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R&D From Theoriz: Projecting Responsive Environments

William Gadea 06.15.2017

Back in the old days, when a movie studio wanted to shoot an outdoor scene in the studio, they would often choose rear projection. That is, they would shoot an outdoor scene and project it on translucent material in a studio, then place the actors and lighting in front of it. The unforgettable last scene from Some Like it Hot is a good example. A wind machine and moving the actors’ perch completes the effect.

Today, of course, we don’t generally make movies this way. (Although I think the artifice of rear projection is beautiful!) What we would do is shoot the actors against a green or blue screen, key out the background, and combine this layer with the background in a compositing program. (We created this video for NYCFC using such a workflow.)

The clever people at Theoriz know that sometimes old methods have their uses. Theoriz creates installations that project responsive animated backgrounds around people. Here is a clip of some of their R&D efforts. There is no post-production on this… it’s all created in-camera. I think you’ll agree that a process like this has a lot of possibilities!

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