Family Guy’s Source Elements Remote Workflow
October 26, 2021

The crew at Disney’s 20th Century Animation, who produce Family Guy & American Dad, have used Source Elements solutions for recording remote worldwide talent for years.

Our team designed the remote workflow to record the entire Family Guy season remotely:

 

 

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Family Guy, created by Seth MacFarlane in 1999, is a surreal and darkly humorous animated sitcom, lampooning American culture. The series has won three Emmy & 3 Annie awards.

During 2020, as situations rapidly changed, the team needed to adapt their workflow and work remotely, with both remote talent and remote creatives.

Remote Workflow Design for Family Guy

The team at Source Elements worked with Disney to design and integrate the same remote workflow as with a studio control room and a live room for Family Guy, so:

In the traditional animation workflow for Family Guy, we record the voices first for the animators to work with.

The voice talent is recorded remotely from the studios, using Source-Connect Standard at the talent end and Source-Connect Pro at the engineer’s end creating this remote worklow:

This gives the highest quality recording possible from the remote end and allows the security of “an auto-restore” session. You never miss anything if there are internet hiccups.

Each end has the Source-Connect Q Manager.

The talent’s Q Manager checks the sent audio, and the studio’s Q Manager confirms that the engineer is receiving all of this information by comparing the data with its recorded audio files folder.

If there is an internet hiccup and some audio packets are missed (dropout), it alerts the Talents’ Q Manager, which then sends the missing audio data to the Engineer’s Audio files folder via an ftp server, without the Engineer having to do anything whatsoever.

Total peace of mind from the Q Manager, your digital best buddy that’s always watching your back.

Talkback


The Engineer can talk to the talent via the reverse feed of Source-Connect (as it’s fully duplex).

To activate his talkback mic in Pro Tools, he uses Source-Talkback, a small highly efficient plug-in that he places on his talkback microphone input. Also, his monitoring output channel…

the monitoring dims by a user-predefined amount

The talkback has three modes:

Now let’s consider the creatives that direct the voice record sessions and make all the important decisions (and eat most of the biscuits).

They need to be able:

To do this we make an internet Source-Now room, a high-quality low latency chrome browser chat-room where all the participants audio is meshed together (i.e. you are not fed yourself back) to enable easy conferencing.

This enables the creatives to direct the talent with “their collective creative wisdom” and to discuss which biscuits are best.

The Creatives also like to have “a private chat room” where they can converse amongst themselves (or with the audio engineer) and not disrupt the talent. 

 

Find more about remote workflows:
https://source-elements.com/products/source-nexus

How to record remotely to talents as engineer:
https://source-elements.com/products/source-connect

 

 

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