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Arlington Production Company Finds New Home in Courthouse

Henninger Media Services, a production company with ties to Discovery Channel, National Geographic and Oscar-winning documentaries, has found a new home in Courthouse.

The production company is responsible for “finishing” videos, whether it be a show on National Geographic or a documentary that wins an Academy Award. In finishing, or post production, specialists at the company edit the film, color and audio in order to make a show look cleaner. It’s very much a behind the scenes job — if it’s done correctly, a viewer wouldn’t realize that anything had been done.

In addition to editing, the company also does design work, such as creating the main menu on a DVD, and archive work, including helping the National Archives.

The company’s new space is tucked away at 1320 N. Courthouse Road, near the Arlington County Police Department and county government offices. It was previously located on Wilson Blvd, next to Earl’s Sandwiches. Although slightly hidden, the company’s new office on the first floor of the building is anything but small.

The company has 13 editing suites, six audio studios, three color correction suites, two quality control rooms, a voice recording studio, various administrative and design spaces and the “core,” where it hosts all the servers and technology needed to run a production company. Henninger bills itself as “the largest production/post-production company in the Mid-Atlantic.”

“It is relatively rare that one company houses all the expertise,” said Mike Weiss, vice president of Business Development.

The new move allowed Henninger Media Services to have a fresh start when it came to the technology in the office, said CEO Robert Henninger. The space now uses fiber glass cables with the capability to run videos in ultra high definition, one of the newest trends in video.

“It gave us a lot of flexibility in terms of technical capability,” Weiss said. “It modernized us.”

Innovation and embracing new technology is one of the five core values of the company, Henninger said, with the other four being quality, service, teamwork and creativity.

These five values have helped Henninger Media Services, which was founded in 1983, become the company it is today, he said.

Today, the company works with big names like Discovery Channel, National Geographic and PBS, where they put finishing touches on shows and documentaries run on the networks. It also works with corporations, such as Capital One, small businesses, colleges, such as American University, and political campaigns.

The company declined to list some of the well-known television programs it works on, citing confidentiality agreements, but one such program — verified independently by ARLnow.com — is “Gold Rush: Alaska,” one of the Discovery Channel’s top-rated series.

Henninger Media Services worked with President Barack Obama’s first campaign to help edit a 30-minute paid ad. They also worked with Sen. John McCain when he ran against George W. Bush in a presidential primary.

Political campaigns are a specialty because they have an intense workload and very quick deadline.

“You have to really be prepared to do what it takes,” Henninger said.

The company has also worked with Oscar-winner documentary “Innocente.” The company has done multiple projects with directors Sean and Andrea Fine, as well as Sean’s father, who was also a director.

“We were part of the team that won an Oscar,” Henninger said.

In addition to the many non-fiction films that company works with, Henninger said he would like to get involved with feature films.

“Doing some fiction work would be fun,” he said.

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