Melbourne welcomes world’s largest LED volume screen

Cutting-edge Los Angeles technology company NantStudios has built the world’s largest LED volume screen in Stage 1 at Docklands Studios Melbourne, lifting the city’s profile as the southern hemisphere hub for virtual production.

The next-generation volume screen consists of 6,000 LED panels stacked 40’/12m high and 289’/88m wide and a 10’/3m deep water tank in its centre.

NantStudios has built a second smaller LED volume in Stage 3 that stands 26’/8m high.

Both facilities have articulating ceiling panels that can be manipulated using proprietary 3D software to craft and shape light as an integrated component of production lighting.

The evolution of LED volume technology is shifting production methodologies across film, TV and commercials because of its ability to generate photorealistic environments and visual effects on set in real time, offering a higher level of creative flexibility.

Pioneered by the Star Wars franchise The Mandalorian, computer-generated visuals save the expense of transporting crew and equipment to distant locations, and enable filmmakers to control weather, lighting and time of day at the touch of a keyboard and within the comfort of a sound stage.

The new infrastructure at Docklands Studios Melbourne has been chosen by UCP, a division of Universal Studio Group and its local arm Matchbox Pictures as the virtual production vendor for upcoming projects set to shoot in the State of Victoria. The NantStudios facilities will also be available to local and international productions considering locating in Victoria.

NantStudios is led by Michele B Chan Soon-Shiong; President; Gary Marshall, VP of Virtual Production; and Keaton Heinrichs, VP of Operations and Business Development and is part of the NantWorks ecosystem of companies.

“The Victorian Screen Incentive has created a compelling financial rationale that will undoubtedly enhance Melbourne’s reputation as an international production hub,” said Keaton Heinrichs

VicScreen CEO Caroline Pitcher said, “The build creates a multitude of new possibilities for both local and international productions, allowing the most ambitious and imaginative stories to be brought to life in Melbourne.”

Docklands Studios Melbourne CEO Antony Tulloch added, “The scale and functionality of the NantStudios LED stages will energise the whole Docklands Studios offering.”

Thanks to NantStudios for the photographs.