Annapurna Studios Digital Lab adds Hollywood Appeal for Baahubali
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12 July 2015

SS Rajamouli’s Baahubali was one of the most anticipated films of 2015. It broke new technological boundaries and presented many creative challenges to its editor and DOP KK Senthil Kumar who spent hundreds of man hours over a period of 24 months.

Much like the Hollywood films, the filmmakers (digital intermediate) DI partner Annapurna employed as many as technicians on the project. It is the first ever DI process ever attempted in India in the scale of Hollywood films.

After watching the film Actor Nagarjuna Akkineni said ‘Spectacular visuals and dreams come alive in BAAHUBALI !! we salute you Rajamouli.”

“It was a pioneering effort says CV Rao, Head of DI at Annapurna Studios said. For the First Time in India, we have implemented ACES work flow. We have started this project 2 years ago and did several researches on workflows which is best suit in the long run and finally locked for ACES. It gives lots of freedom and controls for VFX artist to play around within the footage.

Explaining about the role of DI, C V Rao said DI is all about shooting digitally and getting that content into editing, color, VFX and audio in the most efficient way. To begin with all live shots initially reach the DI suit, we then check them thoroughly with all brightness, and contrast levels thereafter deliver the right formats to VFX team. Later the final edited picture along with VFX shots are blended together to enhance the look and mood of the film.

Digital Color Correction (popularly known as DI) has become a very essential and prominent part of Film making today.Colorist, workflow and equipment are important to deliver the world class product says DOP K K Senthil Kumar of the film. Annapurna offers a pool of highly talented manpower and sophisticated equipment that met our unprecedented high quality needs.

“The best part of Annapurna Studios is the dedicated led by colourist Shiva Kumar BVR to CV Rao and their DI team that worked relentlessly to help us achieve the top possible quality. The kind of pressure under which the DI of BAAHUBALI happened is Unbelievable. I am very satisfied with the quality, service and support they have given us for the film, DOP Says.
To get Baahubali out on such an aggressive schedule, Annapurna leaned hard on a post production infrastructure built additional DI suites including several conforming stations. In addition, an Apace active backup solution with 400 TB of storage was also installed, which could immediately switch over if ISIS failed.

The editorial team – headed up by C V Rao and coloring expert Shiva Kumar BVR consisted of supporting colorists, conformists, & visual effects artists.

To meet the film makers expectations we brought in a completely new Baselight systems dedicated to the Baahubali project CV Rao added. Baahubali is a heavy visual effects production and that made the challenge for DI team even more intense and we are glad that we could complement the film’s theatrical and storytelling experience.

Few lines about ACES

Academy Color Encoding System (ACES) is a color image encoding system proposed by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences that will allow for a fully encompassing color accurate workflow, with "seamless interchange of high quality motion picture images regardless of source"

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