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Vicon Forms Feature Unit For Entertainment ClientsTo focus on specialized development, consultation and production support (June 23, 2005)
Vicon, developer of Academy Award-winning motion capture technology, is pleased to announce formation of the Vicon Feature Unit (VFU), a new Vicon entity to be based in Los Angeles, Calif., and devoted to on-the-ground consulting, custom service, development and pipeline building for Vicon's film, video game and television clientele. As the capabilities of motion capture and Vicon systems become more and more vital to the creative aims and approaches of many Hollywood and game productions, VFU will be able to provide everything from purchasing and setup advice, pre-production, capture and post production services through to custom hardware and software to rapidly deliver on unique studio requirements and project demands.
"Vicon has always had the reputation of being at the cutting edge of motion capture. The Vicon Feature Unit is yet another industry first for Vicon: a focused business unit aimed at delivering radical new technology, service and customization for high-end VFX clients," said Gary Roberts, recently named Vice President of the Vicon Feature Unit. "Providing complete solutions, VFU will ensure that productions are run efficiently, with superior results that bring the ambitious ideas of our clients to reality. With the rise of performance capture, first unit on-set motion capture and camera counts in the hundreds, the creative and technical aspirations of the market are demanding this type of complete service. For Vicon, there was only one way to do it: with a dedicated and experienced team that can go deep into production, speak the language and get mission-critical tools commissioned and put immediately into use to deliver the start-to-finish solution for any production."
"We envision the Vicon Feature Unit as a growing business, especially as the need increases for VICON MX technology and facilities take on projects that require new technological feats and expertise," added Brian Nilles, CEO, Vicon Motion Systems. "Gary and his team will be bringing their wealth of studio experience directly to customers, and, in a related move, we will also be building a new Vicon development team, based in Los Angeles, focused on the entertainment and visual effects community. This will enable development efforts to be aimed squarely at our customer needs and requirements, and managed right in the heart of the industry."
VFU was created in recognition of the fact that Vicon's large entertainment accounts frequently have productions that must be planned for and executed in very unique ways. Such productions include notable projects from Sony Pictures Imageworks, whose credits include the Robert Zemeckis motion picture The Polar Express and last year's Best Visual Effects Oscar winner Spider-Man 2, and other film visual effects and game animation accounts.
VFU will consist of developers, specialists and technical directors who can be on set and on site for pre-production, capture and post production to ensure immediate solutions, feature implementation and other customization. The group will access Vicon's engineering teams as well as the motion capture services and facilities at Vicon company House of Moves, also in Los Angeles, to provide a complete and dedicated motion capture solution.
Roberts has always been at the forefront of motion capture and steps into his new role having been Executive Development Manager at Vicon's engineering headquarters in the UK. He entered the motion capture arena over 14 years ago while employed by Electronic Arts. Spotting an article in a medical journal, he quickly realized the potential of motion capture technology for computer animation applications, and his enthusiasm led to EA's first investment in motion capture systems.
After an extensive tenure using motion capture at EA, DreamWorks, Motion Analysis Corp. and other production companies, Roberts spent several years in Los Angeles designing and managing Performance Capture Studios, a high-end motion capture studio. His uniquely technical and creative career, which combines traditional animation with development, began at IBM's Scientific Research Center in conjunction with Oxford University and quickly progressed to working on key productions such as Lost In Space, Shrek, Resident Evil and The Polar Express.
Vicon motion capture systems have been used to create memorable and ground-breaking animation and visual effects on dozens of seminal movies -- from the Star Wars prequels to Titanic. In February 2005, Vicon received a Scientific and Technical Academy Award from The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.
Motion capture solutions from Vicon consist of high-resolution, high-frame-rate cameras built by Vicon specifically for motion tracking. Vicon's next-generation VICON MX real-time optical motion capture systems usher in ultra-high-resolution, virtually artifact-free capture with VICON MX40, the world's first four-million-pixel motion capture camera. VICON MX revolutionizes the quality, flexibility and ease with which motion capture data can be applied to real-time and off-line applications in film, television, video games, virtual prototyping, biomechanical analysis and more.
Vicon Motion Systems is a subsidiary of OMG plc (LSE: OMG) with global headquarters in Oxford, UK, and US headquarters in Lake Forest, CA. OMG subsidiary 2d3 Ltd. produces innovative visual geometry software deriving 3D data from moving images. Since 1984, Vicon has been providing professionals with the latest tools to accurately capture the subtleties of three-dimensional human motion for research, medicine, sport, engineering, game development, broadcast and film.
For more information about Vicon, or to view a comprehensive list of worldwide distributors, visit www.vicon.com or contact +44 (0) 1865-261800 in the UK or (949) 472-9140 in the US.
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