disguise, the technology platform enabling visual experiences at the highest level, is receiving research and development funding from Innovate UK to expand its work in virtual production. Innovate UK is part of the United Kingdom Research and Innovation organisation whose purpose is to accelerate UK economic growth by stimulating and supporting business-led innovation. It invests in the best game-changing and commercially viable disruptive ideas through the investigation and prototyping phases.
With the grant, disguise will focus on pure research, outside its usual engineering innovation work, while maintaining a development timeline that is highly competitive within the technology sector.
The disguiseVP R&D project focuses on scalability and flexibility as key improvements to the current disguise workflow. This will enable disguise to deliver the highest quality real-time scenes in Unreal Engine, while preserving the platform’s well known robustness and reliability. Addressing mainly virtual production, disguiseVP is targeted to a totally immersive virtual production environment where extensive control and fast calibration lead to more informed decisions on set, improved collaboration and absolutely uncompromising results.
“The funding from InnovateUK enables us to have a team focussed on our long term R&D roadmap which maintains our ability to push beyond the boundaries of the present state of the art. disguiseVP is specifically focussed on making improvements to the calibration, rendering efficiency and image quality of the disguise virtual production solution. When integrated into our product, these advancements will be game changing.” says Abi Bowman, Chief of Staff at disguise, who oversees the project.
Virtual production is experiencing explosive growth, which experts predict will continue through the decade. Earlier in 2021, business analysts at Grand View Research highlighted the contrast between 2019, when the global virtual production market was valued at $1,260.5 million and projected to register an annual growth rate of 15.8 per cent from 2020 to 2027.
Virtual production is increasingly being adopted by film and episodic TV crews due to a demand for incredibly high-quality and VFX-heavy productions. This new wave of production, accelerated by the increasing accessibility and popularity of games engines like Unreal Engine in film, has led to a strong competition between streaming platforms and film studios to deliver content to an audience that is spoiled for choice. Moreover, the impact of Covid-19 on physical production has only heightened producers’ strive to avoid a “content desert.” Offering time and cost efficiencies, virtual production allows for more products to reach the market sooner and at a reduced cost.
The disguiseVP project is designed to deliver an integrated, comprehensive workflow for virtual production that is scalable to any production size and technical needs; flexible for fast changes, creative exploration and last-minute decision-making; and robust and reliable as it builds on established disguise technology. disguiseVP aims to make virtual production even more accessible, allowing teams to bring technically demanding projects to life with confidence.
Once productised, disguiseVP will further extend the company’s virtual production offerings beyond the state of the art with unrivalled quality and expedited workflows.