So I'm rendering a comp and it's taking forever. I turn the little arrow down next to "Current Render" in the render queue and I see it running through all the operations fine, then suddenly it freezes at:
Stage: Retrieving Frame
... and stays frozen for about a minute. So I stop the render, go into the Title_01 comp and, not surprisingly, layer five is a particle layer (TC Particular, making about 2000 particles per second).
But here's the weird. I disable the layer (turn off the little eye) but when I render it again, I get the same thing - it hangs at "Layer 5, Retrieving frame)" for a minute or so.
I then delete the particular layer altogether and render again, but I get the same thing - "Layer 5, Retrieving Frame" for about a minute. (At this stage, Layer five is a Null Object).
Does anyone have any thoughts on what's going on here? Is that Current Render Progress thing even accurate? There's nothing else in the project that is anywhere near as complicated as the particle layer. I've purged everything a number of times and even switched to a different computer, but it hasn't made a difference.
2x6 Core Mac Pro, 16GB RAM, OSX 10.6.7, Adobe CS5.
Okay, so I appear to have found the culprit.
Okay, so the problem turned out to be more complicated than that.
It actually came from a missing font used in a text layer - but only when it was being used as an alpha matte, and only when the footage layer using it as a mask had any filters applied to it.
Downright weird if you ask me, but there you go.