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Apple has officially responded to the recent open letter from Final Cut Pro editors to Tim Cook.

A few weeks ago, an open letter to Tim Cook at Apple was published. In the letter, it asked if Apple could do more to develop and promote Final Cut Cut Pro, especially to the film and television sector.

Over a hundred credited editors added their names to the letter and it got a very public delivery. Well, now Apple has officially replied and we have printed the full response below.

 

To the authors of the recent open letter regarding Final Cut Pro in the TV and film industry: the creative community has always been so important to us at Apple, and we’re grateful for your feedback.

There have been many compelling projects created to date with Final Cut Pro — from Hollywood movies and high-profile commercials, to major television shows and impressive work by the biggest names in online content creation.

While we believe we have plans in place to help address your important feature requests, we also recognize the need to build on those efforts and work alongside you to help support your film and TV projects and keep you posted on important updates. This includes taking the following steps:

  • Launching new training products and Apple-authorized certifications for pro video starting this month with our partner Future Media Concepts.
  • Establishing a panel of industry experts for regular consultations, starting this summer
  • Expanding the content and frequency of Final Cut Pro workshops for major film and television productions.

We would love to work with you to help support your film and TV projects, and we will continue to explore opportunities that allow us to better connect and foster important dialogue with our devoted community of users going forward.

 

We welcome the reply from Apple, the middle sentence is the key one for us that indicates it does have plans to implement new features now that we have 'rolled off' the end of the famous ten year roadmap. 

It will be interesting to see what comes next, WWDC might bring an update. 

 

 


Written by
Top BloggerThought Leader

I am the Editor-in-Chief of FCP.co and have run the website since its inception ten years ago.

I have also worked as a broadcast and corporate editor for over 30 years, starting on one inch tape, working through many formats, right up to today's NLEs.

Under the name Idustrial Revolution, I have written and sold plugins for Final Cut Pro for 13 years.

I was made a Freeman of Lichfield through The Worshipful Company of Smiths (established 1601). Though I haven't yet tried to herd a flock of sheep through the city centre!

Current Editing

great house giveaway 2020

2020 has been busy, the beginning of the year was finishing off a new property series (cut on FCP) for Channel 4 called The Great House Giveaway. I also designed and built the majority of the graphics as Motion templates. It has been a great success and the shows grabbed more viewers in the 4pm weekday slot than any previous strand. It has been recommissioned by C4 for 60 episodes, including prime-time versions and five themed programmes. The shows have also been nominated for a 2021 BAFTA.

Tour de france 2020
Although both were postponed to later in the year, I worked again on ITV's coverage of the Tour de France and La Vuelta. 2020 was my 25th year of editing the TdF and my 20th year as lead editor. The Tour was the first broadcast show to adopt FCPX working for multiple editors on shared storage.

 

BBC snooker the crucible

BBC's Snooker has played a big part in my life, I've been editing tournament coverage since 1997. I'm proud to be part of a very creative team that has pioneered many new ideas and workflows that are now industry standard in sports' production. This is currently an Adobe Premiere edit.

amazon kindle BF

Covid cancelled some of the regular corporate events that I edit such as trade shows & events. I was lucky however to edit, from home, on projects for Amazon Kindle, Amazon Black Friday, Mastercard and very proud to have helped local charitable trust Kendall & Wall secure lottery funding.

As for software, my weapon of choice is Final Cut Pro and Motion, but I also have a good knowledge and broadcast credits with Adobe Premiere Pro, MOGRT design and Photoshop.

Plugin Design & Development

I'm the creative force behind Idustrial Revolution, one of the oldest Final Cut Pro plugin developers. It hosts a range of commercial and free plugins on the site. One free plugin was downloaded over a thousand times within 24 hours of release.

I also take on custom work, whether it is adapting an existing plugin for a special use or designing new plugins for clients from scratch. Having a good knowledge of editing allows me to build-in flexibility and more importantly, usability.

FCP.co

Now in its 10th year and 4th redesign, running FCP.co has given me knowledge on how to run a large CMS- you are currently reading my bio from the database! Although it sounds corny, I am pretty well up on social media trends & techniques, especially in the video sector. The recent Covid restrictions has enabled live FCP.co shows online. This involves managing a Zoom Webinar through Restream.io to YouTube and Facebook. 

The Future

I'm always open to new ideas and opportunities, so please get in touch at editor (at) fcp.co. I've judged film competitions, presented workflow techniques to international audiences and come up with ideas for TV shows and software programs!

