Where online movie downloads are concerned, it was never a case of will the studios do it, but when will they, and how far will they go. Watching Hollywood's vain efforts to put a stranglehold on filesharing technology and other software that it considered posed a threat to its business - you'd be forgiven for thinking that in a Hollywood exec's perfect world the internet wouldn't exist, computers would be the preserve of the rich, and people would still be traipsing to the local stores for movies on VHS.
U.S. filmmakers Jeff Zimbalist and Matt Mochary found Anderson Sa and Junior Jose bringing about change against all the odds in a true story that galvanises, and humbles, the spirit. After founding the Afro Reggae group, they began to excite their communities with an energetic mix of drumming and dancing that packs a powerful message.
Director Matt Mochary talks here about the logistics of filming in a suburban war-zone on a tight budget, and the inspiration that he and others have gained from the film.
I thought five editing programs was more than enough to satiate my filmmaking urges when I looked at Adobe Video Collection Production bundle (now discontinued). But then Adobe Creative Suite Production Studio Premium recently landed with a heavy thud on my doormat. Try a suite of seven high-end editing tools for size. There's so many programs here that there's even a program to help the other programs work with each other in a more seamless fashion.
One of the biggest design challenges with any software, but particularly complex programs like video editing and special effects software, is how to make everything intuitive and easily accessible without creating on-screen clutter. One welcome improvement, which deals with this problem excellently, is the introduction across all the editing programs of a more elastic workspace: as you expand and contract individual windows all the various workspace elements automatically resize around it.
One of the highlights for those who use After Effects compositions in their Premiere Pro projects is the introduction in Production Studio of Dynamic Link, which is not a standalone program in itself but the connector between programs. If you make changes to an After Effects composition that is already embedded in Premiere Pro (or Adobe Encore) the changes you made in After Effects show up - dynamically - in those other programs. Under the old system, you would have to re-render the After Effects file then re-import it.
Many of the stand-out new features of Production Studio involve the smoother design and integration of the different programs, but individual programs have seen notable enhancements.
Any review of Adobe's special effects behemoth can only really scratch the surface of its capabilities. It's no surprise that AE has the fattest manual in the pack, there's so much to it. For the uninitiated, After Effects is a fully-featured motion graphics, animation and image compositing toolkit. Using a combination of timelines and keyframes, and some heavy math, it can turn a dull graphic into molten lava or create metor showers out of thin air.
Adobe's professional level audio editor benefits nicely from the new design and integration features of these Adobe Production Studio releases. Audition 2.0 shares Production Studio's elastic, unified workspace, with custom workspaces, and useful touches like the tilda (~) key for quickly maximising a highlighted panel to full screen.
Adobe's DVD creator may be the most straightforward of all the programs in the Adobe Production Studio bundle, but it's no slouch when it comes to creating good-looking work. Encore has all the flexibility offered by the new stretchy interface with its easily adjustable frames, dockable palettes and support for custom workspaces (see Adobe Production Studio overview).
Adobe Production Studio and Total Training tutorials (in brackets)