We help game developers and filmmakers tell stories that captivate their audience.


Cinema Director

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Tell your story with Cinema Director, a must have companion to the Unity Game Engine

Cinema Director is a modular timeline editor for Unity. It enables game developers, film professionals and machinima gurus to control, sequence and manipulate almost any Unity game object and its associated properties, allowing for dynamic cutscenes and in-game sequencing, all without the need for scripting or programming.


A bowl full of awesome
cinematic goodness!

Some features include:

  • Shot tracks that allow control of camera cuts.
  • Audio tracks that make editing Audio in Unity quick and easy.
  • An extendable Actions library, containing over 60 actions, that allow triggering of transitions, animations (Legacy/Mecanim), physics and much more.
  • Live Timeline Scrubbing and Previewing allows you to make fine adjustments to your project without having to run unity in play mode. (Mecanim animations and physics events require play mode to preview).
  • Advanced Curve Editing for manipulating properties over time.
  • Actor and Multi-Actor grouping to keep your sequence organized.
  • Themes that change the look and feel of your scene with themes such as horror, noire, dream sequence and more.
  • Open source run-time code. You won’t ship anything to your end users that you aren’t aware of.
  • Extend the Director control by adding your own tracks, timeline objects and associated controls with little effort.
  • Easily create storyboards for your project.
  • Many more awesome features that a creative mind will love!

What we want for our Users:

  • Share your project’s story and atmosphere without restriction through the use of an intuitive visual timeline editor.
  • The ability to easily create cutscenes to show off your project and help you be successful in your Kickstarter, Steam Greenlight and other marketing campaigns.
  • Re-factor and re-organize your cutscenes without strain. Authoring great cutscenes requires a lot of time and editing, you shouldn’t have to pre-plan how everything will play out.
  • Access to a library of actions and events that cover a range of cutscene requirements. Awesome results without programming.
  • The ability to extend the software extension to meet your own game’s needs (open source).
  • Access to a tool similar to Unreal’s Matinee and Source Filmmaker for Unity.

Grab your Kinect, love Unity all over again and operate with this simple formula:

Cinema Mo Cap + Unity =
fun!

Cinema Mo Cap

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Cinema Mo Cap, is the perfect, cost effective Motion Capture tool for Game Developers and Machinima movie makers using the Unity game engine for their creative projects.

Put your project in motion...


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Cinema Pro Cams

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Cinema Pro Cams is a professional grade camera and lens toolkit for the Unity game engine. We’ve worked with film industry researchers to provide technology that allows you to implement lenses and effects which comply to real-world cinematic film standards. Cinema Pro Cams gives you, the game developer, film professional or machinima hobbyist using Unity, that true Cinematic look and feel that you demand, and that your audience is looking for.


Professional 2D/3D Cameras
For Unity

Some Features Include:

  • Industry Standard Cooke Prime Lens Kit (12mm to 180mm). Researched and calculated to run inside of Unity
  • Accurate real-world Nodal Point Offset calculations to lens selection.
  • Industry Standard aspect ratio selection. Select from aspects such as full, 16:9 digital, Academy and Anamorphic.
  • Aperture (F-Stop) settings and its effect on camera image. F-Stop values calculated to actual real-world lens behavior.
  • Near and Far Depth (DOF) automatic calculations depending on focal distance to subject, lens selection and Aperture.
  • 3D Stereoscopic camera support including industry standard rigs such as Tango3D and 3ality rigs. Industry standard output modes including standard and reversed interlaced, side by side and anaglyph.
  • Live, dynamic camera preview during camera creation and editing. See exactly what you will be capturing, including image effects, aperture and aspect, anytime, anywhere.
  • Steady Cam movement and settings for camera motion during run-time. Control natural camera movements from subtle breathing to explosions, and anywhere in between depending on the feel and mood of your project.

Cinema Themes provides a robust palette of over 50 texture lookup tables for Unity Pro.

Combine with Cinema Pro Cams and Cinema Director to make Unity the ultimate tool for creating advanced Cinematics with your film previz, machinima or game development project.

Visual Effects
for Unity Pro

Cinema Themes

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Cinema Themes is a collection of visual effects for Unity Pro. Use Cinema Themes to create a whole new look and feel for your project in little time. Whatever mood you are looking for in a game or film project, there will be a Cinema Theme for it!

Paint your picture...


PRESS RELEASE: Faculty, Students, and Industry Collaborate on Classic-Game Inspired Cinematic Projects

UW-STOUT Logo

October 13, 2014 For Immediate Release:

Faculty, Students, and Industry Collaborate on Classic-Game Inspired Cinematic Projects

In an experimental teaching project, two University of Wisconsin-Stout art and design faculty members, Kevin Pontuti and Dave Beck, brought students together from multiple classes to explore the convergence of cinema, animation and games. Using the classic-game ZORK as inspiration, students worked in teams across two classes creating live-action and computer generated cinematics.

A video and blog that document the project have just been released: http://stoutcinemagames.wordpress.com/

“Our goal was to set up our curriculum, course structure and projects to more closely mimic the entertainment industry’s convergence within and around cinema, animation and games.” Pontuti quotes. “With our combined interest in transmedia storytelling and complementary research agendas, the idea to team teach our Cinema and 3D animation courses emerged. Building upon our experience from the previous year with implementing shorter cross-course projects, this year we decided to devote the whole semester to larger research and production projects. And since we didn’t have the budget for traditional team teaching (two instructors in one class) we decided to schedule our two courses to meet at the same time and near one another. This parallel scheduling meant that both courses could meet as one large group, separately and/or in small cross-course teams, depending on instructional and project needs.”

