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My Post House: Sabertooth Productions

Jul 14, 2010 12:00 PM

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What gets you out of bed in the morning to go to work in postproduction?

I truly feel fortunate to be working in the industry of my choosing. If I had a different day job, I would be spending all of my nights "geeking out" on editing and animation software to feed my insatiable curiosity, but luckily I can do that all day long.

In addition to a genuine passion for what I do, I'm driven by the unshakable burden of my mid-western work ethic and loyalty to my clients.

What are your favorite and least favorite things about working in post?

The best thing about post is that, for the most part, success is dependent on what you can do and how well you can do it, not who you know and where you came from. There's an incredible amount of opportunity for talented and driven professionals willing to put in the long hours that this industry demands.

I also love the informality of this industry. People are generally laid-back, genuinely interested in what they do, and you can still get away with dressing like you're in high school—even when you're pushing 40.

My least favorite aspect of my job has to be the hours. Sometimes the things you simply cannot control, like render time, are what create unbearable pressure, and the late nights never seem to end. There will be a generation of editors and animators who will retire one day without knowing how to go to bed before 2 a.m.

What were you doing 10 years ago and what do you expect to be doing 10 years from now?

Ten years ago, the dotcom bubble here in Silicon Valley burst. I was living the life up until that point, working at a post house, enjoying catered meals every day, drinks on tab at night, and company trips to Hawaii. When that all came crashing down, we found ourselves sitting at our desks idly, with no work in sight. I set out on my own and started Sabertooth Productions.

Ten years from now, I hope to still be running Sabertooth Productions, but be working less! Post and animation are tough, and there's a big difference in life when you're 29 without kids and 39 with two kids.

What is your best post memory?

After about 10 years, it starts to blur together, but I'll never forget the first time I actually saw one of my animations on TV. I had rented a movie, popped the tape in, and BAM! days and days of hard work came to life before my eyes. That made me feel like I had made the right career decision.

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