Students recently returning to Loyola Marymount University’s School of Film and Television have discovered a new networked digital environment for real-time film production, as well as a major expansion of the school’s animation program. The upgrades are the result of a $1.5-million investment in SFTV’s infrastructure. Architecture firm Gensler designed the new facilities.

With the new system, from the first camera shot, through editing, sound mixing, title sequence and vfx, all the way to projection, films live entirely on a secure, high-speed server. Additionally, LMU animation students now work in a new studio more than double the size of the previous studio. It features virtual cinematography on a motion-capture/stop-motion stage. The stage was built under the guidance of LMU visiting professor Justin Denton, who is with Halon, inventors of the OptiTrack virtual camera system.

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THX showed enhancements to its THX cineSpace color management software, a standard in film and TV post-production for image color accuracy and consistency. They include support for 64-bit operating systems on Windows, Mac and Linux platforms, in addition to 64-bit support in cinePlugin versions for Adobe Photoshop, Apple Shake, Eyeon Fusion, Nucoda Film Master and Nuke. THX will also introduce a THX room certification for direct-view dooms and digital intermediate theaters, assuring content producers that specific facilities are capable of providing consistent quality for accurate performance.

THX cineSpace products calibrate monitors and projection systems enable visual artists to see how an image will appear in several environments, including film projection, digital cinemas, plasma monitors and LCD consumer displays. They include software programs optimized for use in animation and vfx workstations as well as products for use in DI and mastering facilities. Users include animation and vfx houses and technology providers Tippett Studios, Nice Shoes and MTI Films.

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Arri Rental Germany acquired Panther Rental Prague. The latter company transferred its entire Czech equipment rental business – including personnel, equipment and customer relations – to Arri Rental. According to Arri, the step is a strategic opportunity to further expand its market position in the Czech Republic and the countries of Eastern Europe, bringing expanded capacity and the expertise of the former Panther employees, and a broader range of services, to production customers in the region.