can help your editor and potentially reduce costs:
If you don’t have a specific need for 4K then stick to HD capture and delivery to potentially decrease production costs in camera options and to reduce extra hardware needs in post. 4K has significantly higher requirements to store and work with than HD and can equate to more time in the edit room. Another example is don’t shoot everything in high frame rates with Phantom cameras if you aren’t going to use it for slow motion. It can look awkward when conformed to the timeline and adds an extra process during the edit while adding to production and storage costs. A couple of small things that can be done even on small productions to help the editor include using proper slating and logging. This can provide much quicker batch syncing of audio and video and also add meta to clips like scene and take info and even add timecode to dslrs that other wise lack it (depending on specific tools). Always be sure to set date / time on production equipment before the shoot day and double check before cameras roll.
Lower budget projects often try to skimp on audio specialists and ACs, but unless you plan to not use any captured audio this is going to potentially have a drastic impact on your project. Slating (usually 2nd AC’s job) keeps everything in sync when you’re working with multiple camera angles and or external audio. Sound engineers and boom operators can also be huge assets to a production to acquire the cleanest audio possible and then cleanup and mix proper at the end.