NEP Netherlands and Talpa develop new technology for TV programs

February 23, 2023 Live Motion Capture and Augmented Reality are Combined in New Real-time Production Solution

In partnership with Talpa Entertainment Productions (TEP), NEP The Netherlands is supporting the new broadcast talent show, AVASTARS, combining global solutions and resources with NEP Virtual Studios divisions Halon Entertainment and Lux Machina Consulting to develop a groundbreaking new workflow that brings together the real and virtual world in real-time.

In the production of AVASTARS — debuting Friday, Feb. 24, at 8:30 p.m. on SBS6 in The Netherlands — the real and virtual world are brought together in a spectacular way through the combination of Live Motion Capture technology and Augmented Reality. This alignment of technologies from the broadcast, film and game industry is extremely sophisticated and was previously not possible in real-time. NEP developed this new workflow solution to fit within the production process of an entertainment program, suitable for a TV studio and also offering many international opportunities to roll out this new format. This new live-on-tape workflow is considered groundbreaking for a production of this kind.

Unique live-on-tape workflow

Arjan van Westerloo, Managing Director, NEP The Netherlands: “Talpa Entertainment Productions asked us a while ago to develop a live-on-tape workflow in which Live Motion Capture and Augmented Reality can be combined in a regular TV studio. This was a challenge that we seized with both hands. In AVASTARS, famous singing and dancing talents are merged into a unique Avastar using Live Motion Capture, for which they wear a special suit and a special helmet. Their movements and facial expressions are captured by more than 30 cameras, and our technical solutions provide a real-time translation into a complete, unique Avastar that can be seen in Augmented Reality on stage in the studio, where the possibilities for the Avastars, the decor, props, effects and virtual light are unlimited. To bring this all together live-on-tape, we have worked closely with fellow NEP companies from the United States and England, including NEP Virtual Studios divisions Halon Entertainment and Lux Machina Consulting. Their extensive experience in the film and game industry has helped us with the refinement of the technique for a lifelike result. It has been a unique process where everything is custom-made from start to finish. We are very grateful to our people who have worked so persistently on this challenging project and we are proud that we succeeded.”

John de Mol, Talpa Entertainment Productions: “We are very much looking forward to next Friday, to introduce all AVASTARS to the Dutch audience. It really has been an intensive collaboration between NEP and TEP, with TEP involved creatively and NEP technically from the start, and where the technology and especially the skilled people have made this format possible. What started as a wild idea has grown into a spectacular entertainment program with its own unique production process. We have not only developed a new format, but also a new technique. This allows us to develop multiple formats with this technology.”

About Talpa
Talpa is a global content house for non-scripted formats based in the Netherlands and founded by John de Mol. The company empowers creativity to produce next-level content that connects people within their homes and around the world. Talpa holds exclusive access rights to premium broadcast and streaming channels in the Netherlands and Germany and has proven to be a successful breeding ground for content creation since the dawn of the industry. Many of today’s evergreen entertainment brands originated at Talpa and are now blueprints for the international market.