Breaking In Ringling's Post-Production Facility with The Brothers Long

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With the ribbon-cutting barely two weeks ago, the new post-production facility at the Ringling College Studio Labs already has its first guests, with actor and filmmaker Justin Long (Galaxy Quest, Live Free or Die Hard) and writer/producer brother Christian Long (The Real Stephen Blatt) arriving on the Ringling College campus this week to shape up their latest project, produced by Semkhor Productions. “I’m sure this will be the tiniest footnote in the history of this place, which is capable of so much,” says Justin, “but we’re just sort of breaking it in.”

Currently at work editing a proof of concept short for a new web-series, the Long brothers have for the last two days posted up in one of the editing suites in the Ringling College Studio Labs, where editor Taylor Hicks—“The Taylor Hicks,” interjects Justin—works the computer while the trio sift through footage and staple the short together. An absurdist take on the talk show format, the yet-untitled project puts hosting duties in the hands of a pair of four-year-old twin girls, who grill their unwitting guests with increasingly pointed questions fed by the Longs. It’s a concept the brothers are excited for, and actor Jake Johnson volunteered his time and talent gratis for the pilot, but working with child actors has its challenges, and now the team has 2.5 hours of footage, from which they’ll grab maybe a few minutes of final product.

Enter the comfy chairs and state-of-the-art tech in the editing suite, where movie magic comes at the click of a mouse. And that’s just one room in the facility, which also holds soundstages for sets or live musical performances, a foley room, screening rooms, a color correction bay and more. “You could shoot a whole movie here,” says Justin. “You could record a whole symphony.”

This time around, the Longs admit to using only a fraction of the facility’s potential. “It’s like taking a professional baseball mitt that will one day be used by–” Justin pauses and looks to his brother.

“Bryce Harper,” Christian offers.

“Bryce Harper,” Justin agrees, “but just letting a little league borrow it.”

“In this analogy, we’re the little league?” asks Christian, looking perhaps less than pleased with this development. “It’s maybe accurate, but not exactly flattering.” Absent another analogy, he offers explanation. “This facility can do so much,” he clarifies, “but we only need a small bit for our purposes.”

“This time,” says Justin.

Pictured, from left: Christian Long, Justin Long and Taylor Hicks work on their latest project in the Ringling College Studio Labs Post Production Facility. Photo by Rich Schineller.

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