Sound Stages

A Garden Grows in London

Mon, 01/18/2021 - 10:49 -- Nick Dager

Late last year, as was widely reported, the investment firm Arts Alliance opened Garden Studios, a 62,000-square-foot facility located in Park Royal, West London. Arts Alliance founder and CEO Thomas Hoegh said at the time, “This will be an owner-operated business, spearheaded by people who have long and deep experience across many aspects of the film industry with success stories like Picturehouse Cinemas, Love Film, Arts Alliance Media, Met Film School and Park Circus under our belts. Like all Arts Alliance companies, we seek to demonstrate an innovative and passionate drive for inclusive community building, learning, and opportunities for all.” In all his businesses Hoegh says, “My principal task is not to be in the way.” I recently spoke via email with Hoegh and Garden Studios CTO Rich Phillips to learn more about this latest venture.

Keeping Pace

Mon, 12/28/2020 - 10:06 -- Nick Dager

The future of independent film production in a post-covd-19 world is taking “virtual” shape at Pace Pictures in Hollywood. The boutique facility recently used groundbreaking virtual production technology to produce Match, a feature-length romantic comedy from director Sean McGinly (Silver Lake, The Great Buck Howard). Actors were shot on a green screen stage and placed into virtual three-dimensional environments while incorporating complex camera movement and lighting. Most remarkably, principal photography was accomplished in just five days and at a fraction of the cost of most conventional film productions.

Overcoming Cinematography Challenges in the age of COVID

Sun, 12/13/2020 - 12:20 -- Nick Dager

This Wednesday, December 16, at 11:00 a.m. PST, G-Technology’s Martin Christien is hosting a live Zoom conversation with cinematographers Eve Cohen and Jim Geduldick to discuss the various challenges that they have each encountered recently in the midst of the pandemic regarding schedules, production workflows, products/gear, and ensuring safety within physical and virtual production spaces.

First Virtually Produced Feature Underway

Tue, 11/17/2020 - 09:14 -- Nick Dager

Signs of life for the movie industry have just been spotted on Mars. A group of veteran Hollywood filmmakers have announced plans for Gods of Mars, a feature-length sci-fi epic, to be produced through a blend of revolutionary virtual production technology and special effects techniques from the original Star Wars era. Providing a possible blueprint for filmmaking’s future, the hybrid technique allows productions to move quickly, and at a fraction of the cost of today’s $200-plus million studio blockbusters.

ILM Announces Expansion Plans

Mon, 09/14/2020 - 09:41 -- Nick Dager

Industrial Light & Magic has announced the next phase of its global expansion plan for the company’s virtual production and StageCraft LED volume services. This expansion of services is tied to a proactive initiative for increasing diversity in the industry by combining ILM’s growth in this innovative methodology with a global trainee program geared for underrepresented VFX talent.

Creating the Worlds of Ready Player One

Wed, 04/04/2018 - 11:41 -- Nick Dager

Steven Spielberg’s Ready Player One features two separate worlds. Each features very different realities and each required a different approach to filming. One depicts a fractured, dystopian future, while the other is filled with infinite possibilities. To help create this, Audiomotion, in collaboration with Digital Doman, relied on Vicon optical systems.

MoCap Makes Maz Kanata Go

Tue, 01/30/2018 - 12:44 -- Nick Dager

In a pivotal moment in Lucasfilm’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi, the CGI character Maz Kanata, played by Oscar-winner Lupita Nyong’o, shows up just in time to give the Rebels a vital piece of information. Although Maz’s appearance is brief, the complex shoot involved creating a temporary, studio-grade motion capture stage inside the famed Pinewood Studios. To complete this task, Lucasfilm turned to Audiomotion and its Vicon system.

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