The decision to finish in HDR also occurred as the show moved from pilot to series. Although the show will initially air in standard dynamic range, the HDR masters promise an enhanced viewing experience when the technology reaches more households.
Daley noted that, even as the show moved to an HDR workflow, they continued to employ the LUT they developed when they were expecting a conventional HD finish as the lighting and other creative decisions had been based on that look. “We treated the existing LUT like a film print being remastered in HDR,” Daley said. “We embraced the brightness of the new format, but we exercised restraint. The look pops where it needs to, but doesn't distract from the story.”
“We had to redo the process we went through in pre-production. It took some experimentation to get it right.”
Daley says that the extra time and effort proved worthwhile and are evident in the results. “The colors are like characters. We have a lot of dark, grainy, contrasty images, but there is real beauty in the period hues, even when they are slightly askew. They provide a glimmer of optimism in an otherwise bleak world. People who get to see the HDR version are in for a treat. The scenes on 42nd Street, with the marquees, neon and flashing lights... it's like you're looking through a window into 1971.”