Storytelling Was Just the Beginning

Take a peek behind the scenes of 48 HOURS: NCIS with the visionary team as they talk about bringing stories to life with Mezzanine.

Susan Zirinsky, senior executive producer of the award-winning crime and justice series 48 HOURS, was working up another of her periodic side projects, dubbed “real NCIS.” The idea was to look back at real-world crime cases of the Naval Command Investigative Service (NCIS) upon which the popular CBS series NCIS starring Mark Harmon was based.

Zirinsky’s initial concern was how to make historical content come alive.

It was after director Rob Klug had his first meeting at Oblong that he convinced Zirinski to buy into Mezzanine based only on how the three-dimensional immersion of Infopresence transformed their source material. As Klug put it, they decided to put the viewer at home inside the Mezzanine control center of NCIS.

It’s no surprise to us at Oblong that Mezzanine also streamlined the very creation and subsequent production of the CBS news division documentary series, but for Klug and Zirinski, it was a revelation.

The efficiencies exceeded their expectations. “We can load all of our information into the computer and use it immediately,” Klug said. “It happens really quickly.” The team also realized how much they could do live that would normally require postproduction. “We’re able to manipulate things and change things on the fly in real time all day long.”

The amount of time this has saved is immeasurable,” agreed Ron Hill, CBS director of photography. “It enabled us to move elements in and out of frame,” he continued, which is usually done in post. “Doing it real time allows so much creativity.

We at Oblong are big fans of excellent storytelling. To see the award-winning 48 HOURS team bringing forward true stories of the NCIS with Mezzanine is really exciting. Join us in watching the series premiere on April 25, 2017, 10pm ET/PT.

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