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Imported iPhone Footage Color Messed Up in After Effects

New Here ,
Dec 31, 2022 Dec 31, 2022

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I'm having an issue importing footage taken from my iPhone 12 into After Effects where the color seems significantly different from the original footage. I had a similar problem in Premiere Pro previously, but by using Display Color Management, enabling Extended Dynamic Range Monitoring, and exporting in the Rec 2100 HLG color space, I was able to solve the issue there. 


I've tried converting the original video file (which is an HEVC file, ending in .MOV) to ProRes, to H.264, then importing it into After Effects, and neither work. I've tried changing the Working Space of the project to every available color gamut, and same with the footage itself (going to Interpret Footage > Main > Color Management). Display Color Management was on the whole time. Esssentially, no amount of messing the color management in After Effects gave me any success.


I suspect the issue has to do with the color profile that my iPhone records footage. The files it outputs are HEVC, and when I inspect the video files, this is the color space info it provides:


Color Primaries: ITU-R BT.2020

Transfer Function: ITU-R BT.2100 (HLG)

YCbCr Matrix: ITU-R BT.2020


To me, it seems that the iPhone doesn't record in a single color space: the primaries are in Rec 2020, and the transfer function is from Rec 2100. I'm not sure if this interpretation is correct, but it would mean that with the presets in After Effects it is impossible to have it correctly interpret my footage, since the footage doesn't conform to either Rec 2020 or Rec 2100.


Does anybody have any ideas about what the problem might be and how I could fix it? I'm not very well versed in this color management stuff, so if the problem is what I described in the previous paragraph, is there any way I can create a custom working space in After Effects, or interpret footage in a custom color space?


I can't take a screenshot to document the issue properly because when I take a screenshot of my footage opened in QuickTime the screenshot is very blown out. Instead, the image attached is taken on my phone of my laptop screen—on the left left is the original video file opened in QuickTime, and on the right is the file when I import it into After Effects.

Error or problem , Import and export






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