HITS Spring: Azure’s Sloss Touts Cloud Editing Advantages

UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif. — Paramount’s production of Ang Lee’s next film, “Gemini Man,” is seeing the famed director recording at 6K, in stereoscopic 3D, at 120 frames per second, per eye. Now, imagine trying to handle that amount of content in a simple, on-premise edit bay.

“The results are incredible, but it’s a very future-looking technology, handling that kind of data, you can’t do that any other way besides leveraging the scale of the cloud,” said Joel Sloss, senior lead of media and entertainment security for Microsoft Azure, speaking May 23 at the annual HITS Spring event.

His presentation — “Get it to the Cloud (Evolving Your Edit Pipeline)” was a follow-up to a similar talk he gave in April during the Cybersecurity & Content Protection Summit at NAB, covering not only the benefits of moving production editing to the cloud, but also sharing how to secure the editorial environment, in order to enable cloud-scale workflows in both hybrid and cloud-native architectures, allowing editors to work from anywhere in the world.

“What’s leading us to editorial in the cloud is there’s just so much new content,” Sloss said. “The infrastructure needed to do that is getting so great. Doing it on premise, in an edit bay, is being restricted.”

Working in the cloud allows companies to take advantage of talent around the world, instead of just locally. It allows for AI processing, intelligent storage with metadata and analytics, virtual, browser-based workstations that can handle higher resolutions and high-dynamic range, and authenticated, encrypted storage and isolated networks over private links, Sloss added.

And what’s crucial with the cloud is being able to rely on it in a secure fashion. That’s where things like the Trusted Partner Network (TPN) come into play, with the industrywide security initiative looking to simplify the security assessment process for Hollywood’s vendor community.

“It is possible to have an internet-facing presence that isn’t open to the rest of the internet,” Sloss said. “You have protection and control of the data.”

HITS Spring was presented by Entertainment Partners, with sponsorship by LiveTiles, 5th Kind, Amazon Web Services, Birlasoft, Exactuals, Expert System, MarkLogic, Microsoft Azure, Richey May Technology Solutions, SoftServe, Spark Digital, Avanade, CDSA, Cinelytic, EIDR, MicroStrategy, Signiant, the Trusted Partner Network, human-I-T, and Zaszou IT Consulting.

The event was produced by the Media & Entertainment Services Alliance (MESA) and the Hollywood IT Society (HITS), in association with Women in Technology: Hollywood (WiTH); CDSA; and the Smart Content Council.

To download the audio of the Microsoft Azure presentation, click here. To download the slide deck, click here.