Creating the 3D Motion Comics for Battle Castle.

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Parallax Films remains committed to creating innovative storytelling through the use of 3D interfaces.
To this end, our team embraced a new challenge when we produced a series of 3D motion comics in conjunction with the television series, Battle Castle.  We had the technical skill and creative tools to build and execute each of the phases – script, production and post but lacked experience of putting these phases together in the 3D comic genre.  So with lots of enthusiasm we dove in and this is what we learned along the way.

  1. We overwrote the comics.  We had figured on 40 panels for each comic – but this created a very complicated narrative for a short form genre.  We figured this out after assembling the material in post.   The upside was we had lots of material to work with to sharpen the words and create dynamic imagery.
  2. Designing and shooting the panels involved numerous poses and actions from each of the main characters.   But ultimately neither Kings nor Castles move much.  So we dropped these characters into scenes with action going on around them.   The King can be looking off yonder or pondering his next steps – while the soldiers and errant knights march by or engage in battle.
  3. Blood splatters make it all good.   Whenever possible and for the smallest of reasons we would add the ubiquitous blood splatter to fight scenes and occasionally if the action started to lag – just because.
  4. Music and sound effects were critical to stitching the story together and taking it to the next level.
  5. 3D effects and volume were enhanced by adding particulate layers, such as smoke, fire, rain and of course, blood. These created a series of depth cues that led the eye to the action and enhanced the gritty harshness of the environment.

The motion comics have already been released both in 2D and Anaglyphic 3D through the Battle Castle universe.

Today, we’re publishing a side by side version for those with a 3D monitor or television display.  These comics are available on the Parallax Youtube Channel accessible through Bluray DVD players.  We’ve created a playlist with all the comics.

Here is the first,

On a technical note, we have tested Playstation in the past, but unfortunately the interface with Youtube does not allow you to increase the resolution so the picture quality and 3D experience is poor.

Ian Herring, President

@ianherring

3D Camera Hunting at NAB2012

Parallax Films continues its commitment to debating and developing 3D talent, technology and dialogue.  This week Sean White shares his thoughts about developments in 3D camera technology.

Sean F. White is a Camera Operator/DOP for countless international documentary projects.  He is a trained stereographer and has shot and delivered 3D content for Blowdown 3D and Battle Castle.

On this trip to NAB, I was primarily focused on researching 3D camera systems for television documentary acquisition. While there has been some progress in 3D technology since last year, a huge void remains for production companies who seek professional results but don’t have feature film or sports broadcaster budgets.

I’m looking for an integrated twin lens camera system we can take into the field.

Here’s what I found:

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Castles in 3D: stereoscopic stills of Malbork Castle, captured by Parallax Film Productions

As part of our ongoing commitment to unparalleled 3D production, Parallax Film Productions is thrilled to share stereoscopic 3D stills and video footage of several castles throughout Europe and the Middle East. This exclusive online content was captured during the filming of our current production, Battle Castle, an action documentary about medieval castles. 

This week’s feature Battle Castle 3D stills are of the Teutonic Knights’ Malbork Castle. Battle Castle: Malbork makes its world premiere Thursday night on History Television at 9 p.m. ET. Check your local listings here.

These high-resolution stereoscopic 3D stills were photographed and rendered by our Director of Photography/Stereographer Sean F. White using the Dubois Optimized technique in Adobe Photoshop. Although the colours are not true to reality, this techniques improves the overall comfort of viewing the images by reducing ghosting and other retinal discomfort common with standard red/cyan images.

The original images are 5K resolution per eye. They’ve been resized to 2K for faster downloading and viewing on the web.

Ian Herring, President

@ianherring

This week in Battle Castle-March 16

It’s an exciting time here at Parallax Film Productions – with our current six-part series Battle Castle in the midst of its world premiere run on History Television in Canada, our audience – and the press – are talking about it on air and online.

Here are this week’s transmedia highlights, direct from the Battle Castle universe:

On YouTube

 

BattleCastle.TV: Conwy Castle Motion Comic

Conwy Castle’s motion comic reveals the bloody history of Edward I’s relationship with his neighbours the Welsh which resulted in the construction and sieging of his great Iron Ring of Castles in Snowdonia, North Wales. The castle’s build, as well as this siege, are profiled in Battle Castle Episode 4: Conwy Castle.

