Hollywood Toby 

I am in Hollywood, I'm the Panasonic building, I'm seeing the HD Masters of "The Utopian Society". No one is more surprised that these guys are finally doing the online than I. Click for more... AND PHOTOS. 


Last weekend I revisited an old friend and an old nemesis. The old friend was Eric Petersen (we don't see each other much anymore - he lives in LA, I live in a bunker), the old nemesis was "The Utopian Society".

The Utopian Society is a feature film that I edited 2 years ago. I'll skim some details and just say that it was a rough breakout, I was dumped for another editor.

Two years pass. The film is shown at 35 film festivals, and wins awards at 15 of them (none for best editing). Now they need to complete the online edit. Eric had to reverse engineer the EDL (edit decision list) because one of the subsequent editors had screwed up my careful file management. Yes the word careful rarely appears with relation to me, but this is my recollection, so sue me.

Eric re-captured all the footage and then went thru the film (basically this was his last chance to change tweak or alter the movie before it was 'locked').

On Sunday I sat down and watched the film again. Things were different, I could see a cut that I know I would not have made, not enough space after a line of dialogue, or just something plain wrong. It was wierd, like walking thru your house but you know someone else has been there. So Eric and I undid a lot of the stuff these 'interlopers' had done, and made a few refinements along the way.

So today I'm in Hollywood watching them assemble the film to that EDL. On some levels it is very rewarding, however I would be really happy if the director sack'd up and admitted that taking the film was a mistake and that me coming in (for free) to help fix it was a class act. It's almost enough for me that I know, but it would be nice to hear it from hie 'dirty hole'.

I had written the film off, gone past it and on to better (actually just other) things. But Eric rermained true to the project and I couldn't help that I owed it to him to take part. And I should confess that editing narrative film is a lot more stimulating than slapping a training video for a car computer or a dune-buggy commercial together.

On the big screen (see photo) the image looks way better than it ever did when I was editing it on a quarter of a monitor display and a 13" Broksonic TV. Suddenly it looks real.

Suddenly, I'm glad I came.

Wednesday November 11th, 2004 

Posted: Wed - November 10, 2004 at 04:02 PM       @ toby