Red Nose Day, London 2013

QED Productions uses d3 for the seven-hour broadcast of Comic Relief’s Red Nose Day on BBC One

Projection pioneers QED Productions have successfully delivered video and stage integration for Comic Relief’s celebrity-packed television broadcast on BBC One, using seven d3 4U v2.5 servers.

Dubbed “the most challenging indoor projection mapping ever attempted” by QED Productions Director Paul Wigfield, the show required nineteen high brightness Christie projectors and seven d3 servers to cover the incredible twisting and curved stage design. With QED in charge of the technical design as well as the equipment supply and operation, the seven-hour long broadcast pushed the boundaries of projection for live TV broadcast while engaging its mass-audience for the benefit of charity.

Mapping Challenges

QED used d3 throughout the production process, first creating multiple UV texture maps of the stage onto which content provided by Framestore was placed. One of the biggest challenges was to map both the underside and the downward faces of the stage bridge as one continual piece of content, with seamless joining of the upper and lower projection areas. Having a 3D simulator enabled QED to see exactly what the show was going to look like in the early stages, enabling the projector configuration and positions to be precisely worked out to achieve the desired coverage and quality. The 3D stage simulator also helped to verify the camera angles in advance.

Equipment Integration

The QED team had to seamlessly integrate the video mapping with creative lighting throughout the entire broadcast, and deal with an enormous number of practical and technical challenges. These included highly bespoke rigging of both the flown and floor-mounted projectors, the requirement to cross-fade high resolution content and to provide flexibility and show control over the stage lighting treatment areas. QED designed the system to enable control of d3 from a Compulite Vector Green lighting desk as well as the external media server inputs for additional content, all with d3 at the heart.

Credits

d3 server provider:

QED Productions

System Integrator:

QED Productions with:
Richard Porter
Dan Hall
Dave Voyce
Dan Gray
Mike Snarr
Viral Patel
Adam Bending

Equipment

d3 gear:

7 x d3 4U v2.5 rackmount

Projectors:

8 x Christie WU20K-J
6 x Christie HD20K-J
5 x Christie WU12K-M

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