This was a great project that became bigger and bigger along the way. So much happened .. so much learned .. I tried to keep the production as simple as possible but if you’re into professional 4K motion-controlled time-lapse, there is no way to keep it simple. I’ll dive into a few aspects of the production but first, just enjoy the film. This embedded film is the HD American version, the 4K versions in 8 languages (USA, GBR, JPN, CHN, DUI, NLD, ESP, FRA) are on Youtube.

The concept

Corporate storytelling is often un-original and boring. It shouldn’t because if you look at the way we write about historic corporations in documentaries and history books, corporations seem to matter a lot. They play an important role in peoples lives and the history of our nations. Why not write with the same passion about today’s corporations? In this film we wanted to put The Fish Company in this bigger perspective.
We chose the time-lapse technique because it is a powerful visual tool to show the capacity and speed of the factory. Camera motion adds a sense of depth and follows the production lines nicely.

The shoot

The film was shot with a Panasonic GH2 on a Stage One dolly with an Emotimo TB3 motion controlled head. You can read my review here. My gear was covered in fish and needed a lot of washing to get rid of the smell! But it was worth it; shooting in harbors and big factories during sunrise is beautiful. 
Originally I wanted to open and close the film with a drone shot. But as the factory is close to a highway, it was not permitted. Thankfully actually, because a realtime shot would not have matched the time-lapse experience. Alternatively, we use an elevated platform. Easy and efficient, very happy with it. I even like the -whoooop- tilt.


I edited time lapses on my MacBook Pro before but this project was way too heavy. So I invested in a Mac Pro 4K editing set. But even this supercomputer becomes slow-as-shit when you render a 4K video with de-flicker, grading, de-noise and flare plugins running. Back are the old days of sleeping on the couch while my Mac Pro churns for two hours on a 3-minute film. So already I’m thinking about upgrading. Again..

Editing voice overs is nothing new to me. But editing eight languages/voice overs is. I learned a lot. Like, to the ears Japanese may seem quick but it actually is very slow. I needed to add 40 seconds to that film to make it fit. And it was different for every language. Not just in total length but the time per paragraph can be very different as well. You can make it easy on yourself and lengten/shorten shots to make things fit but I wanted the voice over to match the images. So I ended up with eight different edits.

This time-lapse film was quite an wild ride though I think this is just the beginning of many more time-lapse adventures. I would like tho thank my client The Fish Company for their enthusiasm, Berend Berlijn for the script and all the voice over talents for their impeccable work. Great job!