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October 2017
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  • The Facilities 50
    Jon Creamer launches Televisual's 30th exclusive annual Facilities 50 survey featuring the top post production houses in the UK and 52 pages of analysis of the sector
  • Interview: Grant Mansfield
    Hiring top talent and investing heavily in development have been key to growing his Bristol indie Plimsoll Productions, says founder Grant Mansfield
  • The clear view: lenses
    What ever genre you work in, you need to be lens savvy. Here three DoPs guide us through the lens market, picking out the models they like to use in drama and factual
  • Over the top
    The growth of Netflix and Amazon is proving a boon for UK indies, but broadcasters are starting to panic. Tim Dams reports
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  • Blue Planet II
    The producers of Blue Planet II tell Tim Dams how tech advances and military planning helped them capture the secrets of the deep
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Reports&
surveys

Facilities 50 2011 Back to Reports & survey Listing

01 THE MILL
www.the-mill.com
40-41 Great Marlborough Street, London, W1F 7JQ Also has branches in New York, LA and Singapore.
t 020 7287 4041 e pipl@themill.com

Md Darren O’Kelly Head of production Ben Stallard Group director of TV and film Will Cohen
Genres ads, TV
Credits Lynx/Axe Even Angels Will Fall, Merlin, Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Trader
Services audio (ADR), grading (2k), telecine (2k),
vfx (2d, 3d, animation), editing,
DVD, Blu-ray, film recording
Turnover £74.2m KIT 7th PRODUCER 2nd TURNOVER 1st PEER 1st

It’s the third year in succession for The Mill atop the Facilities 50. The visual effects giant is a fast growing global concern with sizable facilities in London, LA and New York, as well as a more modest foray into Asia with a ‘mini Mill’ in Singapore, attached to agency BBH Singapore. The company recently relocated to larger offices in LA to accommodate demand for its services there.

The Mill is the flag bearer for the larger vfx houses that have grown from purely focusing on post production to evolving into creative partners to their clients. It now regularly works as a digital agency, creating and fulfilling concepts for its clients to expand TV campaigns across digital platforms.

“The reality is we’re increasingly being treated as creative partners. That’s always been the case but now it’s more explicit,” says md Darren O’Kelly. “Within visual effects, things continually become ever more complex, interesting and challenging so you’re much more involved from start to finish.”

“The Mill team works with the agency and production company as ‘creative technologists’ and contribute as partners. We look at what assets are being built for the TV campaign – car parts, animation cycles, etc – and work with the director to express the creative outside of the 30-second or 60-second TV spot. It’s about how you can use innovative platforms and technology to push the boundaries.”

The company has seen a notable jump in its turnover in the last year, which O’Kelly attributes to moves made in the last few years: “We gained market share in the much tighter years of recession and some of the seeds of that have been starting to bear fruit. We’ve also been growing our core capabilities – we didn’t really do digital production and gaming three years ago.”
O’Kelly concedes it’s still “tough out there” and “gets no less challenging” but he says, “We tough it out and fight hard for work. It’s about doing great work. If you continue to do that, everything looks after itself.”

02  MPC
 www.moving-picture.com
127 Wardour Street, London, W1F 0NL
Also has branches in New York, LA,
Vancouver and Bangalore
t 020 7434 3100 e press@moving-picture.com

Md Mark Benson Facility director (ads) Graham Bird (film) Christian Roberton Customer services (ads) Vittorio Giannini (film) Emma Phillips Genres film, ads Credits Virgin Atlantic 001, Cravendale Cats With Thumbs, Sky 360 idents, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 Services audio (5.1), grading (2k), telecine (2k), vfx (2d, 3d, animation), editing, DVD, Blu-ray Turnover £64.3m
KIT 9th= PRODUCER 7th= TURNOVER 2nd PEER 2nd

“I’m enormously proud of what we’ve achieved creatively this year,” says MPC Md Mark Benson. “First and foremost you need great clients. Then it’s about meeting very challenging deadlines and making it work financially.” In common with many of the large British vfx houses, MPC has a substantial presence abroad – in the US, Canada and India. It has also witnessed a gradual shifting of its role of late: “We’ve seen an increase in clients asking us to look at solutions to provide innovative ways to distribute content across different platforms - whether that’s tablets and mobile phones or projections across shop fronts in London and New York,” says Benson.

“Our creative projects over the last year have never been better,” believes MPC md Mark Benson. “The minute you compromise on quality you lose your edge.” He says, over the last year, “There’s been a desire for more photo-real character animation and more awareness of the opportunities film-style vfx provide in the advertising space”. Benson points to Cadbury’s Spots V Strips as a good example.

