This is a huge LED video wall – 50 meters by 10 meters tall – being used for an ever-changeable broadcast set by a Chinese state broadcaster.
The curved wall was put up to help run a two-hour live TV event recently, called CCTV Consumer Rights Day Gala. I will leave it to other, more suitable forums to comment on China and galas about rights.
The broadcaster determined that given all the different topics to cover, and the cost and time needed to have and change multiple physical backdrops, virtual was going to be easier.
The visuals were generated using the mixed reality solution, Pixotope. “A two-hour-long broadcast, Pixotope was used to provide set extension and environment changes in real-time, creating cityscapes, interactive graphics, and streams of visuals surrounding the hosts.”
China Central Television’s covers the entire set floor with a half-circle with a diameter of 30 meters. To power the incredible, live broadcast graphics and achieve a large-scale set extension for the CCTV broadcast, CCTV used as many as four Pixotope engines at one time. Throughout the broadcast, the presenters were surrounded by the LED screens, which displayed logos, CG graphics, and animation.
In one shot, a continuous stream of data spirals around the stage, merging with on-screen AR graphics being manipulated by the presenter. In another, the presenter is surrounded by CG shadows of hidden people, before revealing a participant on the stage. This was the first time CCTV had implemented true XR for a live show, but its success is a positive first step towards even bigger projects in the future. XR offers CCTV and other production studios unprecedented flexibility for live programming.
LED and narrow bezel LCD as broadcast backdrops is not new, but they’re not normally done at this kind of scale. I’m not sure how many cinemas can afford switching to LED screens from projection, because of the way that business was clobbered by the pandemic, but broadcast and movie production appears to be a very large opportunity for direct view LED manufacturers.