ChyronHego Powers Tinker Bell and Other FX in NBC’s ‘Peter Pan Live!’

Lyric Pro, Mosaic, and virtual placement graphics rendering and tracking employed
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MELVILLE, N.Y.—ChyronHego’s Lyric Pro graphics creation software and Virtual Placement system played roles in NBC’s “Peter Pan Live!,” which aired to an estimated television viewing audience of more than 9 million on Dec. 4.

Using Lyric Pro running on ChyronHego’s Mosaic graphics platform, technicians created the animated character of Tinker Bell and manipulated her appearance and interaction with live actors during the broadcast. In addition, ChyronHego’s Virtual Placement was used to place virtual graphics such as a starry night sky and an oceanscape into the live broadcast stream, which created a seamless illusion for home viewers of the characters’ travels to Neverland.

The ChyronHego team collaborated with “Peter Pan Live!” creative professionals to define the look and feel of Tinker Bell. As rehearsals progressed, the team worked closely with the production’s associate director to understand how the computer-generated character would respond to actors and props on the stage. Lyric Pro was used to manage the conditional logic needed to portray various emotions for Tinker Bell, and MIDI data of her “voice” (created on a musical keyboard) was imported into Lyric Pro so that her “speaking” could trigger changes in her appearance, such as highlights and glows.

Using Virtual Placement, the ChyronHego team created virtual graphics representing the night sky and the ocean to create a bridge between different stage sets and support the illusion that the characters were traveling as they “flew” out of the nursery, over London, and to Neverland. Based on tracking points taken of items within each set, Virtual Placement was used to track the virtual backgrounds together with the camera’s movements, as if they were part of the real environment. Virtual Placement was also used to track Tinker Bell’s movements and create illusions such as her appearing to fly inside a pottery jug.