So you saw The Mandalorian, or Matt Workman’s Unreal Engine promo video, or you might just be keeping up with new film technology, and now you want to know how you can get started in this new industry of Virtual Production. The barrier to entry is incredibly low, but the expense increases relative to how pro you want to go. The best part of learning this process is, even if you start at the entirely free level, all of the skills you pick up will translate all the way to the LED volume you are dreaming about.

With this page…

Virtual production for live action filmmaking is well on its way to complete market proliferation, quicker than any filmmaking tool in recent memory. Even gimbals took a few years for mainstream adoption, whereas VP seems to have become an available and viable option nearly overnight. With COVID precautions and live events shutting down, using robocams and virtual sets made of live stage LED walls has become the new standard for more than a few studios around the world.

Those of us who have been watching the film world for the past decade know this isn’t truly an overnight success. Back…

This is part of an ongoing series of virtual production case studies.

All images courtesy of 3rd Films.

Production Companies: 3rd Films, Spacedogs BDE LLC

Screen Hardware Provider: Jargon Entertainment

Location: Santa Clarita, CA

Project: Escape Velicity Pitch Trailer

The production company 3rd Films, headed by Don Bitters III, recently shot their inaugural virtual production project in Los Angeles. Don describes the project as a sci-fi action-adventure series with a much bigger scope than a production of this size would usually tackle. As a partnership between all three companies, this project was their first steps into LED stage technology.

When it comes to the bleeding edge of cinema technology, Virtual Production is about as new as new gets. The potential for small, well equipped stages to film interiors, exteriors and anything else required in one place has the entire film industry weighing their options. Many live news productions have already adopted these methods and use them on a daily basis. What all virtual productions have in common is the need to understand where the camera is, both in real and virtual space, and there are a few different solutions for this.

Most of these hardware tracking systems rely on…

This is part of an ongoing series of virtual production case studies.

Production Company: JP Connelly

Location: Los Angeles

Client: TBS Celebrity Show Off

The production studio JP Connelly, headed by James P. Connelly, recently produced some stunning virtual production pieces for Celebrity Show Off on TBS. Originally beginning as a television production design studio, they started using digital pre-visualization techniques 6 years ago. This allowed their clients more options, cutting down on the time needed to make changes. …

The virtual production space is currently incredibly difficult to understand from the outside looking in, as there are only a few pieces that do not change drastically depending on production. With this article, I endeavor to standardize a simple terminology for complex setups.

Virtual production as a term can refer to many different real-time engine productions. However, here I am speaking specifically about virtual production as it pertains to live-action filmmaking with a camera and engine working in tandem. …

Drew Viehmann

Filmmaker and writer fascinated by Virtual Production

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