Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) has opened a new xR stage for virtual production powered by disguise vx 4 and rx II media servers, as part of a landmark 10.9-acre expansion project of the university’s Savannah Film Studios, with a Hollywood-style film backlot. The expansion will make SCAD’s Savannah Film Studios the largest, most comprehensive university film studio complex in the country.
The newly-built xR stage is the largest and tallest studio at any SCAD location. A second xR stage is under construction at SCAD Atlanta and scheduled to open in Fall 2022. SCAD has collaborated with MEPTIK, an experiential design and virtual production company co-founded by SCAD alumna Sarah Linebaugh to design the xR stage in Savannah as well as Atlanta. Atlanta-based MEPTIK is a disguise Certified Solution Provider.
“With its ability to empower real-time control while shooting, xR technology is enabling visual storytelling capabilities we have not seen before,” says disguise Vice President of Sales for the Americas, Caroline Niedzwiecki. “At disguise we strive to provide the most innovative technology that empowers the wildest creative vision possible. SCAD is at the top of the pyramid when it comes to education in the media and entertainment industries. We are so proud that the disguise workflow will power the xR stage for the Savannah Film Studios and train the next generation of virtual production professionals for a bright future.”
SCAD was named No. 1 among the Top 50 Creative Media & Entertainment Schools and Colleges in the World 2021 by The Rookies, which sponsors the world’s largest contest for aspiring creatives in games, animation, visual effects, immersive media, motion graphics and 3D visualisation.
Dubbed a “true game-changer” for SCAD, the new xR stage will offer unparalleled storytelling opportunities to students across the schools of Entertainment Arts and Digital Media. The xR stage has an LED video wall display from DeNyse Digital measuring approximately 40 x 20 x 17 feet with a 1.5mm pixel pitch. The environments displayed on the screen are created using Unreal Engine, and the stage features stYpe RedSpy tracking RED’s Komodo 6K camera, outfitted with Zeiss lenses. The disguise xR workflow powers the delivery of real-time graphics from Unreal Engine with four vx 4 and two rx II media servers.
“Being a SCAD-founded, SCAD-driven company, we are honoured to have been chosen to collaborate with SCAD on this project,” says MEPTIK Co-Founder and Creative Director, Sarah Linebaugh. “We have been working with the extended reality workflow for years, and building the xR stage for the Savannah Film Studios meant that we could play a part in developing the next generation of xR specialists. We look forward to seeing what future SCAD alumni will be able to create using this technology.”
Photo: © Savannah Colege of Art and Design