Sohonet Spotlight on: Cinelab London’s John Mahtani

Cinelab London, aka Europe’s leading Film Lab, remains ‘the’ go to place for individuals in search of high-quality film and digital restoration services. You don’t have to take our word for it, their recent credits include the blockbuster hits Star Wars, Episode 8: The Last Jedi, The Phantom Thread and The Mercy as well as commercials for Burberry, Nike, MINI USA, Smirnoff, Johnnie Walker and Sky Cinema.

Since opening their doors back in 2013, they now count the world’s major studios, independents, production houses and archives as clients. So with business booming, John Mahtani, CCO at Cinelab, talks us through the challenge of delivering large amounts of digitised film rushes from their UK facility to their clients worldwide, and how Sohonet’s accelerated file-transfer tool FileRunner is helping them out.

John, where does FileRunner fit into your workflow and what key challenge does it solve?

Shooting on film has had a huge revival in recent years, with film-makers across both feature-length film and commercials choosing to return to the medium.  To better highlight this growth, in 2015, we worked on 15 commercials, by 2016 this was at 26 and last year the number hit 157.

So suddenly we’re dealing with a lot more work and a lot more content. The bulk of which is delivered to us in a physical form, we then process and digitise the footage.

We then need to return all this footage to various clients securely and quickly. This is where FileRunner comes in.

Can you tell us how you’re using FileRunner?

We use FileRunner to deliver files to our clients, which they like because it’s secure and simple to use. To understand the scale of how much we use this product, in 2017 we’ve sent files to over 400 clients across 40 different countries. In January alone, we sent close to 300 packages to nearly 500 individuals. That’s over 5 TB we delivered.

How were you delivering these files pre-FileRunner?

Prior to using Filerunner we used an FTP site which meant we had to walk every client on how to download the file.  With Filerunner there’s no hand-holding, it’s self-explanatory whilst remaining secure.

Big question… Would you recommend FileRunner to your industry peers?

The response from our team is great and our clients love FileRunner’s ease of use and the simplicity of the browser-based interface. Being encrypted and secure also ticks the boxes for our clients and us.

Electronic file delivery has now become a significant part of our delivery workflow as with many organisations within this industry. We have a great relationship with the Sohonet team and wouldn’t hesitate to recommend FileRunner to companies looking to share large files quickly and securely.