Films have evolved dramatically because of technology. In the 1950s, movies typically exhibit common genres like comedy, romance, action, and romcom or romantic comedy. As the years passed, movie genres have evolved as well. It transitioned into various types, including science-fiction, horror films, fantasy, and more.
When films adopted new filming technology in the 70s, they used green screens and chroma keying to replace green walls with scenic backgrounds. This process emphasizes well the need for a large staff for post-production.
Today, the green screen has found its substitute, which is more digitalized, easy to use, and makes better filming result— the virtual production LED screens. The virtual LED displays serve their purpose for filming, making shoots and clips more organized and result-oriented. And for some particular sci-fi movies, virtual LED video walls are specifically designed and customized.
This article will discuss a virtual LED video wall designed for a specific movie or film, “The Mandalorian.” It is referred to as the Mandalorian LED video wall.
2. What Is A Mandalorian LED Video Wall?
The Mandalorian LED Video Wall is a collaborative result of Jon Favreau’s Golem Creations’ partnership with Industrial Light and Magic (ILM) in bringing the movie “The Mandalorian” into the virtual production set.
It has 1,326 LED screens interconnected to make a large video wall for filming. It utilizes 2.84 mm pixels and stands 20 feet with a width of 75 feet and 270 degrees.
This breakthrough leads to a new refinement and paradigm in the film industry as it is an important virtual reality filmmaking stage. This platform can be huge and so might also be high in cost. Nonetheless, the viewers can indeed affirm how rich the movie is when it comes to visuals. And so we say, it is of great value and is giving so much talk in audiovisual production today.
The Mandalorian is an American space western television series. Jon Favreau created it for Disney+. He is an American actor, comedian, and filmmaker who has also appeared in some sci-fi movies, such as Daredevil (2003). He also directed and produced Iron Man (2008), Iron Man 2 (2010), The Avengers (2012), and a lot more.
The Mandalorian is the first live-action series in the Star Wars franchise. Its main characters are; Pedro Pascal, Gina Carano, Carl Weathers, etc. Its first season was released on November 12, 2019, to December 27, 2019, while the second was from October 30, 2020, to December 18, 2020. Both seasons have eight episodes, and meanwhile, the third season will be released on February 2023 with a specific date to be announced.
3. The LED Wall Mandalorian Compared To Green Screen
The LED Wall Mandalorian is a massive breakthrough in filming. It made its way into “Stagecraft,” which uses the virtual screen for the background and has essential floor elements. It also opens another potential for using more additives in the scenes, such as props, digital devices, etc.
Compared to green screens, the Mandalorian LED screens excel in many ways but also hampers since they also have limitations. Here are how Mandalorian LED screens vary from green walls.
No More Chroma Keying
The green screens are cheaper than virtual LED walls, such as Mandalorian LED video walls. Green screen studios are composed only of green surfaces or walls laying as the stunt background during a shoot. Later, while editing clips, editors will replace the green screen with a computer-generated image to make the scene look cinematic. This process is called chroma-keying. We have explained this term thoroughly in the article about virtual production LED walls.
Meanwhile, there’s no need for fundamental chroma-keying in the Mandalorian LED screens since the background is already present in the real-time shooting.
Unlike green screen studios, dealing with lighting is much easier with a virtual LED screen. In a green screen studio, you’ll need lighting devices in almost all corners of the walls to delightfully give brightness to clips and help editors easily modify images and backgrounds.
The Mandalorian LED video wall is equipped with high brightness, so it’s easier to illuminate the entire scene naturally.
Immediate VFX Changes
The Mandalorian provides infinite options. It gives you the real-time opportunity to change scenes, angles, and movements of 3D objects in the background.
Lighter Post-Production Effort
Green screen indeed is cost-saving in terms of structure and equipment. However, in post-production, chroma keying is expensive and slow. It burdens film editors so much that editors must edit every scene manually.
With the Mandalorian LED screen, there’s no need for background editing. Changes with angles can be done in real-time, so the last thing for editors is to polish and recheck that every scene is perfect in visuals.
