|Would it surprise
you to know that Peter Bulcke, Chief Operating Officer
at NT Audio Video Film Labs was a deejay in college?
His love of music stayed with him and eventually
brought him back to the audio business. He couldn’t
Peter worked for AGFA when the company transferred
him to Los Angeles to take over their North American
motion picture division. Tom McCormick of NT Audio
was his first customer for sound negative film.
They always kept in touch and three years ago
McCormick hired Peter to run his company.
“I bring a lot of experience
to the company,” says Bulcke, “and
after Tom brought me in, he kinda stepped back
and said, you run it for me. It’s great
to have the freedom to put everything I’ve
learned into practice and see results. It’s
NT stands for Nancy and Tom,
husband and wife, who are still the owners. They
started the business in 1971 and manufactured
sound systems for commercial motion picture multiplex
theater chains, laboratory and post production
facility screening rooms. Tom eventually switched
to optical recording (1983) and built a lab to
develop optical film.
Today NT is well known for optical
recording. They also do transfers between any
audio format, as well as conforming and evaluation.
Two years ago, the company added a theatre where
they can check audio tracks – all four sound
formats in one session, looking at the same screen.
Although the company’s core business is
audio, last year NT expanded its 7 year old video
facility. Its Hollywood office has editorial rooms,
offers telecine transfers and dubbing.
NT does optical sound tracks
for many of the major feature film releases, so
their customers are not only the studio post production
people, but also the major LA labs Deluxe and
Technicolor. Peter says it’s important to
have a good rapport with other labs, because the
time between finishing post production and the
release is so squeezed, that one mistake can be
lethal to the release. “Ultimately we are
partners with the laboratories in order to serve
our common customers,” he explains. “I
think we find a very good way of working with
A source of pride for Peter
Bulcke is the fact that NT Audio & Video has
a very low turnover rate among employees. A family
environment created and cultivated over the years
has resulted in a team with the same philosophy.
“In the grand scheme of business, I think
the employee is the most important,” he
emphasizes. “You take care of your employees
and keep them happy and you automatically keep
your customers.” Even though NT has sales
people, Bulcke believes that all of the employees
are sales people, because sooner or later, everyone
in the company gets in front of the customer.
When it comes to membership
in ACVL, Peter is very clear about the benefits.
“At one time or another, you need an organization
to take care of your interests as a laboratory,”
explains Peter. “As a group you become a
force to be reckoned with – in a good sense.”
Secondly, he believes that it’s
important to have a forum to discuss issues and
exchange ideas. He continues: “I have the
task of making money for my company, so I need
to talk with my peers to gauge what we are doing
and what we should be doing.”
He says that ACVL is a group
of good people and he enjoys being among peers
because there are common threads. “For me
personally, getting involved in ACVL has provided
relationships outside of the normal day’s
work. It’s important to know what’s
going on in the industry.”
Peter & his wife Mia have
three grown girls who have left home. Lately he’s
been editing videos of his family through the
years, still learning and studying like he always
has and always will.
Running NT Audio & Video
suits him and challenges him. He has passion for
it and a sense of humor, summing it all up in
a sentence. “So now I have picture and sound,
I guess I’m a complete person!”