A look back: Knight Rider Plates

In late 2008, EdgeCentric was tapped to shoot additional driving plates for NBC's Knight Rider by the visual effects team at Master Key VFX.  We were presented with a unique challenge, namely needing to shoot driving plates without the knowing ahead of time what angles the green screen unit would be shooting.  Also, we weren't shooting plates for just any car, these plates would be for KITT, they had to be special...

 

 

 

The plan we created involved shooting stabilized plates from a Libra III mount on the Red camera shooting 4k.  The stabilization was necessary to allow speed changes without altering the vibration or shake.  If you speed up shakey shots, they feel sped up.  If you speed up stabilized shots and then add a temporally correct shake after the fact, they feel natural.  These shots utilized a specialized spherical wide angle lens that allowed us to capture a 185 degree hemisphere in a single shot.  We also mounted two side looking HVX200 cameras to capture the flat plate required for hostess tray profile angles.

 

This hemisphere was processed and unwrapped with custom software to create a bubble that could be reshot with a virtual 3d camera to match the motion of the foreground green screen camera.

 


The result looks something like this...