CAS, Todd-AO, Cinesite make moves

The Cinema Audio Society opened the submissions process for the CAS Awards with a big change: scoring mixers will be added to the mix in three categories: motion pictures, television movie or miniseries, and DVD original programming. In making this change, said CAS President David E. Fluhr, “I am delighted that the CAS Board is beginning the expansion of our nominee base… Recognizing all mixers who contribute to an outstanding achievement in sound mixing is a long-time goal of the CAS, and we will continue moving forward.” The 48th annual CAS Awards nominees will be announced on January 19 and the CAS Awards will be held February 18, at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles.

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Todd-AO has completed a technical overhaul of ADR stage 5 at its Hollywood studios. One of the largest facilities of its type in Hollywood, the ADR stage has been equipped with a new Pro Tools workstation, a Soundmaster ION operating environment and a Christie HD playback system. The new integration provides the stage with an all-digital infrastructure resulting in enhanced quality and efficiency for voice recording. The Soundmaster ION will be used to synchronize the Pro Tools system with a separate recording system, microphones, remote feeds, samplers, and a boom recorder used for back-up.

“We have created a state-of-the-art recording facility that offers all functionality that producers and talent expect from a world-class ADR room,” said Bill Johnston, senior veep of engineering at CSS Studios, Todd-AO’s parent company. “Our aim is to make ADR as quick and seamless as possible.”

Johnston adds that the new HD video system has the ability to playback video in virtually any format, eliminating transcoding delays. “It makes a world of difference,” observed Todd-AO ADR Mixer Ron Bedrosian. “The new technology provides increased flexibility so that we can better meet the evolving needs of our clients.”

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Addressing the scarcity of skilled programmers entering the visual effects field, London vfx house Cinesite’s Inspire internship program now includes a separate technical effects track that specifically targets grads with an interest in computer programming or technical effects. “We’ve had great success over the past two years finding talented graduates to fill our traditional visual effects internship, but we’ve noticed that our industry is severely lacking young talented computer programmers,” said Antony Hunt, managing director of Cinesite. “With this new strand we’re aiming to attract graduates with science degrees and educate them on how they can build a career in this exciting world-class industry.”

The technical effects internship will run in conjunction with the visual effects internship. Both placements are paid positions and will run for six weeks in the summer of 2012. The technical effects strand is targeting people with interests in writing shaders and programming for pipelines, as well as aspiring effects TDs. The vfx track targets people with interests in digital matte painting, animation, lighting, texturing, modeling, fx and compositing. Previous Inspire winners have worked on “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides” and are currently working on “John Carter” and “World War Z.” Since finishing their placements, all of the winners have secured positions at Cinesite.

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