- A new white paper provides guidance on five key business objectives — enabled by cloud infrastructure and services — that studios will need to succeed in a new era of content production.
- To prepare for the digital Hollywood of the future, content producers need to take workloads and workflows global in minutes. Yet legacy IT architectures aren’t able to keep up with the data growth and complexity in areas such as UHD footage, high-resolution audio, and VFX.
- Speed is of the essence: Production technologists should be able to reduce the time they need to upload and download content and increase the time they get to iterate and refine it.
READ MORE: The Future of Content Production (Slalom)
Everyone in this industry knows that cloud-based platforms are speeding up production and slashing costs of travel but it’s happening more quickly than anyone could have anticipated.
“The studios that are gaining a real competitive advantage right now are continuing to use the platforms that made remote content production possible during the pandemic,” says consulting firm Slalom. “For studios that haven’t much embraced digital platforms or the cloud, there’s still time. Big-name studios that decided not to use cloud infrastructure ten years ago are changing their minds today.”
Its new white paper — “Cloudy and Bright: The Future of Content Production” — explores five key business objectives the cloud enables and that studios will need to optimize: speed, security, savings, stability, and scalability.
READ IT ON AMPLIFY: Is There a Dark Cloud Over Cloud Storage?
READ IT ON AMPLIFY: How MovieLabs, SMPTE and EBU Are Mapping Out Cloud Workflows
Securing content from end to end is “Job One” for Hollywood. And, per the report, the answers are in the cloud.
For example, a cloud-based content management system can allow filmmakers to store, access, and work with data and content in a secure and centralized location. Features such as user authentication and data encryption can protect against unauthorized access while also providing flexibility and scalability to support the dynamic nature of film production. Different users can be authorized to access content at different phases of the production process.
A lot of ink has been spilled about the financial benefits of adopting cloud platforms to eliminate large CAPEX investments in computing, networking, storage, and maintenance. According to Slalom, the truth is that most of these expenditures are transferred to the operating cost field in the corporate balance sheet.
The report says the real savings potential of the cloud comes from efficiency improvements that shorten producers’ to-do lists and accelerate production cycles, saving time in an industry where time is most certainly money.
While digital tools and platforms won’t ever replace the desire to film on location in exotic places, they can enable footage to move at the speed of light and help prevent costly reshoots. Camera-to-cloud solutions are highlighted for its ability to stream footage straight into the cloud, transforming “dailies” into “instantlies.”
In terms of delivering content, what saves studios time here are media platforms that use cloud services to deliver content across traditional and digital channels, from on-demand to livestreaming.
For example, FOX Corporation migrated its on-premises MediaCloud platform to AWS. According to a case study at AWS, the new FOX MediaCloud on AWS and its “reservoir of source assets” tagged with metadata ranging from featured logos to Nielsen ratings enables intelligent transcoding, allows FOX to automatically push content to more than 300 different endpoints spanning programming and promotion.
Slalom insist that preparing for the digital Hollywood of the future “mandates taking workloads and workflows global in minutes,” but that studios’ legacy IT architectures are not able to keep up with the pace of data growth and complexity.
Cloud-based platforms by contrast can support storage needs that are growing at 50-100 terabytes per year, it says. Specifically, “cloud-based content lakes” can be used to ingest all assets into a single location, enabling the transition from linear and slow on-premises workflows to digital and dynamic workflows at a global scale.
The cloud is foundational to the future of M&E, so it’s crucial to understand how to leverage it for all kinds of applications. Whether you’re a creative working in production or a systems engineer designing a content library, cloud solutions will change your work life. Check out these cloud-focused insights hand-picked from the NAB Amplify archives:
- Get Onto My Cloud: Why Remote Production Tools Are Used by 90% of Video Professionals
- TV Production in the Cloud: The Whys and Hows
- SaaS, IaaS, PaaS: Cloud Computing Class Is in Session
- Take a Tour of the Global Cloud Ecosystem
- Choosing Between Cloud-Native and Hybrid Storage (Spoiler: You May Not Need To)