Hot off the back of being awarded the prestigious AICE color grading award, Fergus McCall delves deep into some of his personal highlights of 2013 and the ever evolving telecine environment.
What was it like to win the AICE color grading award?
About time I won something… But seriously, very happy and was pleased that all the nominations were NY based. I've always believed that local competition 'hot-houses' great work.
How has Telecine evolved in your time at The Mill?
It's changed massively, in terms of the toolsets and image capture systems, but the basic m.o. remains the same, to get the best of the DP and directors vision and maybe bring a little extra to the table.
What have been your favourite projects this year?
Funnily enough I've just started working on a new Hennessy project that I think is going to be a bit special.
Has any grading from elsewhere than commercials caught your eye recently?
I'm really pleased to see that the music video has had something of a renaissance, and as it used to be back in the day, it's an opportunity to experiment with looks and style and for young DP's and colorists to get experimental and maybe push the boundaries back a bit. I don't like it however when looks are used just for the sake of it as they can 'try a bit too hard'. The TV work coming out of the States at the moment is exceptional, but nothing stands out in terms of color correction, apart from maybe Mad Men. The most interesting stuff I've seen lately are some brand film/short film that Damo (Damien Van Der Cruyssen - NY Co-Head of Telecine) is color correcting for Free People, a boutique women's fashion outlet. It blurs the line between advertising and film narrative and is beautifully shot and has some really interesting color correction techniques used in it. Really good stuff.
What upcoming talent do you have your eye on in the Telecine world?
I've always highly rated the young guys coming out of MPC London, but that said The Mill's roster is really strong at the moment.
What inspires you?
Malt whisky, valve amplification and the Old Masters.
Are you a morning person?
From midnight to 2am I'm generally pretty good company, but by the time the milkman's delivering his wares I'm best tucked up in bed.
What magazines/newspapers/blogs do you subscribe to?
Viz. It's quality. Period.