 

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Daniel Rutledge's Avatar
Daniel Rutledge replied the topic: #120629 19 May 2022 14:26
I have been wondering about this lately. The trickle of useful but meh updates over the last couple of years reminds me a little of when Apple released FCP 7 and everyone went, "its okay, but is that really it?". I feel like some time in the next year Apple will either release a major upgrade (FCP 11 even if that is not what it is called) or they will move away from film and television all together with a focus on web video creators. They seem to be indicating that they intend to stick with it though. I am optimistic. There is no way they could bungle a new software release worse than they did with FCPX, so I am anticipating only good things.
VTC's Avatar
VTC replied the topic: #120632 19 May 2022 14:59
The less than thrilling updates find me using Resolve more and more since they haven't managed to correct the niggling bugs that persist update after update.

The initial release reeked of 'let's release something even if what's released is a dog'.
.
MojoFix's Avatar
MojoFix replied the topic: #120633 19 May 2022 15:02
Historically, "we would love to work with you" is simply not true. A few years ago Turner saw the value in FCPX but wanted to help develop X with Apple and were flatly refused. Adobe seized that opportunity immediately. Some of the best After Effects artists I know went to work for Apple. I'm guessing they didn't En Masse start using Motion instead. In the glory days of Advertising if your Agency had the Coca-Cola account and you were caught with a Pepsi, you were in trouble. Apple's decisions are income driven, all metrics, all forecasting... the exact opposite of the "Creatives come first" illusion they put forth. Hence, with their new "you have to come into work now so we can keep an eye on you" management decree, they are seeing many employees depart for the next cool thing.
After years of pining for new features, I've accepted that was a waste of my energy, and FCP is just my favorite tool in a large toolbox.
So since actions speak louder than words, I'd have preferred no answer to that insulting response. Shame on the decision to release that, it simply seems like Apple gaslighting us all.
Oliver Peters's Avatar
Oliver Peters replied the topic: #120638 19 May 2022 17:32
We all have a wishlist of features we'd like to see added to FCP. But is that the right direction - both for Apple and for the users?

Realistically, what sort of development do people expect Apple to add to FCP? How complex and convoluted do you want the application to become? How many legacy/obsolete workflows do you expect them to support? If Resolve is the target, then good luck. People always start with the color tools, but how many of those same Resolve users successfully integrate Fusion and Fairlight into their workflows?

Apple has conceived FCP (X) as a "platform" of sorts, which can be augmented in many different ways with third party tools. Do you want Apple to build their own tools in a less-than-focused manner, like everyone else? Or would you rather have speciality developers create those tools and keep the core app streamlined and focused on editing?
Daniel Rutledge's Avatar
Daniel Rutledge replied the topic: #120640 19 May 2022 18:19
I don't think I am often so on the same page with Oliver as I am here. I do like Resolve a lot, and I think all those tools can work, but it is a lot and it can be buggy. But I like FCP for all the reasons Oliver listed. I think there are certain core functionalities that shouldn't be in the hands of 3rd party developers, especially being able to send other departments what they want (omf, aaf, various flavors of xml and edl, etc). I also never understood why they didn't offer a round trip to Motion. But that is getting into the weeds. If FCP is ever going to make a big dent in film and television, I think the big focus would need to be collaboration tools. That is the main reason Avid is so entrenched. Adobe and Blackmagic are making strides. I really hope the next big thing from Apple is really focused on that, and maybe expanding seamless collaboration to remote workflows. As soon as you start talking about third party solutions you've lost the battle.
Oliver Peters's Avatar
Oliver Peters replied the topic: #120641 19 May 2022 18:32
DR: "If FCP is ever going to make a big dent in film and television, I think the big focus would need to be collaboration tools. That is the main reason Avid is so entrenched. Adobe and Blackmagic are making strides."

I'm not sure that's really the main reason. As I've written in a different forum post, in those scenarios (large feature film work, i.e. "Hollywood", network TV, etc) it's not the editor who makes the decision of which NLE to use. These choices are often made by those who have no editing responsibilities whatsoever.

In the case of studio film projects, gear (including software) is generally supplied by trusted vendors who know what fits into the standard workflow pipelines. That's more often than not going to be Avid Media Composer and Pro Tools. Remember that studios want to be able to fire anyone involved. If the editor is on Avid, then there are plenty of qualified replacements.

