# Guardians of Himalayas

Written by Achu P. Chandra.

# Intro

On 4th July 2023 I started working on the project GUARDIAN OF HIMALAYAS.

Produced by Asianet News Network and Directed by M. G. Aneesh in Association with the Indian Army.

It's one of our prestigious projects which is being distributed in the entire network of Asianet News in Multi-language.

# Pre Production

With a team of camerapersons from our channel, K. R. Mukund, Gibin Baby, Prashanth Albert, Vishnu Kalapeedam, and Praveen Kollakonam, as well as a sound engineer, Krishna Raj, working under the direction of M. G. Aneesh, the shooting took place in Kashmir, India, on 15th June 2023.

The team covered SONAMARG, SOJILAPASS, DRASS, KARGILL, KHALSAR, SIACHEN, and SRI NAGAR where the Indian army practice shooting and high-precision training in harsh conditions. Our Shoot was wrapped up on 26th June 26 2023.

# Production Technical Details

The team captured all footage in 1920 x 1080p at 50 fps; in addition, the team used an iPhone 13 for some shots too. All videos were captured in flat profile with the following cameras:

SONY FX3 1920 x 1080 P 50fps 2 to 4 XAVC
SONY PXW 280 1920 x 1080 P 50fps 8 Mono channel XAVC L
CANON 5D MK4 1920 x 1080 P 50fps 2 Stereo H264 ALL I
Gopro 10 1920 x 1080 P 50fps 2 Stereo H265

The audio engineer took a different approach; he recorded all the interviews, location audio, and ambience in Zoom H6 with 4 audio tracks.

1.99 TB of footage, including audio, was stored on two hard disks with proper backup.

Post-production started on 4th July 2023 in Trivandrum, India, at the main office of Asianet News.

All rushes were transferred to local storage (Promise Pegasus) at the edit suite, and it took 4 days for data validation and sorted footage according to the name, date, location, event, and camera. We also renamed the clip with the event name along with the shot number and camera name; to help the editor find the visuals easily.

# Sorting

We started editing with Final Cut Pro X 10.4.6 and later migrated to 10.6.8. We have two Promise Raid storage, on one Promise, we stored footage, and on the other, we stored the FCPX library.

First, we imported all the rushes to Final Cut Pro events and arranged all the footage using folders and keywords, smart collection, and clip rating using Favorites. The powerful media management functions in FCPX make things better.

Sorted footage with Proper Keywords
Sorted footage with Proper Keywords

# Sequence

We set the sequence settings to 1920 x 1080p at 25 fps.


Sequence Setting
Sequence Setting

# Why XDCAM HD422?

We are Asianet News India's first private satellite channel and the number one news channel in regional channels in India. As a media house, we have some Broadcast Standards for Optimum Quality and Storage, and we chose industry-standard codec XDCAM 422 as the house format.

# Roles

After organizing the files in the Final Cut Pro Library, we label the clips with roles and create multi-clips and synchronized clips.

Audio Roles Labelling
Audio Roles Labelling

We also export a FCPXML as a backup.

# Edit

Before starting the edit, we completed all multi-clip sync with audio, which was recorded with Zoom H6. All multi-clips are created with a setting of 1920x1080 at 50 fps. Some multi-clips need to sync audio video manually due to the location extremity and completed all syncing work in 4 days.

Take additional stock footage, music, sound effects, and Apple Motion Temples from Storyblocks.

I started editing the full-length documentary in the original language version (Malayalam voiceover), and the sequence is too complex due to the style of storytelling. The sequence is filled with motion titles, multi-clips with six-track audio (compound clips), speed ramps, slow-motion effects, and creative motion graphics with Apple Motion. I completed the draft edit within 20 days and sent low-res for preview.

Draft Edit Sequence
Draft Edit Sequence

# Final Cut

After review, we locked the sequence with subsequent changes on October 6, 2023, and sent the sequence to the Audio Department. Due to the complexity of the sequence, we exported a multi-track movie file that contained 28 stereo audio tracks that were properly arranged. The total duration of the documentary is 1 hour and 26 minutes.

Locked Sequence with Audio Roles
Locked Sequence with Audio Roles

In the meantime, the English voice-over script was also generated.

# Audio

The Audio Department started their work with original location sound replacement and sound design; it took two weeks to complete, and they recorded the English voiceover too.

Sajim Noushadh, the sound engineer, had to deal with 36 audio tracks and mix them with Broadcast Standard. All audio work was done on an Intel iMac running Avid Protools with industry-standard plugins and hardware. Two mixes (English and Malayalam) were delivered on Masted stereo AIFF audio files.

Protools Session
Protools Session

# Final Phase

Color Grading started on 9th November 2023. It was complex due to different cameras and extreme terrain. The built-in color tools helped me to complete my work easily and the Power Full Final Cut Pro handled all things smoothly. I had 4 layers of colour filters in each clip and completed the grading process in 3 days. After grading, we used fcpx title presets for name supers and other labelling.

Colour Grading using Final Cut Pro with Built in tools
Colour Grading using Final Cut Pro with Built in tools

# Delivery

On the fourth day, we added mixed tracks to the sequence and exported the documentary's master versions in XDCAM HD422 at 1920 x 1080P 25 frames per second onto a QuickTime movie wrapper.

Final Sequence Loaded with Mixed Audio tracks
Final Sequence Loaded with Mixed Audio tracks

# Credits

An Asianet News Production in association with Indian Army.

Design & Direction:
M. G. Aneesh

Viju V. Nair
M. G. Aneesh

Prashanth Albert
Gibin Baby
K. R. Mukund
Vishnu Kalapeedom
Praveen Kollakonam

Editing & Colouring:
Achu. P. Chandra

Anish Kumar

Sync Sound:

Sound Mixing:
Sajim Noushad

N. M. Babu (English)
M. G. Aneesh (Malayalam)

Map Animation:
Pramodh K. T

# Storytelling at its most powerful

Throughout the project, I didn't face any project errors or library errors, and the powerful Final Cut Pro delivered maximum performance with good stability and faster working which helped me to achieve the goal. The super cool features like Automatic speed (Video Conforming) and Optical Motion manage all things perfectlyon a top model of intel 27 inch iMac

In Asianet News, we use Final Cut Pro X from Version 10.2 to 10.6.8. As a 24x7 news channel, we use the potential and speed of Final Cut at every moment. More than 24 video editors edit stories, explainers, programs, events, news headlines, and web content every day by exploring the creative world through the Final Cut Pro Eco System.

All screenshots used in this note are the property of Asianet News Network Private Limited.

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