Dark Slope and Little Engine Moving Pictures announce Virtual Production partnership

In General XR News

January 31, 2023 – Dark Slope, a provider of solutions for multi-sensory entertainment, virtual reality experiences, immersive games, and motion capture-driven virtual production for television, has announced that it has partnered with Little Engine Moving Pictures, a Canadian entertainment company that develops, produces and distributes original, innovative TV series and interactive content, to deliver virtual production solutions.

According to Dark Slope, the two companies are collaborating on a unique virtual production process that integrates Dark Slope’s advanced motion capture techniques into Little Engine’s puppetry/animation hybrid process, developed by creator, showrunner and animator Ben Mazzotta. The workflow is currently in production for an upcoming Little Engine Moving Pictures preschool series.

“Dark Slope’s expertise is truly elevating our animated series through virtual production” said Maria Kennedy, owner and EP at Little Engine Moving Pictures. “Our characters and world evolved significantly, from us puppeteering marionettes against green screen with motion-tracked faces animated in post, to real actors embodying our characters through high quality motion capture. The transformation to 3D animated characters in our 2D animated world is a real game changer.”

Motion capture from Dark Slope – pictured here are MOCAP gloves from Manus and an Xsens MOCAP suit.

Dark Slope stated that this method helps to benefit the quality and speed of the production, while also being more cost effective. It also allows for the production team to plan and iterate on how the story is told and make dynamic adjustments with actors as they record the animation in real time. This also allows for near-final looks of the animation’s action to take place far earlier than with traditional productions.

“It is such a pleasure to work with the creative team at Little Engine Moving Pictures to help realize their vision,” added Christine Thompson, Head of Animation Production at Dark Slope. “Dark Slope has a talented team with the know-how to match the right virtual production technology and techniques with the specific vision of the show – from motion capture for animation, to LED volume for live action content.”

Dark Slope offers advanced motion capture and virtual production technologies to create television programs and immersive games for its original IP, co-productions and clients. For more information on the company, click here.

Little Engine Moving Pictures develops, produces and distributes original, innovative TV series and interactive content for an international audience of Kids and Family. For more information on the company, click here.

Image credit: Dark Slope / Little Engine Moving Pictures

About the author

Sam Sprigg

Sam is the Founder and Managing Editor of Auganix. With a background in research and report writing, he has been covering XR industry news for the past seven years.