Only the smaller, indie projects or those with directors with cloud (e.g. Fincher) can push through alternative solutions.
camp's Avatar
camp replied the topic: #120642 19 May 2022 18:56
I am curious about how to be considered for the "panel of industry experts" as I'd love to share my thoughts and feedback!
Stu Wart's Avatar
Stu Wart replied the topic: #120643 19 May 2022 19:14

We all have a wishlist of features we'd like to see added to FCP. But is that the right direction - both for Apple and for the users?

Realistically, what sort of development do people expect Apple to add to FCP? How complex and convoluted do you want the application to become?

  You are joking, right ?

 Well if not.. joking... Realistically :   MANDATORY if serious about pro

- Motion Roundtrip ! c'mon !
- Internal AFF export !!! (the existing external  has limits)
- A updated and better stabilisation
- An usable Noise reduction
- a mixing panel
- a real "Consolidate" ala Avid (exporting rushes as used in Sequence with handle)
- a way to "flatten" edited multicam like legacy Fcp
- collaborative process


minimum if serious about "pro"

Apple answer is pure boring double talk.  we don't want stupids certifications !  we don't need stupid marketing

we need the list above AND THAT'S IT ! Period
Stu Wart's Avatar
Stu Wart replied the topic: #120644 19 May 2022 19:14

We all have a wishlist of features we'd like to see added to FCP. But is that the right direction - both for Apple and for the users?

Realistically, what sort of development do people expect Apple to add to FCP? How complex and convoluted do you want the application to become?

  You are joking, right ?

 Well if not.. joking... Realistically :   MANDATORY if serious about pro

- Motion Roundtrip ! c'mon !
- Internal AFF export !!! (the existing external  has limits)
- A updated and better stabilisation
- An usable Noise reduction
- a mixing panel
- a real "Consolidate" ala Avid (exporting rushes as used in Sequence with handle)
- a way to "flatten" edited multicam like legacy Fcp
- collaborative process


minimum if serious about "pro"

Apple answer is pure boring double talk.  we don't want stupids certifications !  we don't need stupid marketing

we need the list above AND THAT'S IT ! Period
Oliver Peters's Avatar
Oliver Peters replied the topic: #120653 19 May 2022 23:17
SW: "- Motion Roundtrip ! c'mon !
- Internal AFF export !!! (the existing external has limits)
- A updated and better stabilisation
- An usable Noise reduction
- a mixing panel
- a real "Consolidate" ala Avid (exporting rushes as used in Sequence with handle)
- a way to "flatten" edited multicam like legacy Fcp
- collaborative process"

LOL. Not joking at all. I'm all for features if they enhance the workflow. But, let me offer some mild push-back.

- Motion roundtrip? Why? There's no Avid roundtrip to anything and presumably those editors would be the target audience to convert.
- No NLE has great video noise reduction when you compare that to Neat.
- Mixing panel. I would agree, however, I do find the audio roles quite versatile. I do find mixing in Premiere easier, but mastering with stems and export variations are superior in FCP to any other NLE because of roles.
- Agreed on consolidate, but it's not that easy with all media types. Premiere's function is terrible. Avid's is based on Avid media, not linked, native files.
- AAF export. I would agree, although AAF out of Avid is problematic. FWIW, you can export AAF out of Logic. OTOH, most of my Pro Tools mixers still prefer OMF. That's an ancient format that Avid barely supports anymore.
- Flatten Mcam. I know the arguments why this isn't needed, but I'd like to see that, too.
- Collaboration. I'm not sure whether or not that's really needed. What is needed is proper Library or Event locking so that I can open a Library in read-only mode if another editor has it open.
- Better stabilization. Why? FCP currently is equal to what you have in the other NLEs. They are all a crapshoot and success varies with the type of shot.
MidNorth's Avatar
MidNorth replied the topic: #120654 19 May 2022 23:53
I can understand the fixation on features. Collaboration is a big one for sure. It's hard to believe Apple have no awareness of features everybody wants. For Apple it's not just about features. That Apple responded seems a huge deal and cannot be seen as just promising future FCP features, or just PR and lip service. How often do big companies respond with "we want to work with you." I believe Apple when they say they want to work with a panel of experts and expand training to TV and film production. The reason? The bigger picture.

