BBC's Match of the Day EURO 2012 coverage ended last Sunday with Spain making history as Euro winners as well as World Champions. MotD made extensive use of Viz Virtual Studio for augmented reality 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:
Creative Director for BBC Sport, Richard Gort added:
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 added:
Vizrt Ltd. announced today that the Company has signed a deal worth in excess of $400,000 for the implementation of a new tracking system with TV 2 Norway.
The deal includes the purchase of a new tracking system by MotionAnalysis. The system provides infrared tracking information for Viz Virtual Studio. Infrared tracking allows flexibility in camera movement in the studio. Camera operators can use shoulder-mounted cameras, Steadicams or jibs without the need for bulky mechanical tracking systems.
In addition to the tracking system, TV 2 Norway purchased several Viz Engines. The Viz Engine handles the tracking and keying of the virtual environment, giving a real-time 3D SDI output. A typical configuration is one Viz Engine for every physical camera that will be tracked.
TV 2 Norway has been a long-standing user of Viz Virtual Studio in sports and many other original programs. Viz Virtual Studio allows for the easy creation of complex 2D and 3D virtual sets with an intuitive interface.