Colorist Allie Ames performs grading for the virtually
all-women production.

NEW
YORK— Released
this month by IFC Films, Band Aid
marks the directorial debut of Zoe Lister-Jones, best known for her acting
roles on Life in Pieces and New Girl. The film has been earning rave
reviews for its engaging story of a couple who turn to songwriting to work out
their marital difficulties. It has also generated lots of buzz for
Lister-Jones’s unique decision to employ women in all key production and
post-production crew positions. That included Colorist Allie Ames from
Technicolor PostWorks New York, who worked with the director and
Cinematographer Hillary Spera through editorial conforming and final color
grading.
Shot in Los
Angeles, Band Aid captures both the
city’s sun-drenched streets and dimly-lit clubs in a fresh natural manner.
Spera, who primarily worked hand-held, says the visual style was heavily
influenced by slice-of-life films of the ‘70s, citing the Woody Allen classic Husbands and Wives. “Films of that era
have a tangibility; things feel very organic,” she explains. “We went for
something similar where the action feels improvised, even though it’s scripted,
and we’re just ‘there’ with the camera.”

 “Zoe really wanted it to be hand-held, so the
actors had space and a chance to roam,” she adds.  “We’re in their home and a part of their
world.”
That
naturalism was further refined during grading sessions at Technicolor
PostWorks. “The film has a soft, filmic vibe,” says Ames. “It’s very Southern
California: beautiful skin tones, golden light, slightly lifted blacks. It’s
lush. Hillary did a beautiful job. The material looked wonderful coming out of
the camera, so it was fun to play with.”
Spera says
the grading sessions were very collaborative. She and Ames quickly developed a
rapport and reacted similarly to the material. “Allie understood where we
wanted to go from our initial talk,” Spera recalls. “We shot with two cameras
and vintage lenses, so there was a lot to do in color to make it uniform.
Mostly, we wanted to be subtle with color, and Allie got that, but at times we
needed to go for more color or a stylized look, and she got that too. It’s hard
to make the color feel organic with natural light, and Allie really achieved
that beautifully”
As an
example of the latter, Spera points to a montage of nightclub scenes where
lighting was used to distinguish different performances. “There are a lot of
color shifts, and we worked to make each one feel different,” she observes. “We
went through that sequence with a fine-toothed comb because it really needed to
say something narratively.”
Both Spera
and Ames said that they found it inspiring to work on a project driven by
women. “Zoe had the vision to hire an all-woman crew, but once we crewed up, it
felt like any other project, except in its spirit of collaboration,” Spera
says. “Everyone’s voice and ideas were considered and we worked together like a
well-oiled machine. At every turn, it was the best it could be.”
“Camera,
electrical, sound and editorial…they were all women,” adds Ames. “I’ve had the
benefit of working with amazing women directors before, but this was unique and
very exciting. It was a real girl power show.”
About Technicolor PostWorks New York
Technicolor PostWorks New York is the East Coast’s most comprehensive
digital motion picture and post-production facility, employing an exceptional
team of creative artists, engineers and project managers to serve our clients
through the film and TV finishing process.
Technicolor PostWorks New York offers one complete source for every
post requirement, including in-context digital dailies, film imaging and
restoration, collaborative non-linear editorial and HD/UHD broadcast finishing,
4K digital cinema, global content lifecycle support, and comprehensive film and
TV sound services on nine mix stages.
For more information, visit http://www.technicolorpwny.com
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