NY post houses on upswing

Core valuables

The tax incentive that's setting TV production on fire in the city doesn't extend to postproduction, but New York's post houses are rising to the challenge, drawing in TV post from lab and dailies to finished product with a combination of state-of-the-art gear, editors and colorists, as well as competitive prices.

PostWorks New York (100 Avenue of the Americas, 10th floor, 212-894-4000) is a red-hot destination for TV post. Current-running hits and the lion's share of pilots shot in New York also are posting at the company, including NBC/Universal's "M.O.N.Y." and two from Sony
Pictures Television, "Canterbury's Law" (for Fox) and a second untitled pilot.

PostWorks debuted in 1995 as an Avid rental facility known for its tech support, then bought the Tape House and some of its star talent in 2003 -- and the TV business arrived in earnest.

"It was a huge leap of faith going after longform projects," company senior vp sales Carol Jazwinski says. "It ended up being the right thing in the right place at the right time." Luck met preparation, since PostWorks set up soup-to-nuts services, from the film lab to six telecine suites and a lot of space for productions to create Avid offline suites. About 100 people work for the privately held company in Soho.

Technicolor's full-service film lab had been in downtown since 1972, but the company abandoned its old digs for a brand-new Technicolor New York (110 Leroy St., 3rd floor, 212-609-9400) in the West Village; it officially reopened in 2003.

The company's TV business evolved in the early 2000s, says Technicolor senior vp Charles Herzfeld, in sync with its development of a strong network of post facilities in Los Angeles. The killer app is a high-speed and highly secure pipeline that connects Technicolor NY with its sister companies.

Since Technicolor NY handled its first pilot -- "The Service" from Touchstone/ABC -- in 2004, it has posted a full TV season of the network's "Six Degrees" (which took advantage of the New York-to-Los Angeles pipeline) and this year is busy with two pilots, "New Amsterdam" for Regency Television (for Fox) and an untitled Craig Wright project by ABC TV Studio for delivery to ABC.

New York is home to some world-class audio post facilities, and at least one of them -- Sound One (1619 Broadway, 8th floor, 212-765-4757) -- is knee-deep in TV sound post. The company, which was established in 1968 and has been an Ascent Media asset since 1999, mainly services the city's indie film market and the half-dozen studio pictures that post there. But television is fast becoming a significant part of the studio's market.

"New York City can now handle a lot of TV post," says managing director Steven Tollen, who says Sound One is at work on two pilots. "Producers used to be afraid to post in New York, but the labs are better, the post houses are better, and the sound facilities are better."

The facility offers eight rerecording studios, three ADR studios, a Foley stage and nearly 100 editing suites, in the Brill Building in midtown Manhattan. Also available are video-transfer suites and a large sound effects library.

Tollen is confident that Sound One will continue to snag TV projects. "Producer desire to work closer to home is changing," he says. "That is old-school thinking for TV executives. They're more inclined now to work in New York City because of the financial incentives."

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