He says about post: “The model is undoubtedly evolving – at the moment, it incorporates traditional post and partnership post, and occasionally production as well. There’s not been a seismic change but there’s undoubtedly been a change.”

03 FRAMESTORE
 www.framestore.com
9 Noel Street, London, W1F 8GH
Also has branches in New York and Reykjavik
t 020 7208 2600 e info@framestore.com

Md, commercials Helen Stanley Deputy md, commercials Lottie Cooper Facility manager Kirsty Cleminson Customer services Simon Gosling Genres film, ads Credits Coca Cola Siege, Andrex It’s the Little Things, LG Rare Butterflies, Philips Parallel Lines, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows part 2 Services audio (5.1) grading (4k), telecine (4k), vfx (2d, 3d, animation), editing, DVD, Blu-ray, film (restoration, recording), Turnover £48.5m
KIT 4th PRODUCER 6th
TURNOVER 3rd PEER 4th

04 THE FARM GROUP
www.farmgroup.tv
13 Soho Square, London, W1D 3QF
Also has branches elsewhere in Soho, in Bristol, Salford and LA
t 020 7437 6677 e mr.macdonald@farmgroup.tv

Md Nicky Sargent and Vikki Dunn Customer services Jason Elliot Genres TV, film Credits The X Factor, Downton Abbey, Chatty Man  Services audio (5.1, Foley, ADR), grading (4k), telecine (4k), vfx (2d, 3d, animation), editing, DVD, Blu-ray, camera hire Turnover £22m
KIT 5th= PRODUCER 3rd TURNOVER 5th PEER 3rd

It’s been a busy 12 months for The Farm, with joint-md Nicky Sargent relocating temporarily to LA to set up The Farm LA – staffed by about 20 people – after taking over LA-based Edit Gods and kitting up a full-service post offer to support The X Factor in the US. It is also posting The MTV Awards over there. “We’re probably the only example of a full-service TV-focused post house in LA,” says Sargent. Back in the UK, The Farm won the contract to run the BBC’s post facilities at MediaCityUK, which Sargent is now getting up and running.

05 ENVY
www.envypost.co.uk
50a Rathbone Place, London, W1T 1JW
t 020 7908 4600 e natascha@envypost.co.uk

Md Dave Cadle Facility manager Natascha Cadle Customer services Mat Appleton, Louise Willis Genres TV, ads Credits Grand Designs, Inside Nature’s Giants, KFC commercial Services audio (5.1, Foley, ADR), grading (4k), vfx (2d, 3d, animation), editing, DVD, Blu-ray  Turnover £12m
KIT 11th PRODUCER 1st TURNOVER 9th PEER 5th

Envy was true to form this year in opening yet another new facility - an offline editing house a few doors down from its Rathbone Street HQ. It now has a total of 75 offlines that feed work into its extensive finishing facilities. Next on the cards is a third Baselight grading suite and, says md Dave Cadle, “If the floor above us [in Rathbone Street] came free, we’d take it. We’re not planning to expand beyond London – it’s what we know.”

06 PRIME FOCUS
www.primefocusworld.com
(ads) 37 Dean St, London, W1D 4PT  (TV) 58 Old Compton St, London, W1D 4UF (film) 2-4 Bucknall St, London, WC2H 8LA t 020 7565 1000 e info@primefocusworld.com

Md Simon Briggs, Martin Hobbs (md, film) Facility manager (ads) Sam Greenwood (TV) Rowan Bray Customer services (ads) Kirsty Currie, (TV) Sarah Hill (TV vfx) Parvinder Bhatia (film vfx) Tim Keene, (View-D) Matthew Bristowe (content services) Sue Mitchell Genres TV, ads, film Credits Star Wars: Episode 1 - The Phantom Menace (3d conversion), Great British Menu, Chanel Gabrielle Services audio (5.1, Foley, ADR), grading (4k), telecine (4k), vfx (2d, 3d, animation), editing, DVD, Blu-ray, film (restoration, recording, cutting), camera hire Turnover £21.5m
KIT 1st PRODUCER 4th= TURNOVER 6th PEER 17th=

Global post house Prime Focus, which has offices in London, India, the US and Canada, has expanded its services in the UK over 2010/11 by launching a TV drama production wing, an animation company and huge film-focused 2d-to-3d conversion facilities, which are currently turning Episode 1 of Star Wars 3d. “The drama production wing is a client, but it’s an inhouse client,” says Prime Focus md UK, Simon Briggs. “It reinforces our credentials from a drama point of view and fully demonstrates we understand the drama workflow. The animation side – Amazing Spectacles – is focused on the commercials business. It’s for certain jobs that require an integrated solution where we work directly for the agency and offer our own roster of directors who creatively project manage the production.”

