Projection mapped animation on screens held by giant robot arms


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Part of me says it would be a cheat, but the rest of me can’t wait to see something like this in the hands of a master illusionist…

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This is entirely wonderful.


FWIW, I would not be surprised to find that the projector and camera are on the same motion-mapped platform – just to simplify the task of computing the interactions between projection and viewing angle.

I watched this muted, listening to The king Kong vs. Godzilla - Original Motion Picture Soundtrack, by Akira Ifukube. Man, it felt like the most dramatic old-timey experimental cinema ever.
What an odd coincidence that it would line up so nicely. (started the video a few seconds into the Main Title, if you want to try. And you should.)

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I expect that the viewing camera is also robot-mounted, although it’s certainly possible to track the camera and render what you’re displaying based in its location, as in Johnny Chung Lee’s wiimote-based VR system

I think the images on the screens are added after. The guy on set is not seeing any image on the screens. That is why they are using the ambiguous term projection-mapping instead of saying it is projected. It is mapped to look like it is projected for the the precise location of the camera.

I am sure it is very impressive feat, but they are doing that thing a lot of Digital artists do. Which is to bluff that more is going on than is.

So you are saying that their claim at the beginning of “all content is captured in camera” is a straight up lie?

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Having seen their systems and what they’re capable of first-hand, I’m fairly certain what you see on the video is exactly as the camera saw it.


There don’t appear to be projectors mounted behind the screens. They would have to be tracking the screens with separate robot arms, the projectors rushing around the room to keep up. Or they have one or two enormous projectors that can project into the two screens with a mask. They would need to be really hi-rez to do that.

I don’t think they are lying. I think they are masters of manipulating the language as much as manipulating technology. Lots of money flowing around in that area, leading to ways of describing the work that maximize the wow factor.

I have seen that kind of thing up close, too.

OK, its a giant flat screen. Or two rather. I haven’t been around that kind of tech in a few years, so my BS detectors are obsolete, or need an upgrade. It is definitely dependent on the POV of the camera to look that good, though.

Retraction below, or above.

Disclaimer: no tech knowledge about robotics at all, ditto for projection (except to the extent that I helped set up dance parties, back in the day).

The camera clearly seems to be mounted on another robotic arm, which is visible for at least one brief moment when it’s shooting the floor of the space. Following from this, the idea that one or two projectors could be mounted on similar robotic arms seems logical enough. If the tracking of the camera robot is crisp enough to make all the illusory angle stuff work, I don’t see how controlling the projectors would be a challenge…?

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Yes, as I said above, I think they are flat screen monitors after looking again. Which would eliminate the need for projectors tracking them. The camera and screens are choreographed and the whole thing is composed. This I appreciate.

My days servicing digital artists saw a lot of hand waving and wishful thinking. I think I reacted too quickly based on that experience. Perhaps the tech has caught up with the vision.

Did you say “wishful thinking”? I have trouble hearing people, having become lost inside my personal virtual cybersex den, circa 1991. :wink:

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So you think that when what is displayed on the screens extends to the floor then *that’s * a projection, but what’s on the screens is just being generated by the monitors?
I’ll stick to the idea that what’s stated at the beginning of the video is true. Besides, projection mapping is not an ambiguous term, it’s quite well defined and involves, well… projections.
Around 1:18 you can see how the actor’s hand casts a shadow on the screen. Definitely projection.

It could be that “projection” refers only to the geometric transforms that generate the images, not the tools for getting light to the right place.

So you’re positing the existence of eight-foot-tall flat screens with no bezel that are one inch thick, have an internal power supply, and can be swung around like poi? And the floor is a flat screen too?

They’re projection screens. You can see diffuse leaked light against the back wall, as well as the shadows of the screens.

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No, I think there are projectors for the floor. They would not have to move around.

although I am truly interested in the tech in how it’s made…let’s JUST enjoy the magic that it is.