The Eye of Doom: Documentary News —
The Eye of Doom has signed off on three of the episodes.
Who or what is the Eye of Doom? A friend of mine going a ways back who has an amazing talent for picking out all the slightest imperfections and oversights that crop up when you’re working on a large-scale project like this documentary. Maybe a boom mike gets into a shot, or a filter is applied poorly, or the framing could be much improved. It takes an intense, detached, involved eye to do so, and he has it, so I call him the Eye of Doom. It’s Doom because of course any major errors he finds means lots of work for me, but better now than after the DVDs are pressed and I can do nothing about them.
Every time the Eye asks me about a specific setup, like “Why is this shot like this?” or “Why do you cut from here to here?”, I can often reply with a paragraph or two, specifically about this choice. This is a sign, perhaps, that I’ve spent a whole heck of a lot of time editing.
I kind of wish I could have done some little project before this one, some easy subject with a tiny but clear cast of characters that would have been a few months of work before this insane monolith of a project, but there you go. Every task in this project is really darned huge, and very time consuming. Just subtitles have been a big deal, not to mention the commentary tracks, or really, even the selection of music for the soundtracks. Big, I tell you.
Mostly, I am fixing up sound. Sound has turned out to be the big deal with this
project; with interviews conducted in hallways, computer rooms, conventions, outside, and even an in-use band rehearsal space, we have a lot of background noise on some of these tapes. I’ve been able to remove a lot of it, but it takes time. There’s also some wide variances in how various people spoke, so I’m working with that as well. This is a case where I made a specific choice and trade-off a few years ago; I chose to do the travelling alone, instead of with a crew, because I knew that I would kill a crew or lose some good friends to take the trips I took. So with just me alone, there’s only myself to look through the lens, consider the shot, set up the sound and take readings, and then conduct the interview. During the interview, I check the tape, check the lights, make sure the camera is still running, verify the framing, and, oh yeah, ask a series of questions both from my own notes and based on the anwsers the person was giving at the time. To be honest, I should be happy the whole production isn’t shot upside and backwards in black and white.
At some point I will discuss my thoughts on the copying and peer-to-peering that will happen with this project, but not today. After my stuff is out, I’ll likely write up a few thoughts about it.
The Eye of Doom is now viewing the bonus footage. I can’t wait.
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