On Twitter

#BattleCastle/@battlecastle, March 15

Highlights from live tweeting leading up to and during the 9 pm ET simulcast of Battle Castle: Conwy on History Television:

@EFreilich The start of March Madness, Crosby’s return, and #BattleCastle tonight. SO MUCH GOOD TV!

@battleCastle 1 hr left until #ConwyCastle makes its world premiere on @HistoryTVCanada! Meet Tristian Jones, a Modern-Day Castellan http://ow.ly/9GBoE

@lostbraincells Here we go @battlecastle @becsnow Loved that opening part to camera from the beginning!

@ntomlinson I want one of those shields! #BattleCastle

@becsnow Are you watching battle castle and learning what the Hammer of the Scots did before he hammered the scots? #BattleCastle

@medievalists The Welsh are going to attack these unfinished castles! Kind of like attacking the unfinished #DeathStar #BattleCastle

3 ways to #gomedieval

This week, we featured #gomedieval moments from Conwy Castle:

Reads: The episode

Location: Wales

The build: Conwy was built by King Edward I of England in the late 13th century in Snowdonia, northern Wales. Part of the famous “Iron Ring” of fortifications, it was designed by Edward’s top military architect, Master James of St. George, to suppress Welsh rebellions against English rule. A striking example of Edward’s distinct vision, this fortification is strategically positioned on the River Conwy. Its deadly entrance, lofty crenellated towers, and cleverly-designed river gate are statements to its determined King and enduring domination.

The siege: This stronghold was attacked by the Madog ap Llywelyn after he launched a campaign against the English in 1294. The leader, calling himself Prince of Wales, was armed with the powerful longbow. His army targeted several castles including Harlech – which was besieged – and Caernarfon – where the town and castle were sacked. Edward was present in the castle during the siege of Conwy and the outcome of the uprising would not only decide the destiny of England’s holdings in Wales – it would also inspire the King to attempt to perfect castle engineering by raising the mighty Beaumaris.

In Pictures: the Conwy Castle Flickr set

 

Video: The Conwy Castle Trailer

Official trailer for Battle Castle: Conwy, which made its world premiere Thursday, March 16 at 9 p.m. ET on History Television. This episode profiles the build and siege of Conwy Castle, as well as other castles in King Edward I’s Iron Ring. Also known as Edward Longshanks, this king of England built several strongholds in northern Wales in the late 13th century in an attempt to subjugate the local population.

Want more Battle Castle action?

A world of castle engineering, bloody siegecraft, and epic clashes that transform mortals into legends awaits …

Join us.

www.battlecastle.tv

 

“Battle Castle” Lays Siege On-Air and Online

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HOLLY CARINCI PUBLICITY

MEDIA RELEASE

“Battle Castle” Lays Siege On-Air and Online

VANCOUVER March 1, 2012 – Vancouver’s Parallax Film Productions has done everything in its considerable power to push the boundaries of real TV with their series “Battle Castle,” the new featuresque documentary airing on History Television. The show is an interactive, trans-medieval journey into castle engineering, bloody siegecraft, and epic clashes that transform mortals into legends. Hosted by UK celebrity Dan Snow, the show takes its viewers over six one-hour timeslots to Syria, France, Spain, Wales, Poland and England delving into the stories of six fascinating castles: Crac des Chevaliers, Chateau Gâillard, Dover, Conwy, Malbork, and Malaga.

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This week in Battle Castle-Feb. 17

It’s an exciting time here at Parallax Film Productions – in less than a week, our current production Battle Castle will make its world broadcast premiere on History Television in Canada.

Leading up to the six-part series, there’s been so much going on online that it’s become an experience in and of itself. Here are this week’s highlights, direct from the Battle Castle universe:

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Canadian production company harnesses social media, international team to create unprecedented interactive documentary experience

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Canadian production company harnesses social media, international team to create unprecedented interactive documentary experience

Multiplatform transmedia content and targeted online marketing pulls thousands of fans into Battle Castle universe before tv documentary series broadcasts.

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The Malbork Castle page, part of Battle Castle’s interactive documentary experience.

Vancouver, B.C. – Medieval Media Inc., a Vancouver-area production company, has created an unparalleled immersive online world for its upcoming action documentary series Battle Castle.

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