Birmingham School of Acting 2008 DVD

Graduate Showreel 2008.

The Brace Media team are both happy and proud to once again work for and alongside the Birmingham School of Acting [BSA], to help them produce the 2008 Graduate Showreel.
One thousand copies, wonderfully packaged with an accompanying 24 page booklet. Please, have a look at the unashamed self-promoting photos…. Oooooh, shiny.

BSA_08_Case_and_Book

Previous years have seen us produce four quite different ‘Brummiewood’ DVDs to use as student and facility promotional tools.

Brummiewoods 1,2,3 and 4 had stories penned by established regional writers, which were filmed by professional crews and Directors, with the BSA students picked for the various roles in the short films.

The DVDs were then authored in a fairly straightforward way: Somewhere in the region of seven or eight films – playable independently or all together, with sub menus to reach info screens about the writers, Directors, crew, students, Brummiewood ethos and the BSA facility.

BSA_08_Main_Menu

This year, the format had a bit of a makeover……

38 students, playing parts in scenes from 5 award-winning contemporary films, directed by BAFTA and RTS award winning film maker, Michael B. Clifford. The final DVD had to be able to: Play all films, play one film, play just the scenes [in some cases from more than one film] featuring a selected Actor, and return to a suitable place upon completing a required task too.
The above doesn’t sound like anything too special. Until you throw into the equation that each film was broken up into sometimes fifteen scene chunks, and the fact that we don’t really do DVD-Video like other companies; we love putting transitions from one menu to another – and from sub menus back to the main menu…. just so everything flows a little more sweetly and seamlessly.

BSA_08_Oblique

So we have:
A main menu, with indepentent transitions from the options of ‘Play all’ / ‘Browse by Actor’ / ‘Browse by film’ / BSA info.

4 Actors pages with transitions from the main menu into the next and previous pages of Actors and a transition to the main menu from each of the four Actors screens. There are 38 Actors in total with each Actor having an intro screen before their run of scenes.

5 films, totalling 65 scene chunks. When played as a ‘play all’ selection – each film is preceeded by a screen of text.

5 info pages with 6 transition into and out of the main menu.

Now, as any DVD author worth his or her salt should know – the DVD specification allows for a DVD-Video disc to have 99 VTS elements.

If you add together all of the video pieces and transitions that we had, you are left with a grand old total of around 125 VTS elements, which would lead one to consider authoring the project for pressing to two DVD5 [single layer single side] discs or for one DVD10 [Single layer double side] disc.

BSA_08_Top_Down

If anyone around these parts is going to stick it to the man (strictly in terms of DVD authoring, you understand) then it’s going to be us.

Double sided discs? Two discs? Poobah, we reckon that a showcase should be conveniently placed on one side of one piece of optical media. Who wants to get half way through seeing the best that a facility has to offer – only to have to split the flow, and spend twenty five seconds turning over / changing the disc?

So, we took it upon ourselves to find a way of getting the 125 or so VTS elements onto one side of a single layer disc, and making it sure it was still within the bounds of DVD specification.

BSA_08_Upright

Brace would like to say a ‘well done!’ to all of the Actors in this year’s showreel. In our humble opinion, the Graduates from the BSA continue to get better, year on year.