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BBC S&PP transforms studio for elections

BBC Studios and Post Production is supporting BBC News’ local and European elections broadcasts

BBC Studios and Post Production is supporting BBC News’ local and European elections broadcasts by delivering a series of live programmes from Elstree. The 23 hours’ worth of live programming will air across BBC channels from 22 to 26 May.

The news elements of the elections programmes will be broadcast from New Broadcasting House, while using BBC S+PP’s Studio D to scale up the broadcast capacity.

The Elstree Studio D facilities include a new virtual reality environment with a green screen set for presenter Jeremy Vine, which utilises new virtual reality technology. Attached to the studio cameras, MoSys Star Tracker uses an upward looking camera that tracks random markers on the studio’s grid and sends positional information to a computer to render the correct viewpoint. This allows Vine to move around the green screen environment without affecting the position of the virtual graphs and charts.

“We are delighted to be working with BBC News on this project. Providing studios, technical facilities and staff expertise for such a large scale and complex live event as the elections is the perfect showcase for BBC Studios and Post Production’s capabilities,” said Anna Mallett, CEO of BBC S+PP. “We’ve always been quick to embrace new technology, such as HD and then 3D, so to be using a new piece of virtual reality technology that will enhance viewing experiences is something that we’re all really excited about.”

The studio floor at Elstree will comprise a multi-camera set-up of 12 cameras, five of which are virtual reality capable. Facing a wall of LED screens enables presenter Dimbleby to interview politicians in their regions via a live video feed. Presenter Emily Maitlis will stand in front of a 103-inch interactive touch screen to provide the latest developments from each area of the country.