Last year, the first season of “The Mandalorian” was not just a great show, it was the result of an entirely new paradigm in film and TV production. The stagecraft, giant LED-volume ILM, was used to shoot the season it has since expanded and is better, faster and easier to use.
In a back-the-scene video, the director and others from the production weigh in on how the system makes everything easier, and calculate improvements for the 2.0 version.
The most recognizable piece of stagecraft is the “Volume”, a spacious space inside two stories and a ceiling of high-resolution LED-based displays. With physical sets placed in the center, the feeling of being in a large location is real – and if you shoot it correctly, you can’t tell a virtual backdrop from a real one.
Fundamentally it is huge, allowing it to be aligned with complex sets (and regardless of weather or itinerary) to shoot “on location”, but far more beautiful than a soundstage or portable green screen Actors who have stood in front of them for decades. Not only this but it pulls together many disparate parts of the production process into a shared process.
Robert Rodriguez, who directed several episodes of the show (as well as several films) in the ILM video, said, “What is amazing about this system is that everyone is now on the same page.” “It inspires the actors, it inspires the filmmakers to see what they are shooting now. You know, it’s like you’re finally painting with lights. “
But while it would be difficult to say anything to a stagecraft, but a runaway success, it is still a lot of work. As an end-to-end system it would have to be integrated with dozens of renderers, color suites, cameras, pre-production and post-production software, and of course also LED walls, which are always improving.
“By the second season, ILM developed some software that was specific to the technology and what the hardware was capable of,” said John Favareu, the show’s executive producer and ineffective patron of the new technology at the cinema.
There were several specific requests from various members of the team, as well as common bug squash and performance improvements, leading to an improved workflow. Also, the volume itself has become bigger and better.
“It has also forced us into a more efficient workflow that pulls pre-production, post-production, production, all into one continuous pipeline,” Favreau said. Not only is it more natural and better than common place or green screen techniques, it’s faster – they’re working through 30% -50% more script pages per day, which any creator will tell you is incredible. is.
I plan to dig deeper into the technological improvements and pipelines that ILM, Disney, Unreal and other companies have made together to make this all possible. Meanwhile you can watch the behind the scenes video below: