Spice Shop Installs Scanity Film Scanner

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Mon, 02/13/2012 - 19:00 -- Nick Dager

The Spice Shop Bangkok Thailand is the first commercial post facility in Southeast Asia to install a Scanity film scanner from DFT Digital Film Technology. In addition to providing a full range of post production services for the local and international television and cinema commercial markets Spice Shop has recently unveiled it's newly renovated facility which enhances its service offerings to support feature film post production including on-set and post grading 3D DCI mastering as well as archive & restoration work.  The Scanity high-speed 4K/2K film scanner complements Spice Shop's existing and upgraded data infrastructure and supports the overall non-linear system of solutions that allows Spice Shop to have a smooth and efficient online and offline workflow. Scanity's scan-once approach to film scanning allows Spice Shop to generate all required content from one 2K digital negative scan. Whether the content is for offline work using QuickTime or MXF files or online work that requires uncompressed HD files with low-resolution proxies for editing the high speed and efficiency of Scanity means Spice Shop only has to handle the film once. The flexibility of the scan-once approach lets Spice Shop quickly access images across its fibre optic network to easily accommodate last minute editorial changes re-framing zooms etc. Since all files are available digitally at 2K high resolution there is no need to re-scan any frames. This unique workflow saves Spice Shop's clients time money and provides quality improvements throughout the entire post-production process. A typical 2K commercial workflow at Spice Shop involves using Scanity for 35 mm scanning to a central DVS storage network. A one light grade using a Filmlight Baselight 4 is executed while scans are still being performed in the background. After grading QuickTimes or MXF files are rendered for offline editing after which the final EDL is loaded into Baselight for conforming with the one light grade applied. The final grading is performed at 2K and then rendered at HD. At this stage the files are ready to be accessed by the visual effects and CGI department who use Autodesk Flame visual effects software and various CGI compositing and finishing tools including; Maya Houdini Nuke After Effects and 3DS Max to finalize the project. For digital cinema commercials Spice Shop utilizes a DVS Clipster for DCI mastering and final deliverables creation. Within a few days of installation we have already used Scanity for both local and international productions and we are highly satisfied with its user and workflow advantages and our clients were astounded at the improvement in picture quality says Matthew Szabo director of operations at Spice Shop. Our infrastructure and services have always been centered on flexibility and speed and Scanity stands alone when it comes to speed quality and overall system efficiency. In addition the fact that we also generate a 2K digital negative with Scanity provides our clients with a sense of security and peace of mind. In addition to our television and digital cinema commercial work we have a keen interest in the archive and restoration market says Pawadee Chantanom general manager and executive producer of Spice Shop. There is a strong cultural demand to protect and restore our social history and heritage and we already have the toolset required to support archive work. Now that we have Scanity our archive & restoration toolset is complete. We are making positive inroads into the Asia Pacific market and Spice Shop's purchase reaffirms the fact that Scanity is the fastest and most versatile film scanner available today says Stefan Kramper managing director of DFT Digital Film Technology. Whether Scanity is used for traditional post production film scanning or the archive market it serves many scanning applications and provides facilities with an all encompassing toolset.' DFT Digital Film Technology www.dft-film.com ,3090
Tintin Takes Performance Capture to New Levels,2012-02-14, Virtual production driven in a large part by real-time Digital Entertainment Creation software from Autodesk has evolved significantly since the process was used for the landmark release of Avatar in 2009. Peter Jackson's New Zealand-based Weta Digital studio long known for its technological innovation used Autodesk software to take the virtual production process to new levels of real-time performance capture for the animated feature film The Adventures of Tintin. Steven Spielberg's take on the character created by Belgian artist Hergé is an unqualified box office and critical success – with a growing box office gross of over $360 million worldwide – and is one of the 20 highest grossing films of 2011. Reviews have praised the immersive stereoscopic 3D experience together with the unique combination of performance capture and photorealistic filmmaking for an animated movie. The ability to digitally capture the subtleties of an actor's performance and to move digital environment data between pre-production production and post-production has opened up the moviemaking experience ” says Joe Letteri Weta Digital senior VFX supervisor. “We're able to build a virtual set that gives directors the ability to construct shots with the actors in the environment just like they would on a live-action set. The data captured on set is used for lighting modeling textures and the rest of the post-production process. While the underlying technology is similar to what we used on 'Avatar ' we had a better understanding of the tools we needed and were able to realize workflow improvements that enabled us to streamline the movement of capture data from the set to final production.” The virtual moviemaking process for Tintin included Weta Digital artists previsualizing and building the digital environment of the film in low resolution using Autodesk Maya 3D animation and visual effects software and loading that data into the virtual environment. The live performance of the actors on set was captured using Autodesk MotionBuilder real-time 3D character animation software providing a consistent platform that enabled production teams to more rapidly create iterate and refine the look of the movie throughout the production. Applying virtual production techniques to a fully computer-generated film meant Weta Digital was able to create an on-set environment that connected to the visual effects process and allowed Steven Spielberg to work the way he would on a live-action set. He was able to craft his shots and get the take he was looking for all within the context of the world of Tintin. The actors were not only able to interact with each other live on-set they could interact with props and fully inhabit the world in body and in voice. Autodesk's latest technology is enabling filmmakers to enter an incredible new world of moviemaking says Marc Petit senior vice president Autodesk Media & Entertainment. It is helping make the techniques accessible to a broader range of filmmakers and enabling them to better express and exhibit their artistic intent. What Weta's artists and innovators have been able to accomplish by animating and imbuing these beloved fictional animated characters with human performance is truly spectacular. The Adventures of Tintin is certainly the new high-water mark for virtual productions and recently won the Golden Globe for Best Animated Feature Film. Weta Digital strives to bring innovative technology to further what is visually possible says Sebastian Sylwan chief technology officer Weta Digital. Our technology requirements tend to be complex and we work with research institutions industry partners and technology leaders like Autodesk to create the most sophisticated tools we can for our artists. For The Adventures of Tintin we benefited from customized technology support from Autodesk to help us get the virtual production process running as efficiently as possible. The process of creating a scene from the Bagghar marketplace where Tintin and Captain Haddock are being followed by the twins Thomson and Thompson for the film The Adventures of Tintin  (left to right: motion capture take camera diagnostic cloth and hair pass and final image) © 2011 Paramount Pictures All Rights Reserved. Image courtesy of Weta Digital. To find out more about how Weta Digital used Autodesk software in the making of Tintin visit: http://area.autodesk.com/tintin Autodesk www.autodesk.com