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Adobe Productions: New Collaboration and Productivity for Premiere Pro

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When it was first announced at the Sundance Film Festival in January 2020, the new Productions toolset for Adobe Premiere Pro looked like a dream come true for filmmakers and other visual storytellers who have been looking for next-generation collaboration, including cloud-enabled and remote-friendly workflows. Now that Productions is available starting April 14, Productions is revealed to be every bit as valuable for individual creators who want better organizational tools, greater security, and the ability to share assets including media files across projects with cross-project referencing.

Adobe also announced the availability of Adobe Team Projects for individual Creative Cloud subscribers using Premiere Pro and Adobe After Effects through August 17, as well as a lineup of live presentations previously scheduled for Adobe's NAB stage, hosted online by Adobe Evangelist Jason Levine, featuring a variety of Adobe customers and live Q&A.


ADOBE PRODUCTIONS
"Productions was designed from the ground up with input from top filmmakers, Hollywood editorial teams, and leading social video creators," says Van Bedient Senior Business Development Manager, Adobe Pro Video. "Productions is already being used on David Fincher’s upcoming film 'Mank' – which is going to be amazing, by the way – and early versions of the underlying technology were battle tested on films such as 'Terminator: Dark Fate' and 'Dolemite Is My Name'. Productions provides established professionals and aspiring storytellers with new tools for staying organized, managing multiple projects efficiently and simplifying collaboration."

Adobe Productions: New Collaboration and Productivity for Premiere Pro
Click to enlarge

The evolution of projects within Adobe Premiere Pro was originally limiting Premiere Pro to a single project, no different than limiting a computer drive to a single folder for every file, or a web browser to one tab. Allowing multiple projects was an improvement, but each of them was isolated from each other.

Productions allows projects to be arranged in relation to each other, in whatever manner makes sense for any particular project. A film might be arranged in reels, or episodic television into acts. "The heart of collaboration is when you have multiple editors working on the same content at the same time," says Bedient. "How do you keep track of who’s working on what parts, and how do you make sure not to overwrite each other’s work? We’ve done a lot of work to make sure Productions addresses these very effectively and very simply."

The Production panel plainly indicates who is working on each project within the production, with Project Locking ensuring that nobody else can overwrite your work. Colleagues working on shared local storage can still see the work in progress, and can copy it into their own projects, but can't make any changes until you release it.

At the heart of Productions' technology is "cross-project referencing." If assets are copied between projects, they are not duplicated, which helps keep projects small and fast. Media locations are stored on a per-user basis, which also allows easy transitions as editors bring in footage from sets into the edit suite, or take projects home for editing before reintegrating them into the Production.

Cross-project referencing agency might assign a Production to each client. Assets can be used in any or all projects, again, without duplicating them. The idea is simple, but powerful: organize Productions in any way that makes sense to you, including at the desktop level. Any changes that you make to the file structure in the Finder or Explorer level are updated in the Production, and vice versa.


Adobe Productions: New Collaboration and Productivity for Premiere Pro
Click to enlarge

To extend media management across the entire Production, a single Settings panel allows assigning locations for media, render files, proxies, and more. Tracking progress also takes place in a single window. "Personally I’m always fascinated by the concept of making something very powerful," says Bedient, "that is also very simple to learn and operate."

One of the points that Bedient returned to is that Productions has been tested in real productions in a variety of scenarios, including broadcast, feature film, and documentaries. It has been tested at massive scale, too. "In the thousands of projects within a single production," he says, "and we haven't found any limits for either the number of users or the number of projects."

While it was designed for multiple users on shared storage, Productions offers advantages for the solo editor, too. “Even if I working on a long-term documentary on a laptop," says Bedient, "I would still want to use Productions so that I could use the levels of organization, get the performance benefits, get the efficiency of cross-project referencing, and have a really optimized experiences working with lots and lots of media.”


Adobe Productions: New Collaboration and Productivity for Premiere Pro
Click to enlarge


ADOBE TEAM PROJECTS
Productions works on shared local storage, but Adobe Team Projects brings in cloud-based collaboration. The projects reside in Creative Cloud, and media can be any mix of local and cloud-based as you decide. Normally available only in Adobe for Teams and Enterprise accounts, Adobe is including Team Projects with all individual Creative Cloud accounts through August 17, 2020.

There's no need to worry about projects transitioning between individual Creative Cloud accounts and Team Projects, including after August 17 should someone not wish to continue with Team Projects. Team Projects was always designed with the notion that any individual editor, or VFX or motion graphics artist (Team Projects also works with Adobe After Effects) might "unplug" from the cloud to work remotely, and rejoin the team later. The workflow is seamless between the two states.


ADOBE LIVESTREAM PRESENTATIONS
With the 2020 NAB Show becoming an online-only experience, Adobe is also gathering together many of the customer presentations and product demos that had previously been planned for the stage in Adobe's booth, and streaming them live from April 14-17. A summary of those presentations is below (click to enlarge it), with a more complete overview at Adobe's site, "Get to Great Faster with Premiere Pro and the Adobe Apps".








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