The many impressive references on our realizations from the music and show world have not gone unnoticed in the film industry. That’s probably why the virtual production house and cutting-edge Los Angeles technology company NantStudios asked us to control probably one of the largest LED volumes worldwide enabling them to project immersive computer-generated film scenery.
The purpose-built facility in the heart of Australia’s screen and arts capital Melbourne counts 6 stages totaling more than 10,000 sqm. WI have been commissioned to enable high- precision motion for Stage 1 and 3, allowing NantStudios to move 13 LED ceiling pods.
Stage 1 & Stage 3
Stage 1 (2,323 m2) and second largest stage on the premises has been designed for large scale film and television projects incorporating among many other high tech wizardry a 40 foot tall radiused wall of 6.000 panels and 2 moving LED wall sections at 6 x 9.95 m. Divided across 8 individual pods in Stage 1, WICREATIONS provided a total of 96 hoists to create a complete movable LED ceiling. In Stage 3, a facility specifically designed for small to medium-sized sets and vehicle scenes, another 54 hoists have been installed for its 5 pods, including the biggest of the 13 pods at 14.5 by 3m.
Immersive LED technology
Classic recording is usually done using the familiar ‘green screens’ with the backgrounds added in afterwards which doesn’t make things easy for the actors who mostly have to imagine what’s there, while acting in a void. NantStudios decided to leave the outdated green screen way of working behind and commissioned high pixel density LED screens allowing hyper realistic backgrounds to be projected onto them, making the actors feel right in the middle of the action.
WI input consisted of the motion engineering of the moveable LED ceilings and synchronization with the other studio technology using Posix.
In order to get the extremely sharp images required when filming, the cameras need to always be perfectly coordinated once the screens are put in their right places. Each ceiling pod can tilt up to 30 degrees, while also having a vertical range of motion of up to 12.5m allowing a production to aim the video exactly where they want it to be.
WI’s challenge definitely lied in the exact synchronization with precise controls for all the motors making the screens move. It’s the first time in our nearly 20-year existence that such a large volume of hoists and drives - no less than 145 drives and 150 hoists to be exact - had to be engineered, delivered and integrated simultaneously in 1 swipe.
145 drives and 150 hoists had to be engineered, delivered and integrated simultaneously in 1 swipe in a very short time span.
WI are proud as a Belgian company that our expertise has been valued high enough to be the chosen partner for such a ground breaking innovative project boosting the worldwide film and TV production sector.
- Control Techniques
- Rock-IT Global
- GIS Switzerland
- Project Lead: Hans Willems
- Project Manager: Jasper Rosiers
- Motion Tech: Sam Melotte, Björn Huys, Stijn Vanheukelom
- Operator: Kim Bennett-Abbiss
- WIMOTION Integration Lead: Lesly Van Rompaey