Six Nations stands out on France Télévisions

France: Broadcaster France Télévisions built on its 3D rugby experience at the weekend by capturing the last match of the RBS Six Nations tournament in 3D as France took on Wales at the Stade de France, writes SVG Europe French Correspondent, Fabrice Marinoni. In addition to the transmission to roughly 40 cinemas, the match was also shown in 3D on Numericable’s 3D events channel, Ma Chaîne 3D.

“For this match I used eight camera positions,” comments director, Christophe Baudouin. “Two cameras behind each goalpost, one of which was on a camera crane. Two other fixed cameras were situated on one side of the field. A steadicam and a camera tracking system were also used. In fact, tracking shots were used in both the 2D and 3D production.”

The 3D as well as the 2D live broadcast coverage revolved around a Euro Media OB truck. The facilities provider hired a Belgian 3D specialist (Ronald Meyvisch), who was in charge of training all the technicians in the art of 3D recording techniques. Although Binocle rigs were used last year for capturing the France vs England match in 3D, this year the decision was made to use Sony rigs instead. Another notable development, inside the broadcast truck this time, was the reduced number of stereographers required. Previously, each camera position needed a dedicated stereographer, whereas now, a stereography manager oversees the work of four operators who ensure that their two assigned rigs function correctly.

“This time, the stereoscopic effect of the cameras did not need too much correction during the match. This allowed me to constantly switch between the eight cameras,” points out a delighted Baudoin.

Alimage, a company situated in Saint Denis a short distance away from the Stade de France stadium, provided dedicated realtime 3D graphics, while a Vizrt product suite and an additional overlay channel for 3D effects support the system.

Jean Abeilhou and Guy Accoceberry, the two 3D match commentators and the entire production team wore 3D glasses and kept their eyes on the screen during the whole match. It seems that they did not need to look at the field at any point. Stereoscopic coverage means journalists will have to work differently and will without doubt change the way they commentate a match in the future.

Subscribe and Get SVG Europe Newsletters