Virtual production specialist and author Noah Kadner joined SDMP for our May 26, 2021 meeting to demonstrate how virtual production is becoming a reality for many budgets.
Noah started with a quick history of virtual production from early films to today, including a look at how The Mandalorian is produced. What is quite interesting with this technology is that the director and tech crew determine design and details for the movie or TV episodes primarily in pre-production. Even much of post production happens in pre-production. So when the talent arrives and cameras roll, the scenes are recorded with the effects that would have been done in post or VFX in the past. Think of it as live production or pre-production on steroids.
Next, Noah switched to a live demonstration with an LED wall, approximately 10’ x 10’, RGB lights, two cameras, and a system controller, built right in his living room. What he could do with his simple demo set-up at home was impressive. A lot of great questions came up about the lighting and their controlled integration. For example, Noah positioned himself virtually in a London street scene at night. As a car drove by in the virtual background on the LED wall, the RGB lights changed, replicating how the tail lights would light the talent as they passed.
Of course, pricing was a hot topic with the SDMP members. Noah talked about what he paid for his setup, estimates for similar setups, and how producers can deploy virtual production for many types of shoots. Like mobile technology, virtual production technology is evolving quickly, especially with the push of the pandemic. With ongoing upgrades, pricing keeps dropping for state-of-the-art equipment.
Noah also talked about the future of virtual and augmented reality productions. No longer limited to just high budget productions, virtual production is more of a reality today than it has ever been. Just look around at the many studios popping up everywhere with an LED wall and system controller.
If you missed the meeting, you can watch the recording on our YouTube channel.
Unreal Engine - 3D Creation tool (It is free!)
Virtual Production Field Guide - Volume 1
Virtual Production Field Guide - Volume 2
Virtual Production with Noah Kadner podcast
About Our Speaker
ABOUT OUR SPEAKER
As an author, Noah wrote two Virtual Production Field Guides, Volume 1 and Volume 2. As the senior virtual production editor for American Cinematographer magazine, he has interviewed filmmakers like J.J Abrams, Jon Favreau, and Michael Bay. Noah also hosts the Virtual Production with Noah Kadner podcast, all while serving clients like Apple and the United Nations with workflow and integrations services as a co-founder of the Virtual Company.
Noah Kadner brings a unique combination of on-set production experience and in-depth post- production research and analysis. His career spans several filmmaking revolutions, including film to digital, desktop post-production, and virtual production/in-camera visual effects.
Noah wrote the Virtual Production Field Guide Volume 1 and 2 for Epic Games that helps producers, filmmakers, and executives understand the technology. You can find his virtual production guides here: Volume 1 and Volume 2.
Noah also hosts the Virtual Production podcast, where he talks with the filmmakers behind The Mandalorian, The Avengers, The Lion King, The Jungle Book, and more. The anecdotes and insights presented in the podcast are revealing about how the industry is pivoting. You can listen to the podcast here:
Virtual Production with Noah Kadner.
Besides the podcast, Noah is also the Virtual Production Editor for American Cinematographer magazine. He has interviewed many groundbreaking filmmakers, including J.J. Abrams, Jon Favreau, Sir Kenneth Branagh, and Michael Bay. As a senior writer, Noah has covered a wide range of movies including Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, Tron: Legacy, Toy Story 4, First Man, and Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.
With extensive production and post-production experience in film, broadcast, streaming, and virtual productions, Noah also offers workflow and integration services as a co-founder of The Virtual Company. His clients include Apple, the United Nations, Sony, Panasonic, Epic Games, and many thought leaders. He is based in San Francisco.
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