Persistent Cost Reduction
The LED wall Mandalorian immerses the actors in a realistic scene. Therefore, there’s no need for traveling, such as changing locations to achieve breathtaking views for stunts and clips. It reduces the cost of trips, mobility of devices, budget for the whole crew, and much more.
Better Camera Movement
In the virtual production LED screen, the actual camera collaborates or is connected to Unreal Engine’s virtual camera. When this happens, scenic and camera changes become more possible, leading to more accurate clips and visually appealing views.
4. How Much Does A Mandalorian LED Wall Cost?
The Mandalorian LED virtual screen is expensive, knowing its features and impressive impact on films. This can reach up to 100 million USD with its entire set. However, on a side note, please remember that the cost includes the end-to-end virtual production technology designed by ILM alongside virtual cameras and virtual scouting.
Because of its high price is considered a massive investment for producers, putting a little pressure on the result. Although besides using them for your films, you may rent them out to other film producers at times when they are available. It can make profit extension possible while resting after a particular filming period.
This production equipment might also decrease costs if it becomes a standard in the market. It will be a long run, but seeing the Covid-19 situation worldwide has also led to its widespread utilization.
5. Mandalorian LED Video Wall For TV Studios And Filming
The Mandalorian LED video wall made its way to impactful utilization for the series and the rest of the virtual production films. It has fully introduced this new technology which many film producers then follow since it offers valuable advantages.
This is the best key for you if you’re a film producer seeking ways to ease virtual production. Furthermore, if you’re considering engaging with virtual production sets, here are some approaches and lessons you need to keep in mind.
Before the shooting, you have to render out Lat-Long 360. In production designing, you’ll need to adjust precise lighting on the same day to match the environment and for real takes benefits. When the crew did it right, it lessens the need to reshoot clips.
3D Color Correction
The crew or operators should correct colors and shades before actual shoots. For example, it doesn’t need to be in an exact sphere and can be controlled by an iPad. Some color features you need to check to include saturation, selecting objects or moving the color correction volume back, etc.
Props And Set Dressing
Stagecraft comes in this segment. In the Stagecraft, you’ll use essential floor elements and the LED screen as background. Virtual production stages also have lots of props. Sometimes, the crew will need 2D elements to make way for “bounce-light” objects.
Exterior Lighting And Shadows
filming in an enclosed studio is less hassle. However, chances are you’ll need some natural ambiance for clips, so outdoor filming is necessary. In such instances, the operator needs to position the devices and screens should interactively. They should visualize sound lighting effects, brightness, proper illumination, and realistic takes on the HDRs.
Stage audios are typically loud on set. And because film recording devices are sensitive to noises, keeping the crew silent while taking clips or having chatter-off cameras is essential.
Real And Virtual Sets
Having a virtual LED screen doesn’t mean you will rely on it for the rest of the filming needs. It is still essential to consider filming on a natural background to give a collaboration of computer-generated backgrounds and real scenes.
6. How Will The Mandalorian LED Screens Help Covid-19 Recovery Among Film Producers?
The pandemic hit the film firm hard. Many ongoing series and movies paused due to travel restrictions in many parts of the world. And while it’s shivering other fields, movie production has also come up with better ideas to keep the film market alive.
During the siege of Covid-19, families, and individuals had to stay at home for safety reasons. This is why many film producers keep filming despite the warnings. They came up with virtual production LED screen and used it to recover the industry.
The Mandalorian LED screen is undoubtedly expensive. However, it also paved the way to make filming back to its spirit while the people continue to adjust to the situation. There’s no need for actors to travel for location shoots as they can film in an enclosed studio. Other changes include reducing crew members, daily swabbing, avoiding close contact on nodes, and much more.
Meanwhile, we hope the film industry continues to reach greater heights through more advanced technology.
Locations and venues for shooting are no anymore a big deal due to technology. Films and movies have also evolved into different images. In the later years, surely we’ll see more development in filming such as robots as actors, the same-day release of films and much more. Who knows? Technology makes little things unlimited.
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