“Since we were framing the semester around the idea of Cinema and Game convergence, we decided to craft a project where the teams would create film trailers or hook scenes for a game that was being adapted into a film, or basically a game-inspired short.” After kicking around a number of story adaption ideas and existing games that could be translated into films, Pontuti and Beck decided to use the classic text-based adventure game ZORK as a point of departure for the project. (http://www.infocom-if.org/downloads/downloads.html)

ZORK is one of the earliest interactive fiction computer games, written in 1977-1979 by Tim Anderson, Marc Blanc, Bruce Daniels and David Lebling at MIT. The game was later divided into three sections and distributed by Infocom, and still has a cult classic following today. The “engine” understands basic text commands such as “Look Up”, “Go East”, or “Open Mailbox”. Each of these commands solicits a response from the game that describes the outcome of the command. “2015 marks the 35th anniversary of ZORK so it seemed like a perfect opportunity to celebrate the game.” said Beck.

As the faculty members finalized goals and teaching methods for the project, they reached out to Dan Gamsby of Cinema Suite Inc. (http://cinema-suite.com/) about using their soon-to-be-released software Cinema Director for the course. Cinema Director is a groundbreaking new previsualization tool that allows filmmakers and game artists to collaborate by making films within the Unity game engine. “Since most of our game design students were already comfortable with the Unity engine, it was a perfect stepping stone into Cinema Director”, said Pontuti. “It allowed our students to build upon their experience with a familiar software application and expand into uncharted territory”. Cinema Suite Inc. also provided their motion capture program, Cinema MoCap which allows users to use a Microsoft Kinect to quickly capture performances that can be mapped onto characters. “Being able to expose the students to Cinema Suite’s products allows them to get up to speed with Unity much more quickly and easily. Students that aren’t programmers can now collaborate as a team and quickly generate content with Unity,” added Dan Gamsby. During the product beta-testing phase, student leaders were able to communicate directly with the technical team at Cinema Suite providing input into the development process. “Our partnership with UW-STOUT was critical for the future development of our cinematic tools. This collaborative project gave us in-depth feedback on our products, and allowed us to make them even better for the general public” continued Gamsby.

With the increased use of computer generated imagery (CGI) and visual effects in popular films, new tools and methods for “previsualization” are being implemented in the to help directors, producers and highly collaborative production and post-production teams to work together. By previsualizing all the shots and sequences in a film, it allows all the team members to be on the same page when it comes time to create the film “for real”. In the past, storyboards were the primary previsualization tool for directors to help “imagine” their films. Although they are still often utilized, many productions are moving towards 3D visualization, allowing the entire film to be viewed in a format that resembles a low-resolution 3D animated movie.

Students working on the live-action teams were able to utilize a local natural landmark, known as Crystal Cave (http://www.acoolcave.com/). They used it as a filming location that the university rented out for the students. “We were able to connect with cave owner Eric McMaster and told him about our project. After our initial scouting visit, we called Eric back and asked him what the cost would be to rent the caves for some shooting time and were extremely pleased when he told us that he’d donate the cave rental time as long as we agreed to cover the cost of his tour guide to supervise the students. The one catch was that we had to wait until the bats started to stir out of their hibernation in late April or early May. ‘No problem!’”

In April, Pontuti shared the plans for the unique project with Canon at the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Show (http://www.nabshow.com/). The NAB Show is an international trade show for cinema and television held in Las Vegas each year. Pontuti was delighted when Canon offered to provide a high-end specialized camera for filming in the dark caves of rural Wisconsin. Students were able to use the cutting edge Canon equipment for four weeks both in the caves and for other aspects of the project.

In total, the ZORK project included about 20 students working on various live-action, visual effects and previsualization teams for four-months. “The collaboration and teamwork component of this project cannot be undervalued”, said Pontuti. “Students had to adapt to team positions—director, cinematographer, editor, 3D artists, game engine scripter, etc. and learn how to best communicate and time manage these large multi-stepped projects. Since communication and teamwork skills are regularly listed as a priority for game and entertainment design fields, we’re always looking for creative ways to work these objectives into our classes”.

Pontuti and Beck plan to continue with their cross-course projects in the future.

Contacts:
Kevin Pontuti pontutik@uwstout.edu
Dave Beck beckdav@uwstout.edu

Links:

In-depth article and blog with student artwork and examples: https://stoutcinemagames.wordpress.com

Cinema Suite : http://cinema-suite.com/

For more information on the UW-Stout programs, please visit the following links:
BFA in Entertainment Design: http://www.uwstout.edu/programs/bfaed/
BS in Game Design and Development: http://www.uwstout.edu/programs/bsgdd/


Who We Are

Dan Gamsby

Technical Lead

Old School C64 enthusiast and musician, lover of classic point and click adventure, sports & Elder Scrolls games, Star Wars/Trek and LOTR.

on Twitter Dan Gamsby on Linked In

Adrian Harrington

Lead Developer

Kills zombies in his spare time, climbs rocks and buys games on Steam that he never gets time to play.

Adrian Harrington on Linked In

Mitch Theriault

Digital Media Producer

Film editor, visual effects nerd, and tech enthusiast. Spends most days experimenting with After Effects plug-ins and watching cat videos.

@mitchtheriault on Twitter Mitch Theriault on Linked In Mitch Theriault on Twitter

John Carlan

Sr. Advisor

Wanna-be gamer, sports enthusiast and stereoscopic 3D Go Pro action video producer.

Ted Lee

Sr. Advisor

Flyer of airplanes, MacGyver of electronics, avid outdoorsman, audiophile, videophile and lover of all thinks 3D, geek and tech.


Cinema Suite Inc. thanks the following industry partners: