Spurred on by government rebate schemes, Australia’s popularity as a location for long-form film productions is rising. The Rebel Fleet, a dedicated workflow provider in film and digital production, has selected digital infrastructure company Equinix to deploy in its International Business Exchange (IBX) data centre in Sydney. The company also uses Platform Equinix to get instant on-demand access to high-bandwidth low-latency fibre, security and colocation, as well as Equinix Fabric to dynamically connect to digital ecosystems, such as all the major Cloud Service Providers.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics’ Film, Television and Digital Games Survey reported an employment of approximately 55,000 people and a contribution of over $6 billion in value-added to the country’s economy in the financial year 2021-22. The same report confirmed that the film and video production industry accounts for almost half (48.7%) of those employed. Capitalising on this increased demand for high quality digital filmmaking services, The Rebel Fleet provides efficient, customised workflows and skilled crews to suit a film producer’s locations, budget, technical parameters and creative ambitions.
Working with Netflix, Disney, Warner Brothers, Endeavour Content, Blumhouse, Amazon and others, The Rebel Fleet is required to move multi-terabytes of large camera files from a shoot location to its specialist post-production services, which can be located around the world and at its studio in Auckland, New Zealand.
With an increasing number of film productions leveraging rebate schemes to shoot in Australia, Equinix has empowered The Rebel Fleet to enhance the efficiency of its workflow operations and cost effectively transfer large data files from on-location shoots to its specialist post-production teams in visual effects (VFX), digital imaging and editorial studios as quickly as possible. This has enabled post-production teams to collaborate effectively and efficiently, regardless of their geographical locations. This includes the creation of detailed documentation for imaging specifications and metadata capture, ensuring all valuable data easily travels from on-set into post-production.
The Rebel Fleet was founded in 2015 in Auckland and has become a key industry partner in the production process for many large and small shoots in the Australasian and Asia-Pacific region. This includes productions such as Mulan, Lord of the Rings, Rings of Power, Ticket to Paradise, Spiderhead and True Spirit.
The Rebel Fleet provides a complete solution for the technical aspects of the film maker’s production, from camera and lens choices, through to video assist, DIT, Dailies, VFX, and post-production, and then builds a robust and dependable pipeline that promotes collaboration and consistency between departments and vendors. This ranges from colour and workflow through to metadata and collaboration, including remote connectivity.
Due to the sheer scale and size of camera files, The Rebel Fleet can move as much as four, five or six terabytes of data a day for 100 days. As such, high bandwidth connectivity and low latency from Equinix IBX in Sydney to specific locations in the post-production process is essential.
Equinix’s geographical footprint in Australia provides The Rebel Fleet with robust digital infrastructure, physical security and connectivity to all the leading network and cloud service providers, which was an important factor in its decision to select Platform Equinix.
The Rebel Fleet is using Equinix’s IBX data centre in Sydney to connect directly to its production teams in Auckland. With data and applications kept in the same Equinix location, there is no speed performance issue to move large volumes of data. Additionally, Equinix Fabric enables on-demand access to cost-effective services from multiple cloud service providers and establishing private connectivity to clouds for more reliable networking.
Equinix’s global platform and interconnected ecosystems provide a unique environment for The Rebel Fleet to architect customisable infrastructure and manage it through Platform Equinix. The Rebel Fleet has complete visibility into its operations via a single portal, with the flexibility, scalability and reach that it may need to share content across Australia and around the world.
Looking ahead, The Rebel Fleet plans to deploy in Equinix’s IBX data centres in Melbourne and Brisbane, enabling the flexibility to expand the edge of its network further out of Sydney as film shoots require, and quickly tunnel content back to its post-production teams.
According to Michael Urban, CEO, The Rebel Fleet, “Partnering with Equinix has given The Rebel Fleet an efficient and effective future-proof digital infrastructure platform that we can both innovate and expand on as our business grows in Australasia and beyond. Due to the nature of our work, we are often moving content to and from many different locations, so the ability to rapidly access good quality bandwidth connectivity is essential to our success. On any given day we can be moving multiple media files and Equinix ensures we get that footage securely and quickly to the places it needs to go. Importantly, the ability to spin up infrastructure as we need will be a real game-changer for us as we extend our work across Australia.”
Guy Danskine, Managing Director, Equinix Australia, said: “Technology in film production is constantly evolving and like many other industries, access to the very best digital infrastructure is essential to supporting innovation and moving extremely large datasets from one location to another. A key factor to Rebel Fleet’s ongoing success is its ability to access dependable and secure connectivity to get its camera files to its post-production teams as quickly and as cost effectively as possible, regardless of their geographical location. We’re delighted that The Rebel Fleet has chosen Equinix as its digital infrastructure provider which helps them deliver their comprehensive film services to production houses that continue to choose Australia as the preferred location for their shoots.”