While I applaud Apple for responding, because they could have easily ignore the editors' letter, the response hints at Apple's bigger plan. The editors' letter gave Apple a reason to go public with their strategy and score some PR points. With the increasing foothold of Apple TV+, AR, ARM equipped Macs, iPad Pro, etc, it wouldn't be too much to assume Apple's thinking along this line has been in the works for a while. As their next generation of products and services mature, Apple will deploy resources only they have to gain (again?) professional respect for their pro apps and become dominant in NLE. Don't hate on Apple then for being too big and pushing aside smaller players.
manoucho's Avatar
manoucho replied the topic: #120655 20 May 2022 00:04

Realistically, what sort of development do people expect Apple to add to FCP?

An audio mixeeerrrrrrrrrr :)

(OK now I leave the forum and go back to my editing job, where my client specifically asked me to use Premiere, as it happens so often. GRRR)
Jules1818's Avatar
Jules1818 replied the topic: #120656 20 May 2022 00:23
This is a weak and general response from a media manager at Apple with no passion or conviction in the reply. Lets hope they can contribute a real difference otherwise Blackmagic will rule the roost without a worthy competitor
noah.leon's Avatar
noah.leon replied the topic: #120665 20 May 2022 04:20
Why the heck do y'all want features? I'll settle for STABILITY. On large projects with lots of effects, layers, LUTs, I see my old friend the spinning beach ball a lot. Stability and efficiency are my vote, anything else is nice but without that I'm lost.
NewVideo's Avatar
NewVideo replied the topic: #120666 20 May 2022 06:56
Meanwhile, the entire landscape of modern media communications continues to morph at a lightening pace under our noses. Why do I feel like all this whinging about crap like “features” and “collaboration” are something we’re going to look back on in 10 years and wondered why we spent so much time thinking about this tactical stuff — rather than grappling with the tectonic shifts in global content re-alignment happening all around us? Eyeballs aren’t statistically on “Cinema” so much any more. Certainly not compared to SmartPhone scrolling. You wanna bet on a pre-movie Cinema Screen Ad — or on a TikTok or Facebook adjacency to drive results? Get in the real game, folks. Speed and Agility are todays currency. Not monolithic legacy code bases serving yesterdays thinking and workflows. Right now FCP is still, hands down, the fastest, smartest game in town. It might (or might not) be that forever. But your adaptability to “new everything” will be. I’d stake my future on that.
SurreyMuso's Avatar
SurreyMuso replied the topic: #120667 20 May 2022 10:19
Of course Apple must support and promote to the professional bodies but please also push them to support other groups: Musicians and Universities (both of which I represent). If they were to take the example of Unity (game development), Apple would have huge learning resources, making it easier and more compelling to pick up FCP, rather than any of the alternatives. The cost of entry into FCP, particularly for students, is terrific but having to rely on well-meaning but often low-skilled YouTubers does not present a holistic, end-to-end approach for FCP. Get them young and keep them...
WCely's Avatar
WCely replied the topic: #120668 20 May 2022 12:09

Get them young and keep them...

Agreed.  As much as I wish there was better remote collaboration (better = easier and more robust) and a few of the other features as well, the future of content is not the outdated workflows and ideas we keep begging Apple to put into FCP.  Eventually, the kids who never bothered working in a "professional" environment will be the dominant voice in production, and they'll all have a good laugh at our expense with all our arguing over missing stuff and workflow demands. 
camp's Avatar
camp replied the topic: #120669 20 May 2022 14:07
I just want to see FCP get the love it deserves from Apple to keep me excited.
manoucho's Avatar
manoucho replied the topic: #120672 20 May 2022 14:49
I know how unhappy we all are but I just want to remind us of this

WCely's Avatar
WCely replied the topic: #120673 20 May 2022 14:50
Yeah, very slow to change, but that won't matter when TV and cinema are less than a fraction of the content that's being produced.  TV and film are already so small a segment of what I see my students consume in terms of content that the landscape itself will ultimately dictate how post is completed.
Stu Wart's Avatar
Stu Wart replied the topic: #120674 20 May 2022 14:50

Not trying to morph this into a features-bug discussion, but there is no real need to "flatten" multicam clips.

With the angle viewer closed, only the curreent angle shown in the timeline is being played, just like any other clip. No extra resources are being used. You _can_ still edit things, as needed. Way better than "classic" FCP.

If you have several multicam clips in a timeline and you want to simplify things, you could always make one or more compound clips.

What else about being able to "flatten" multicam clips do you need?


Cheers.

they are many reasons making flatten multicam clips would be way better.
( Resources allocation aside ... and yes an extended multicam project is "heavier" )

and what a  bummer to dive in the multicam for any stab, etc. You need to "recut" the clip inside the Multiclip, bummer and waste of time.

