Downton Abbey Series 1-5

  • Barney Jordan
7 x 60 Minutes 1 x 90 Minutes

The series, set in the fictional Yorkshire country estate of Downton Abbey, depicts the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family and their servants after the post-Edwardian era — with the great events in history having an effect on their lives and the British social hierarchy in general. Such events depicted throughout the whole series include the news of the sinking of the RMS Titanic in the first series; the outbreaks of World War I, the Spanish influenza pandemic, and the Marconi scandal in the second series; and the Interwar period and the formation of the Irish Republic in the third series.

Picture and audio post production on 8 x 60 min and 1 x 90 min Christmas Special for ITV 1. Maggie Smith, Hugh Bonnerville and Elizabeth McGovern return for the fourth series of Downton Abbey. As they face new challenges, the Crawley family and the servants who work for them remain inseparably interlinked. Throughout the great house new arrivals rattle the established hierarchies, and the lives of the inhabitants are as shaped by romance, ambition, desire, shocks and heartbreak as ever.

Aidan Farrell graded the ITV 1 drama on the Nucoda Film Master. In the fourth series of Downton, one of Farrell’s main objectives was to create a seamless transition between footage shot at Highclere Castle and the studio. Furthermore, the use strong practical lights meant that Farrell had to protect the highlights of these lamps and also of the details found in the windows. With heavy tracking and painting, Farrell was able to highlight the detail in each lamp.

Shot on the Alexa, Farrell was able to retain more detail in the black and shadow areas. For example, he was able to instil great contrast in the male characters costumes and add more details to the black. For instance, he was able to impart a great punch to the male characters’ costumes (predominantly black), and yet not lose the fine details of the collars, cuffs and buttons. Moreover, huge attention to detail was spent on the cosmetic attributes of the female characters, adding to the beauty of the series. With a glossy, saturated grade Farrell was able to create a print-like texture that gives Downton its cinematic appearance.

Clyde Kellett completed the online in DS Nitris and Nigel Edwards mixed the series in Pro Tools 10.