Chris MacIntosh

August 18, 2021 9:47 am Published by

What’s your role at the NFB, and what are your responsibilities?

I get asked this question A LOT! My official role at the NFB is Technical Coordinator for the Atlantic Studio, working from the Halifax office. However, the position encompasses quite a bit. My job responsibilities span almost all aspects of film production. I work with the filmmakers starting in the investigate/development stage, establishing technical specifications for their shoots. I organize and review all the media from each shoot and provide technical feedback to the production team. I set up Avid/Premiere Pro/FCPX editing projects, create and sync editing proxies and assist the editors throughout the entire process. When the edit is finished, I complete what is called the “conform” of the edit, which is the process of converting the proxy media to the original camera raw media. I also maintain and track all the Atlantic Studio’s production gear and production hard drives, in addition to maintaining and upgrading both of our editing suites and our animation suite.

How long have you been at the NFB? Tell us about your career path.

I started at the Film Board in 2013 and became a full-time, indeterminate employee in 2017—good news which I received during my honeymoon! Prior to the Film Board, I worked for lots of companies in the private entertainment sector. In 2000-2001, I started my career as a 3D animator working on programs for CTV (Little Buck’s Christmas) and CBC (The Hippo Tub Co.). Since then, I have had numerous roles in the entertainment industry, including Visual Effects Artist, Visual Effects Editor, Rotoscope Artist, Assistant Editor, Assistant Online Editor, Online Editor, Colourist and now, Technical Coordinator. I’ve been lucky to have been given the opportunities to wear many different “hats” throughout my career. It is helpful that knowledge, principles and practices that you learn while working in one position are relevant and can be applied to other positions, which makes those crossovers in the entertainment industry possible. It’s the main reason why I love this industry so much… the flexibility!

What makes the NFB unique in your view?

I have always cheered for the underdog and fought for what is fair and right, so growing up, the NFB resonated with me from the perspective of diversity and inclusion. The NFB will always be about giving a voice to under-served groups and fighting injustice in their films. But I would have to say the Film Board is most unique for its dedication to being diverse and inclusive as an organization.

What is it about your job that makes you most proud?

There are lots of aspects of my job that I’m proud of, but I think I’m most proud of the relationships and the people I have met during my time at the Film Board. Inside and outside the organization. All my colleagues from across the country are an absolute pleasure to work with everyday. They are all so knowledgeable and respectful; I could never have asked for a better team of individuals. But as well, the relationships I’ve forged with filmmakers from different disciplines, from across the region—it has been a real privilege to have worked with them all. We have an amazing talent pool in Atlantic Canada; the film industry is in our blood.

What career did you aspire to when you were young?

As a kid, I think the first job I wanted was to “deliver babies.” Then someone told me that storks already had the position, so I began to think of alternative professions. From there it was the typical “NBA basketball player, movie star, rock star, scientist, doctor, etc.” But for the obvious reason that I wasn’t very good at any of those things, I never pursued them. I think it was during my early teens that I developed an appreciation for architecture, which coincided with my love of computers, which pushed me towards a love of 3D visualization. I remember being in Grade 5 or 6, and each student had to choose a job they wanted to shadow for a day. I ended up choosing an architectural firm and shadowed one of their visualization artists. It wasn’t what I expected it to be; it was still a developing position, as using 3D models to visualize architectural developments was still relatively new at the time. But it gave me insight into the fact that I had a passion for everything 3D and whatever I was going to do in my professional career, it was going to be heavily dependant on computers. Was I right!

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This post was written by Jimena Romero