Published on Wednesday, 30 November -0001


Virtual Post & Alchemist OD Bring One Direction to Big Screens

Virtual Post, a recently formed UK post production facility headed by conversion expert Jon Lee, recently carried out standards conversion on Snell’s Alchemist OD software to bring HD footage shot at pop band One Direction’s San Siro Stadium, Milan concert in June 2014 to a worldwide cinema audience.


Produced by Fulwell 73 and distributed by Arts Alliance, One Direction’s ‘Where We Are: The Concert Film’ was watched by over one million people around the world on 3,400 screens in 78 countries. The film was released worldwide on 11 October 2014 and ended showings the next day. The film is among the highest grossing event cinema productions, with net total $15 million. The DVD was released in December 2014.

Music film and TV producer Jim Parsons was in charge of the project. “Preserving the concert’s original quality of experience was our single mission when converting the film from 1080 29.97p to 1080 24p. It was of primary importance that the conversion stood the challenge of the big screen,” he said, explaining that the highly dynamic performance had been captured using over 40 cameras. Large amounts of movement from both the cameras and the performance resulted in a demanding piece of content to manage.


Alchemist OD was developed as a practical implementation of motion compensated processing to support improvements in grey-scale resolution, colorimetry and, especially, the higher frame rates needed to support 4K and beyond - as well as the range of mobile display devices people watch video on. “Working with Jon Lee at Virtual Post and Snell’s Alchemist OD was the best decision that we made for this project,” he said.

“I was very surprised to see the way Alchemist OD handled the material. Jon and I went through the whole film frame by frame and barely spotted any imperfections. It was extremely clean output for such a challenging low frame rate conversion.” Alchemist OD manages image quality from the camera to mobile, web, TV or cinema screens as a means of protecting content, brands and potential revenue.