Cinematographer KK Senthil Kumar has all praise for CV Rao, the head of DI at Annapurna Studios, and colourist Shiva Kumar BVR for getting top quality for SS Rajamouli's "Baahubali".
"Baahubali" broke new technological boundaries and presented many creative challenges to its editors, who spent hundreds of hours on its DI (Digital Intermediate) process. Annapurna Studios, the DI partner of "Baahubali", employed as many technicians on the project.
"It is the first ever DI process ever attempted in India in the scale of Hollywood films," Rao said. "It was a pioneering effort. 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 work flows 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."
"DI is all about shooting digitally and getting that content into editing, colour, 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," he added, while explaining about the role of DI.
Meanwhile, Senthil Kumar praised the world-class product delivered by Annapurna Studios. "Digital Color Correction (popularly known as DI) has become a very essential and prominent part of Film making today. Colourist, work flow and equipment are important to deliver the world class product. 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 team from 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," added the cinematographer.
The editorial team, headed by Rao and colouring expert Shiva Kumar BVR, consisted of supporting colourists, conformists, & visual effects artists.
"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," said Rao.
"In addition, an Apace active backup solution with 400 TB of storage was also installed, which could immediately switch over if ISIS failed. To meet the film makers expectations we brought in a completely new Base-light systems dedicated to 'Baahubali'. This project 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," added the head of DI team.