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09/07/2012

BBC Adds Vizrt Augmented Reality to Euro 2012 Programmes

BBC's Match of the Day EURO 2012 coverage ended on 1st of July with Spain making history as Euro winners as well as World Champions MotD made extensive use of the Vizrt Augmented Reality studio system it had been using during the previous domestic season. It played a key part during the memorable last match of the Premier League, which saw the two Manchester teams battle out their point differences in historic, parallel-running matches.
BBC Sport wanted to give MotD a fresh appeal and its move to Media City, Salford provided the opportunity. In the autumn of 2011, the programme went live with a new studio set that included 3D augmented reality graphics provided by Vizrt. Camera tracking was from Motion Analysis.
BBC Sport has used Viz Trio CGs software for its live, studio-based graphics since 2003. The graphics appear in Football Focus, Final Score and Match of the Day whilst also being used for events such as French Open tennis and the Super Bowl.
Vizrt UK’s own Creative Services designed 3D team-badge graphics for all the PL teams, which appear as augmented reality animations before each match in the programme.
Ian Finch, Director of Match of the Day explained: "The implementation of augmented reality allows us to bring a whole new approach to our studio presentation. We are now able to complement our existing hard set with virtual set pieces which can be animated in at the touch of a button.
"The system also allows us to enhance our on-screen graphics by delivering team formations on the studio floor as a 3D illustration, moving the camera along the defensive line or focusing on an individual by flying the camera across the virtual pitch. Add to that the use of team badges, maps and written text and we have a studio environment that can keep on evolving and moving forward."
Mark Pizzey, Vizrt Account Manager, added: "BBC Sport were seeking a new look for Match of the Day last season and they chose a new Viz Virtual Studio HD system Adding graphics augmentation to the programme was a great move in a year when more live sport will be shown on the BBC than at any other time.
"Viz Virtual graphics are flexible, and can switch easily from enhancing Premier League football, to the Euro 2012 Championships and on to other big Sporting events."
Creative Director for BBC Sport, Richard Gort commented: "We are always keen to embrace new technology as we look for opportunities to evolve the BBC Sport brand. The Augmented reality system we saw as having the potential for creative and effective Graphic delivery. The ability to utilise the studio space to add 3D elements that deliver content within a moving shot has opened up creative doors for both designers and directors alike, and the response from the public has thus far been overwhelmingly positive!"
The creative work has been a collaborative effort between Paul Kavanagh Studios, deltatre and BBC Sports own graphics department. Paul Kavanagh Studio's involvement covered concept development and design, through to delivery of real-time assets. Deltatre manage the day to day graphics operation for the studio production, delivering sophisticated graphic templates to visualise complex live data with compelling design. Deltatre use Vizrt to provide all on screen graphics for MotD studio programmes and have managed the results and graphic service for BBC Sport since 2006.
Match of the Day, presented by former England striker Gary Lineker, first aired in 1964 and is one of the BBC’s most iconic Sports programmes. Match of the Day was previously broadcast from the BBC’s Television Centre in London before it moved to Media City in Salford last year, along with BBC Breakfast and BBC Children.
Mark Pizzey concluded: "The new BBC building in Salford has a substantial Vizrt server-based 3D graphics system at its core, which provides access to many BBC users. Heavy graphics users like BBC Sport and BBC News make full use of the Viz system, but occasional users like BBC Children, Breakfast and others can easily tap into 3D map animations, title sequences and full-frame 3D graphics when they need them.
"We hope that the same resource-sharing concept will catch on at other BBC TV centres which have also standardised on a Viz system. Then we would hope to see BBC centres-of-excellence for real-time graphic design emerging – such as for virtual studios, maps and weather and all that great talent could be made available nationally to every BBC department – for TV, mobile and online platforms."
www.vizrt.com
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