CATS: A Multimedia Tool for Scenographic Simulation in Theatre and TV
The pre-production phase of a theatre play or a TV program is a time-consuming task. The number of professionals involved in the design of the scenography and choreography of a play implies collaborative work. The work of each technician is essentially handcraft due to the lack of computer tools that offer integrated multimedia capabilities sufficient for presenting the scenographic and choreographic elements involved in a play.
In this chapter we describe a multimedia tool, CATS, for the design and presentation of a virtual mise en scène of a play or a TV show. We will focus the discussion on the real-time graphics module. This tool is the result of an Esprit project and its design and implementation has involved technicians in several European universities as well as people from theatre and TV.
The result is a tool to be used as a medium for discussing ideas among different artist and professionals (directors, actors, lighting technicians, choreographers, musicians etc.) and getting an accurate vision of the whole play or TV production in the pre-production phase. In addition, it can also be used as a virtual simulation for presentation purposes.
Our tool has been developed to run on low-cost platforms (PCs) using Microsoft Windows NTTM.
The main challenge of CATS has been the combination of different time-consuming processes in a low-cost platform. Asa result, our module is able to produce a 10–15 Hz frame rate ofa medium-complex 3D lighted scene (5000 polygons) of sufficient quality inside a multimedia environment (with 2D actors moving in the 3D scene with dialogue and sound effects).
KeywordsCoherence Stein Editing Metaphor Mellon
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