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Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Broadcasters Air FIFA World Cup with Virtual Studio Graphics Powered by Reality

From Morocco’s historic win against Portugal (becoming the first African team ever to make it to the semi-finals) to Richarlison’s bicycle kick and Messi’s fairytale ending; this World Cup has certainly had its fair share of incredible moments.

As fans were watching, broadcasters around the globe were bringing smashing graphics to the screen with the help of the Zero Density products. Using real-time graphics hardware and software, Belgium’s RTBF, France’s TF1, Qatar’s Alkass, Maldives’ ICE TV, Malaysia’s Astro, Slovenia’s RTV SLO, and UAE’s Asharq News built virtual studios for all their live coverage. Read on to discover how each broadcaster decided to enhance their creativity with Reality Engine.

RTBF Gives Masterclass on Virtual Studio Production

RTBF’s World Cup coverage show was massive: It was broadcasted live to football fans every day from 3pm to 10.30pm. To create a virtual studio worthy of such an extensive show, the RTBF team decided to set up a portal window LED screen behind the presenter. This screen was then flanked by two green screens, while standard LED screens were used behind the studio guests. The design and Reality integration were carried out by DreamWall.

The virtual studio was run by three engines, on two RE AMPERE workstations. 2 Engines are used for the virtual set and one Engine for the flycam feature. Thanks to the Reality ecosystem, the team was able to place the hosts on a photorealistic rooftop in Qatar, with different lighting used to represent daytime, evening, and night. The virtual camera shots enabled RTBF to move from a studio to stadium, providing a view of all eight football stadiums in Doha. To do this, the team recreated the entire city and all eight stadiums in 3D. They also used augmented reality elements to display scores, player and team statistics, and even dynamic team lineups on the virtual studio’s LED wall powered by Reality.

The RTBF team teleported several soccer players from Qatar into the studio for live interviews and enlivened a usual connecting to the stadium for post-game action.

TF1 Goes 360° for World Cup Commentary

France’s most popular network and the most viewed TV channel in Europe, TF1, is no stranger to immersive sports broadcasting. They are one of the first channels to adopt a hybrid production capability dating back to 2018 World Cup.

For 2023, TF1 utilised Reality once again for their daily World Cup coverage on Le Mag with Denis Brogniart. Kennedy Agency designed the smashing graphics and DreamWall took care of Reality integration and setup.

RTV SLO Unlocks the Power of Augmented Reality Graphics

RTV SLO started preparations for the World Cup during the summer, when the team decided to dedicate their entire studio space to virtual production. Despite never having used the Reality ecosystem before, they were able to get the studio ready for broadcast in just three weeks.

First, three designers began working on different parts of the set, before combining them to make one big scene. RTV SLO’s regular U-shaped 80m2 cyclorama was then extended with an additional flat cyclorama, which provided more space for the presenter to move and host the FIFA World Cup commentary. The shape and color space conversions were handled correctly by Reality Keyer, the first and only real-time image-based keyer with advanced clean plate technology which makes the system much more advanced than a chroma keyer.

RTV SLO went live everyday with three cameras – each of which was linked to one Reality Engine and in total one RealityHub to power all the real-time Unreal Engine graphics involved.


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