Idea Factories: Outpost Digital -- Comfortable on the Edge

When Evan Schechtman was 8 years old, he connected his computer to the TV, even though his dad told him he couldn't do that.

In film school, Schechtman's teachers told him he wouldn't touch a computer until his senior year, so he dropped out and started his own postproduction company. When he decided to make a desktop computer his main editing tool, people told him he couldn't do that, either.

"Everyone really did tell me to my face that I was fooling around with toys," says Schechtman in the high-tech conference room of Outpost Digital's New York City office. "'Kid, you can't do it that way.'"

These days, Schechtman spends his time telling clients what he can do. And at the intersection of today's technology and Schechtman's drive, there appear to be no limits.

"We work with a broadcast mentality and a broadcast discipline, even if it's for the Web, because these days it doesn't look like garbage on the Internet," Schechtman says.

Outpost, which also has facilities in Los Angeles, implements complex postproduction projects for online and offline content, including movies, music videos, branded videos, Webisodes, and more. In 2001, Outpost became a subsidiary of @Radical Media, itself a leader in innovative media and entertainment content.

"We have clients who are looking to do nontraditional things," Schechtman says. But he urges them to go even further, persuading them to take chances with new media and technology. He helped convince Warner Bros. it was possible - and faster - to use Flash to animate Superman, who appeared in award-winning Webisodes for American Express.

Radical and Outpost's credits include Jay-Z's "Fade to Black," the Sundance Channel's "Iconoclasts" series, and Axe's multimedia "Gamekillers" campaign, which was so successful it was spun into a Web-exclusive reality series. Their current projects include, intended to be an easy-to-use, visually rich resource for potential car buyers, and an online documentary series dubbed "Bold Moves" for Ford.

"I love tech, I really do," Schechtman says. "I'll always be on the cutting edge, because I want to be, not because I have to be."

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