Constantine Makris: Image Control & Post Production

From American Cinematographer, Legal Eagle by Eric Rudolph (October 1998)

While the show is closely identified with its New York setting and production base, it is produced by Universal Television, which is based in Los Angeles. This means that postproduction is done 3,000 miles away. The long-distance marriage has created some problems that Makris has recently taken steps to solve.

"They literally take our unprocessed 35mm negative and put it on a plane to Deluxe in Los Angeles! The postproduction staff began getting a bit creative, changing things I'd done. The squad room walls are green — not blue, as they have appeared to be in some shows. If I say an actor should have an orange half-shadow on his face, well, he should, because I'm the person being paid to light this show. Sometimes I want to warm up a scene with a one-quarter CTO. But when I see the show, the scene is not warm — it's white. For that reason, I started using a 1/2 CTO where I previously might have used a 1/4... Steve Garfinkle, our Kodak rep, suggested using their Grey Card Plus system. Up to that point, I had only been giving post a gray scale. With Kodak's system, with its calibration of the telecine, the colorists' job is to simply match his copy of the Grey Card Plus card to the card we film. If they do that, the show should look the way it was intended to when it reaches the home screen."

- Constantine Makris, ASC

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