London, June 2012 – 'World's Toughest Drive' from Raw TV closely follows the extraordinary expedition of three adventurers as they attempt to break the World Record for the fastest drive to the South Pole. Posted by Prime Focus, and airing on Discovery on Thursday 21st June at 9.30pm, it provides an enthralling insight into this daring journey, and the tough challenges the explorers faced.
With no possibility of a camera crew keeping up with 'Polar', their state-of-the-art vehicle, it was down to the three-strong expedition team to capture all the footage. They were given one Sony NX70 camera and four Vio POV HD cameras, which were welded to the vehicle with all of the cameras constantly filming the action.
Once the team returned, the 5TB of rushes were delivered to Prime Focus' Broadcast facility where a quick turnaround was needed with the ingesting of the data so that post production could start on schedule.
Prime Focus' Head of Avid, James Cregeen worked closely with Head of Operations, Kate Robson to devise the bespoke tapeless workflow that was used during post. "Using our near-line storage for the networking of the native camera material we were able to ingest a large amount of data in a short space of time whilst maintaining file path and metadata integrity throughout the post production workflow" said James. "It also provided the clients in the edit suite access to all 5TB of native camera material simultaneous with the offline resolution footage, in order to view, log, QC and request any further ingesting as the offline edit took place."
Extensive testing was done on the VIO camera to devise the most suitable workflow for a camera that doesn't shoot true 25fps. James added, "Without the initial testing of the VIO camera and cooperation between the production team, project management team and the network and infrastructure here at Prime Focus, this smooth transition from shoot to the online and grade would not have been possible, given the timescale we were working to."
Kevin Horsewood, Televisual Magazine's Number 1 ranked Film/TV Colourist, provided the grade on 'World's Toughest Drive' and discovered that the project offered up a unique set of challenges. "The cameras were selected specifically because they could cope with the most extreme conditions on the planet" said Kevin. "In the grade, I had to match the look from these cameras, balancing and correcting the exposure. Because of the harsh conditions, I used shapes and vignettes to pick out the adventurers against the snow and I had to control strong highlights coming from snow glare, to make sure that detail wasn't lost."
The online editor was Alex Pickering, while Senior Dubbing Mixer, Phitz Hearne completed the audio work. Post production was overseen at Prime Focus by Head of Production Nicola Whitehead.
Project: World's Toughest Drive
Production Company: Raw TV
Head of Production: Piers Vellacott
Executive Producer: Louise Norman
Series Producer / Director: Sophie Todd
Production Manager: Lucy Sheffield