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SK Telecom works with virtual production companies to expand media ecosystem through VFX studio

By Lim Chang-won Posted : October 12, 2022, 16:10 Updated : October 13, 2022, 08:18

[Courtesy of SK Telecom]

SEOUL -- SK Telecom, a top mobile carrier in South Korea, formed a consortium with three virtual production companies to expand a domestic media ecosystem through its visual effects studio featuring two LED wall stages that can create realistic graphics to remove the need for location shooting. Visual effects (VFX) is the integration of live-action footage and computer CG elements to create realistic imagery.

SK Telecom (SKT) opened the studio named "Tech-driven Entertainment for Asian Movement (TEAM)" in June 2022 to provide an optimal environment for content production via two different LED wall stages. Volume Stage can be used for the production of entertainment content including soap operas, advertisements and music videos, while XR Stage can be used for content with indoor backgrounds such as live commerce content and live streaming for events like web seminars and conferences. 

SKT said that Team Studio would build intellectual property, VFX, and XR-related platforms to lead the future digital content industry by adding SKT's 5G, artificial intelligence and cloud technologies to each company's virtual production technology and content production know-how. XR refers to all digital environments created using virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR) and mixed reality (MR). 

"The virtual production market will continue to expand due to the spread of various media content beyond reality and rising expectations of customers who consume them," SKT's global media support office head Kim Hyuk said in a statement on October 12. He said that Team Studio would lead the expansion of a virtual production ecosystem.

Virtual production seamlessly combines physical and virtual elements using a suite of software tools. Studios can save time and money by filming on a stage and viewing virtual graphics together in real time. Visual effects are worked on and iterated throughout pre-production. 

Xon Studios, the first virtual production company in South Korea, will provide LED wall studio operation solutions and technical know-how. "The team studio consortium will play all genres in the virtual production area based on various experiences and technologies held by each company," Xon Studios CEO Chang Won-ick said, suggesting the development can provide total virtual production solutions.

Using various new media content production know-how through 8K ultra-high-definition video production technology, Media L is in charge of stable content production and project management. Dooribun is dedicated to customized virtual projects such as realistic media-based web seminars and conferences with its solution combining limited offline space with XR technology to implement a virtual space.

SKT would expand cooperation with webtoon, web novel, and entertainment companies, as well as movie, drama, and advertising producers. The mobile carrier will also expand the diversity of real-time live content such as celebrity fan meetings, showcases, corporate conferences, and web seminars. 

Building on its leading fixed and mobile network infrastructure, SKT aims to create a global content ecosystem by promoting collaboration between TEAM and other studios. SKT thinks that virtual production utilizing LED walls is growing rapidly in the global media industry. 

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