New film studio in Burnaby will include huge LED stage for virtual production
LED stages serve as an alternative to a traditional green screen, with walls of LED panels displaying backdrops and visual effects directly on set.
South Burnaby will soon be home to a film studio with what developers say will be one of the largest LED production stages in North America.
Virtual production company Versatile Media said in a press release earlier this week that the 43,000 sq ft studio will also include multiple soundstages, both traditional and LED, “as well as coinciding amenities including paint and sawmill, dedicated costume areas, general offices space, and parking to accommodate a full production.”
Versatile is headquartered on Pandora St in Vancouver, where it currently provides services like virtual location scouting and ‘techviz’, which helps clients with sequencing and camera blocking for principle photography. The company says the new Burnaby location will allow them to offer end-to-end virtual production to the global industry.
“When founder and CEO of Versatile Media, Leo Lee, completed his first feature film as a director, he began developing solutions for filmmakers to release the creative process from any technical limitations. The company began to invest heavily in technology that would augment the filmmaking process,” Versatile said in a press release.
“At first these tools were created for internal use and to make the film process more efficient, but after experiencing the creative freedom and success these advancements provided, the company’s endeavors turned outwards.”
LED stages serve as an alternative to a traditional green screen, with walls of LED panels displaying backdrops and visual effects directly on set—rather than having to be added into a scene in post-production.
Versatile said its LED will be made of 12,000 of those panels to create a cylindrical volume nearly 90ft wide, with a 30ft flat ceiling in the middle too.
The company said its research and development team also found a solution that “fully resolves” the moiré effect (a phenomenon creating an interference pattern. The moiré effect often shows itself when you take photos of a screen, for instance, and a grey checkered pattern appears in the photo). That means that the LED panels can be filmed from any angle and from up to six feet away from the screen.
“Other core cinematography features include, zero latency camera tracking, filming up to 8k resolution at 120 fps, integrated virtual and physical DMX lighting console for creative lighting and colour management as well as integrated camera focus pull allowing DPs to adjust focal length as part of the brain-bar system,” Versatile said.
The new studio space near Marine Drive, which is being built by Beedie, is expected to be completed late this year and Versatile plans to begin operations in early 2023.