One of the ARRI Solutions Group’s first mixed reality reference projects is the recently operational DARK BAY Virtual Production Studio in Babelsberg near Berlin. At one of Europe's largest permanent LED studio for virtual film productions, the ARRI Solutions Group was responsible for the overall technical planning as well as the coordination of the installation of all components. To achieve the highest production quality, client and partner, in close collaboration, combined state-of-the-art hardware with engineering performance to create an innovative overall system. For this landmark project, ARRI’s three business units—Camera Systems, Lighting, Rental—worked together intensively under the project management and coordination of the ARRI Solutions Group.
“In spring 2021, we built our high-end LED studio in a record time of three months on the premises Studio Babelsberg AG. The team from the ARRI Solutions Group, one of the few vertically integrated service providers with a spectrum of knowledge that spans LED, light, camera, and data technology, was commissioned with the overall planning,” explains Philipp Klausing, Managing Director of DARK BAY GmbH and producer of “1899.” “The balanced inclusion of the needs from the specialist departments of direction, camera, lighting, and VFX were indispensable for us to guarantee a satisfactory recording result in the studio. The high level of bundling competence that the ARRI Group offers in its entirety was a main factor in guaranteeing the studio be assembled and delivered in this quality.”
Currently, filming is taking place in the DARK BAY for the Netflix production “1899,” the new series from the makers of “Dark” Jantje Friese and Baran bo Odar. The actors are being filmed in front of 55 meter-long and seven meter-high, bent at 270°, LED wall with the ARRI ALEXA Mini LF camera and ARRI Rental lenses, created exclusively for “1899.” The LED wall is complemented by 70 SkyPanels from ARRI, combining to interactively illuminate the volume.
With the establishment of global technology partnerships and regional mixed reality testing environments, ARRI is driving the development of innovative products, workflows, and solutions forward. In Uxbridge, near London, ARRI and ARRI Rental will open a mixed reality studio in June 2021 that will be used for commercial and demonstration purposes. Additional test and demo stages are operated by ARRI in Burbank, near Los Angeles, as well as in Munich. More mixed reality studio projects are in the pipeline. As a shareholder of Volucap, the first volumetric studio on the European mainland in Babelsberg, ARRI has worked on the further development of recording techniques for virtual reality and augmented reality since the studio’s opening in 2018.
Camera and lighting systems, as well as accessories from ARRI, have already been used in a wide range of professional mixed reality film productions, including “The Mandalorian” (Walt Disney).