Less control on the Roles for the sound. Same Role for every clip in the Multicam clip. So you lose control on what you send to mix in term of "tracks" , because out of Fcp tracks are back.
WCely's Avatar
WCely replied the topic: #120675 20 May 2022 14:52
"We will attempt to save..." Oh goodness! FCP never has to attempt after a crash.  My students are great at smashing FCP into a crashed submission, and they never lose the progress they've made.
Daniel Rutledge's Avatar
Daniel Rutledge replied the topic: #120677 20 May 2022 15:10
To people who are talking about the changing media landscape or kids learning FCP and they will bring it into the future; that is not as big a part of the story as you think. If you are doing personal projects where you are the lead, or if you are a one man band, then that is fine. I'm sure a bunch of people are making decent money like that doing web videos for clients or producing their own content for YouTube or whatever. But if you are trying to really make a living in the established media environment (I'm not just talking about feature films, everything from corporate videos to Marvel blockbusters, online advertising to prestige documentary series) you do not get to decide for yourself what software you will use. If you are working for a big company, they have invested tens/hundreds of thousands of dollars on equipment, support, and infrastructure. If you are a freelancer (even working remotely on your own gear) they will require you to conform to their workflow. They need to be able to transfer your project to another editor (whether it is because you died, quit, got fired, or they want to switch you to a different project). They go for the lowest common denominator. In broadcast and theatrical, the infrastructure drives everyone to Avid. In lowers end corporate and commercial work, everyone is on Adobe. The only thing that will change either of these is if Apple creates a product that delivers what the industries want or need, and if it is clearly an improvement over what they already have.
Stu Wart's Avatar
Stu Wart replied the topic: #120678 20 May 2022 15:13

SW: "- Motion Roundtrip ! c'mon !
- Internal AFF export !!! (the existing external has limits)
- A updated and better stabilisation
- An usable Noise reduction
- a mixing panel
- a real "Consolidate" ala Avid (exporting rushes as used in Sequence with handle)
- a way to "flatten" edited multicam like legacy Fcp
- collaborative process"

LOL. Not joking at all. I'm all for features if they enhance the workflow. But, let me offer some mild push-back.

- Motion roundtrip? Why? There's no Avid roundtrip to anything and presumably those editors would be the target audience to convert.
- No NLE has great video noise reduction when you compare that to Neat.
- Mixing panel. I would agree, however, I do find the audio roles quite versatile. I do find mixing in Premiere easier, but mastering with stems and export variations are superior in FCP to any other NLE because of roles.
- Agreed on consolidate, but it's not that easy with all media types. Premiere's function is terrible. Avid's is based on Avid media, not linked, native files.
- AAF export. I would agree, although AAF out of Avid is problematic. FWIW, you can export AAF out of Logic. OTOH, most of my Pro Tools mixers still prefer OMF. That's an ancient format that Avid barely supports anymore.
- Flatten Mcam. I know the arguments why this isn't needed, but I'd like to see that, too.
- Collaboration. I'm not sure whether or not that's really needed. What is needed is proper Library or Event locking so that I can open a Library in read-only mode if another editor has it open.
- Better stabilization. Why? FCP currently is equal to what you have in the other NLEs. They are all a crapshoot and success varies with the type of shot.


- Motion roundtrip. Avid doesn't present it so... we don't need it ? What argument is this ? Have it would be great, period. And that would be so easy to implement. Why did they hire Wes Plate anyway ?

- "No NLE has great video noise reduction when you compare that to Neat. ?" hum, I thought Resolve was also a NLE

- yes mixing panel is for pre-mix or what you don't send to mix, great in both cases

- Consolidate ? If Marquee can do it with noreal control (and flaws) Apple can do it ... (from within the app I guess it would be great)

- Flatten : audio Roles ! better control on clips ... bummer to dive in the multicam for any stab, etc

- Collaboration multi-editors is the basis of Avid predominance for some kind of work.

- is absolutly true that success varies for stab between NLE. But stab in Fcp could be way better, so why stay frozen in development ?


Anyway ... main subject : that answer from Apple is a bucket of lukewarm watter
Oliver Peters's Avatar
Oliver Peters replied the topic: #120684 20 May 2022 19:11
This article and the writer's reaction video about After Effects are both worth the time to review.

www.provideocoalition.com/reaction-re-wr...ffects-from-scratch/

There are a lot of parallels to this conversation.