Film School: Goodbye Green Screen, Hello ‘The Volume’

'The Mandalorian' on The Volume virtual LED set 'The Mandalorian' on The Volume virtual LED set

A look at the virtual set used in The Mandalorian.

Lead compositor Charmaine Chan chats to Vox about the technology Disney/Lucasfilm’s Industrial Light & Magic calls The Volume – how it works, how it feels, and what it means for the future of film and television production:

One interesting effect of wrap-around LED panels: they double as a light source for the action, creating reflections on actors and surfaces which add to the immersion – and reduce the amount of painstaking keying and relighting in post-production:

The Volume (via Vox)
The Volume (via Vox)

The real-time VFX is powered by Unreal Engine, as they themselves explain:

In their own behind-the-scenes video on The Mandalorian, Insider contrasts the process and feeling of virtual set versus green screen:

Try It At Home

We may not all have access to a giant, immersive cylinder of LED screens – but you may own a projector or LCD TV. Film Riot has some rear projection ideas you can try:

Austen Paul uses his TV to create vibrant backdrops for his commercial videos – here’s a roundup of his tutorials:

More on rear projection, its history, and how professional shoots do it, over here: