+ Avatar producer Jon Landau has revealed during the NAB Technology Summit on Cinema that the upcoming sequels to James Cameron’s 2009 sci-fi blockbuster will utilize new technologies to motion capture performances under water. Rather than simulate the water in CG, Landau notes that in-tank capture will allow artists to get performance information on the actors’ facial expressions and experiences in the water. Motion-capture with digital character replacement was a key element of the first Avatar film. Landau also revealed the sequel team is considering utilizing high frame rate (as seen in Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit), which doubles the standard 24 frames per second to 48fps—despite some critics and theater-goers complaints about the effect of HFR on the viewing experience.
+ LightWave 3D Group, a division of NewTek, is demonstrating the latest improvements to its LightWave 11.5 3D modeling and animation software—including the new After Effects Interchange and workflow enhancements for broadcast and motion graphics—at NAB, booth SL4610. The AE Interchange allows artists to easily select elements in a scene (animation, lights, cameras) and move them between LW and AE via the GoAE button. The Interchange supports combining 2D footage and 3D elements by tracking cameras of live-action footage in AE to cameras in LW to achieve identical camera movements inside LW. In 11.5, artists can send nulls from AE to LW and place them in 3D space for compositing. And lights (including spotlights and point lights) can be moved between the programs for multiple test scenes. LightWave 11.5 is available for Mac and Windows for $1,495—Registered LW 11 users can upgrade for free; upgrade from LW 10 or earlier is $695. Visit lightwave3d.com for more info and to view the Interchange video tutorial.
+ PipelineFX is previewing new and upcoming additions to its render farm management software Qube! 6.5 at the show this year. Key features include a new installer that works seamlessly with all platforms and industry software packages; zero downtime reconfiguration without restart requirement to change configurations; and new AppFinder which allows usuers to run frames from the same project on OSX and Windows simultaneously. PipelineFX CEO Richard Lewis will be presenting on the software at the Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) booth #SL5816 at 2:30 p.m.
+ EditShare has announced the launch of the Mac OS version of its popular cross-platform editing software Lightworks, which is being demonstrated for the first time at NAB this year. The software has been redesigned to work seamlessly in Mac OS X, making it the first truly tri-platform (Windows, Linux, Mac) NLE to hit the market. Additional announcements regarding Lightworks are the kick off of Public Beta testing for Lightworks 11.1 Linux, going live on April 30—the same day the full version of Lightworks 11.1 Windows goes live following the close of its Beta. Show visitors can see a demo of the OS X version at the EditShare booth SL9010, followed by a Q&A with editor and Lightworks user Scott Hill (Zookeeper, Bruce Almighty).