Tonight, France 2 is launching its “Vortex” event series. To transport us into its unique universe, the series uses many technologies, especially for its virtual reality scenes. How were they shot? We tell you everything.
Tonight, France 2 is launching its Vortex event series. Carried by Tomer Sisley and Camille Claris, it plunges us into the heart of a police investigation straddling two eras and two love stories that are written in the past and the future. And to transport us into its unique universe, this ambitious fantasy thriller uses many technologies.
In 2025, the crime scenes are entirely reconstructed in virtual reality in order to be studied in their smallest details. When a time rift opens on a crime scene in which he sees Mélanie, the woman he lost 27 years earlier in what seemed to be an accident, Ludovic, captain of the judicial police, puts himself in the head of everything to save her from certain death. In 11 days, he will then have to change the course of history to save her. However, altering the past could have serious consequences for the present and Ludovic risks losing the life he has worked so hard to rebuild with his new wife Parvana and their son Sam.
If Vortex takes us on a breathtaking race against the clock, the advanced technology used for the needs of the scenario has been cleverly put at the service of emotion. Indeed, it is in the virtual reality room that Ludovic will be able to find Mélanie on the beach of Corsen where she died 27 years ago. Obviously strong scenes that required special care.
HOW WERE THE VIRTUAL REALITY SCENES SHOT?
The crime scene and the space-time fault are located on a beach in Brittany where Mélanie lost her life. Mélanie and Ludovic are therefore in the same place but in two different eras. She on the beach in 1998 and he in the virtual reality room which reconstructs this same beach in 2025.
To bring these sequences to life, the series used the same technology as The Mandalorian and the green backdrops were replaced with walls of LEDs. Corsen beach was then fully mapped before being reconstructed in the Epinay Studios on a specific set comprising the following sets: a 15-by-6-meter LED screen on which images of the reconstructed beach were projected in 3D or plates, 10 tons of sand as well as fake rocks similar to those of the beach in Brittany in order to offer the actors a total immersion.
In total, more than forty sequences were entirely made in virtual production as revealed to us by Slimane-Baptiste Berhoun, the director, during the promotion of the series. And to clarify,The pivotal element of that is that Ludovic can never take the wind when he meets Mélanie on the beach because he is in a virtual reality room. And that is part of the respect for the fantastic universe that we had imposed on ourselves. So when we are with him in this virtual reality room, Mélanie takes the wind but not him. On the other hand, when we are with her on the beach, it can be dark and even rain because we are not in virtual reality.”
Whether from Ludovic’s virtual or Mélanie’s photorealistic angle, the director had to adapt the technology of the LED wall according to the point of view in which he found himself. “Suddenly it’s going to be 3D, suddenly it’s going to be flat to really be on something that was filmed on the beach.”, he explains.
Finally, Vortex has more than 450 fake plans. Enough to present a series that is both ambitious and innovative, which demonstrates that in France too you can do fantastic things.
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Vortex on France 2: how were the virtual reality scenes shot?
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