Universal Pictures

Enabling global collaboration for major movie production

Aspera faspex™ helps Universal Pictures meet their short deployment timelines, scalability, high security and ease-of-use standards

 

One of the world’s largest film studios, Universal Pictures, has produced many major motion pictures including Battleship and Snow White and the Huntsman. These massive projects require an army of partners and facilities seamlessly working together in order to deliver a top-notch final product. Each day during post-production, large media files—individually between 15 and 30 GB in size—must be transferred and manipulated multiple times before being considered a finished product.

To meet the demands of this type of global collaboration, Universal Pictures needed a way to quickly and securely transfer large sets of data between team members. Additionally, new post-production teams are brought in with each movie, so new groups of artists must quickly learn how to use this file transfer system.

Over the years, Universal Pictures has tried several solutions from various vendors, all of which fell short in delivering the required speed, ease-of-use and security at a reasonable price point. Some of the digital delivery methods required several weeks of set-up time as well as extensive training for each new crew, and were not able to adapt to the different facilities’ bandwidth constraints or perform on commodity hardware.

After a thorough evaluation of available collaborative file exchange solutions, Universal Pictures adopted Aspera faspex™ for their global post-production process to meet their short deployment timelines, scalability, high security and ease-of-use standards. Production teams now use the email-style interface for distributing and exchanging massive files and directories, and integrated email notifications let team members know content was delivered successfully.

faspex, Aspera’s flagship person-to-person and project-based file exchange solution, has significantly reduced production cycle times while meeting stringent security requirements and ensuring high levels of flexibility in their workflows.

“Aspera is now our approved standard for transferring content around the world,” said John Toal, director, post production content security at Universal Pictures. “Before Aspera, each time we started production on a new film, we had to spend a great deal of time setting up the system and training new crew members on the file transfer process. Because of Aspera’s intuitive interface and set-up, new users simply go to a web page, click, drag and drop. It couldn’t be easier. We can quickly configure the system, use it for the six-month production lifecycle, and then cycle it back into use as the next post-production teams need it.”

“With the globalization of post production, growing file sizes, and the enduring need to deliver to tight deadlines, studios like Universal Pictures can rely on our proven, secure and flexible data movement platform to keep their productions on schedule and teams up to date on the status of projects no matter where they are in the world,” said Michelle Munson, Aspera president and co-founder. “By relying on faspex, Universal can ramp up production teams in hours as opposed to weeks and immediately experience the benefits of Aspera’s high-speed file transfer technology."

 

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"Aspera is now our approved standard for transferring content around the world."John Toal, Director of Post Production Content Security