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Amazon Prime finds The Power with Universal Pixels

Universal Pixels provided in-camera scenery and reflections for the production’s vehicle shots

Amazon Prime series The Power relied on technical equipment and crew from UK company Universal Pixels during production.

The drama is based on the 2016 science fiction novel by British author Naomi Alderman in which young women across the globe develop mysterious new powers.

Universal Pixels provided in-camera scenery and reflections for the production’s vehicle shots.

Driving Plates supplied 360-degree plates, while Universal Pixels deployed Roe DM 2.6mm LED screens and an INFiLED ER5 LED ceiling screen powered by Brompton processing, with playback via disguise gx 2cmedia servers.

Universal Pixels’ lead tech Gareth Manicom coordinated with the production team to ensure that the screens and playback systems were integrated seamlessly into the filming process. “The scope of work included installing ground-stacked screens on three sides of the stage and a ceiling screen that was rigged on beam rollers so it could slide in and out over the cars,” he explained. “The screens were used for in-camera VFX, reflections, and lighting. Additionally, they were turned into green screens with tracking markers when not in use.

“Roe’s DM 2.6mm product was chosen for the side walls, and were used for the in-camera shots because of their higher pixel pitch. Another wall and the ceiling consisted of INFiLED ER5, and was used primarily for lighting purposes,” added Manicom. “We opted for Brompton’s SX40 processors as they have good colour control and useful features that allow for camera synchronisation, and for the user to iron out any artifacts that might occur between the screen and camera sensor.”

The team managed playback via disguise gx 2c media servers; Adderlink XDIP KVM enabled the operator’s cart to be on-stage while server and processing racks were away from the action to help keep the noise on set to a minimum.

The plates were shot with multiple cameras and angles from a car driving through various cities, and Manicom was tasked with arranging the clips onto the different screens depending on the position of the camera, adjusting perspective, colour and intensity as required.

“It was very interesting to work in this environment, and to see how the different creatives used the technology at hand. In working with UP, the equipment used is always in immaculate condition and neatly packaged,” he said. “UP’s in-house team is very organised too, so they’re a pleasure to work with. The Power is a great example of what we can achieve together.”