Cyber week

Unity 冬キャンペーンを開催中!
Unity 冬キャンペーンを開催中!


制作者: Digital Monarch Media
The studio
Two worlds colliding

映画およびゲーム業界の 2 人のベテラン、Wes Potter と Habib Zargarpour がタッグを組んでバーチャル・シネマトグラフィーの会社を興したとき、彼らは製作の現場で感じていた物足りなさを満たそうとしました。というのも、監督や撮影監督は CG の制作から締め出されつつあったからです。

彼らはバンクーバーを拠点とする Digital Monarch Media(DMM)を作り、そこで Virtual Film Tools の力によって従来の映画製作の哲学とリアルタイムエンジンの技術を統合しました。彼らの目標は、「製作のプロセスを現場に戻すこと。カメラで撮影するかのように、すべてを実際の ... つまり、監督を映画製作の最前線、中心に戻すことです」と Potter は説明します。

彼らはリアルタイムエンジンで得た経験を生かし、従来の遅い VFX パイプラインに即時性をもたらしました。リアルタイムエンジンのレンダリングはきわめて高速で、監督は自分たちが行った変更の影響を現場で確認しながら、創造性を発揮してすばやくイテレーションを行うことができます。Potter が指摘するように、「人々はそのようなアーティストとしての仕事を見るために映画を見に行きます。各ショットでの監督の息づかいを感じたいのです」このツールはそれを可能にします。

Wes Potter, Founder and CEO, and Habib Zargarpour, COO

The project
The future today

With Unity, DMM created tools they call “Expozure,” “Cyclopz” and “Hermes.” Accessed on a customized handheld tablet or VR headset, they give the director ultimate control in CG production, letting them direct camera, lighting and set changes in real time on stage, rather than waiting for the final renders of the shots.

DMM’s Virtual Film Tools are used on some of Hollywood’s biggest features

DMM’s Virtual Film Tools are used on some of Hollywood’s biggest features

DMM’s Virtual Film Tools have been employed on some of Hollywood’s most successful recent films. The tools were used to make high-end, real-time filming possible on Disney’s Oscar-winner The Jungle Book, and most recently, Spielberg’s Ready Player One and on Oscar-winner Blade Runner 2049.

Because teams often have only a few minutes to design a new camera/object rig on the motion-capture floor to cater to the director’s wishes, they appreciate Unity’s flexible and rapid environment, aided by having an engineer on the stage floor. “It really collapses the iteration time,” says Potter.

Virtual cinematography hardware with Expozure as used on Blade Runner 2049

Virtual cinematography hardware with Expozure as used on Blade Runner 2049

For example, on Ready Player One, Potter had to rebuild a pipeline to accommodate a requirement of Steven Spielberg. He was able to quickly redo the entire thing live, on set, and have it ready to suit Spielberg’s timetable. Potter credits Unity for being able to do this quickly, because “it is such an adaptable engine.”

Customized hardware created for use on film sets

Customized hardware created for use on film sets

The reveal
Magic for teams

Leveraging Unity’s open and flexible architecture, DMM’s virtual cinematography environment lets directors and DPs experiment on the fly, as Potter explains: “On Blade Runner 2049, Villeneuve was able to re-envision shots for some of the digital scenes well after much of the editing was complete, creating a desired mood and tempo for the film.”

Unity で作った Expozure を使って監督はライティングとレンズとステージングを変えました

With the DMM tools, directors like Spielberg and Favreau can direct their actors on the mocap stage because they can see them in their virtual forms composited live into the CG shot. They can even judge the final scene with lighting and set objects in detail. “It’s a holistic place for decision-making,” says Zargarpour.

What the director is seeing, either through the tablet or inside a VR headset, can be closer to final render, due to Unity’s graphical quality – which is light-years from where directors used to be – before real-time technology became part of the shoot.

The range of production touched by DMM’s Unity tool

The range of production touched by DMM’s Unity tool

Camera data is sent from the mocap stage to Unity, into DMM’s listening node called “Hermes” and onto Expozure.

All the departments at your fingertips

All these objects are synchronized across all DMM’s tablets or portals (i.e., Vive), so everyone can participate in the experience.

This is magic for teams working on a previs. If one person moves an object, everyone sees the change. The director can animate the camera, move objects and lighting, do almost anything while having every department at their fingertips.

And because final camera animation generated in Expozure often survives postproduction all the way through to the final edit, filmmakers are starting to see the impacts of real time on the future of their craft.

“It’s completely inevitable that you’ll be able to get finished, quality VFX shots in real time,” says Zargarpour.

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