07 MOLINARE
www.molinare.co.uk
34 Fouberts Place, London, W1F 7PX
t 020 7478 7000 e enquiries@molinare.co.uk

COO Scott Holmgren Customer services Helen Phelps, Chris Elson Genres TV, film Credits The Hour, Misfits, Silent Witness, Baby Zilli commercial, Flying Monsters 3D Services audio (5.1, Foley, ADR), grading (4k), telecine (4k), vfx (2d, 3d, animation), editing, DVD, Blu-ray, film (restoration, recording, cutting) Turnover £16m
KIT 2nd PRODUCER 7th= TURNOVER 8th PEER 6th=

“Molinare has used 2011 as an opportunity to reinvent and rejuvenate itself. Our new brand encompasses greater attention to client services, with a focus on creative talent to complement the capital expenditure,” believes COO Scott Holmgren. “We plan to grow through the continued development of certain branches of our business, including vfx, transmission and restoration, which all have growth potential.”

08 EVOLUTIONS
www.evolutions.tv
5 Berners Street, London, W1T 3LF
t 020 7580 3333 e info@evolutions.tv
Also has branches elsewhere in central London

Md Simon Kanjee Facilities director Owen Tyler Customer services Darren Musgrove Genres TV, ads Credits The Apprentice, The Only Way Is Essex, Top Gear Services audio (5.1, Foley, ADR), grading (4k), vfx (2d, 3d), editing, DVD, camera hire Turnover £11.5m
KIT 12th PRODUCER 4th= TURNOVER 10th PEER 6th=

Following a recent MBO, Evolutions has streamlined its real estate, closing what was its Soho Square HQ and consolidating its facilities into two main London offices. 2011’s credits include the inimitable TOWIE.Studio Lambert’s new reality show Seven Days. The downturn, says md Simon Kanjee, has caused Evolutions “to cut overheads to combat lower volumes and margins and invest in more efficient workflow methods.”

09 DELUXE 142

www.deluxe142.co.uk
Film House, 142 Wardour Street, London, W1F 8DD
t 020 7878 0000 e sales@deluxe142.co.uk

Md Peter Wright Facility manager Johnny Whitehead Customer services Richard Fish Genre TV, film Credits Scott Pilgrim vs.The World, Any Human Heart, Episodes, Exit Through the Gift Shop Services audio (5.1, Foley, ADR), grading (4k), telecine (4k), vfx (2d, 3d), editing, film (restoration, recording) Turnover £26m KIT 5th= PRODUCER 22nd= TURNOVER 4th PEER 24th=

Deluxe 142 was formed in November 2010 following the purchase of Ascent Media’s global Creative Services and Media Services businesses by Deluxe. It means Deluxe now owns what was Ascent 142 and Rushes in the UK as well as US-based facilities Company 3, Encore Hollywood and Level 3 Post. Last month Deluxe merged Deluxe 142’s digital intermediary services with Company 3, resulting in Company 3 taking over Deluxe 142’s film grading services. Deluxe 142 echoes the UK’s large vfx houses in saying relationships with clients have been “moving away from client/supplier to a more unified partner style arrangement” over the last year.

10 TECHNICOLOR CREATIVE SERVICES
www.technicolor.com
28-32 Lexington Street, London, W1F 0LF and Pinewood Studios, Pinewood Road, Iver Heath, Bucks, SL0 0NH
t 020 7319 4900, 01753 658700
e matt.adams@technicolor.com

Md Simon Wilkinson Operations director Chris Smith Director of sales Matt Adams Genres film, TV Credits Attack the Block, TT3D - Closer to the Edge, Gnomeo and Juliet, Vera, Page 8, Lewis Services audio (5.1), grading (4k), telecine (4k), vfx (2d, 3d), editing, DVD, Blu-Ray, film (restoration, recording, cutting) Turnover £20m
KIT 3rd= PRODUCER 13th= TURNOVER 7th PEER –

A sister company to MPC, Technicolor Creative Services focuses on the film and broadcast sectors, offering a full service of post facilities. Over the last year, the company, which has only been based in Soho since 2008, when it relocated from West Drayton, says, “We’ve seen growth in titles design, opticals and digital acquisition, and have built a tapeless pipeline for film dailies. We now plan to grow through market diversification, expansion and new services.”

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