What was the problem?

The cinematics pipeline needed to be as flexible as possible, accommodating late-coming changes that could be easily shown to the Director in real-time in Unreal’s Matinee. Those changes needed a path back into Maya so that any edits could be polished by Animation.

What was the solution?

The Unreal Manager allows the Animators to view their shots in Maya as they are seen in Matinee.

The pipeline starts by dropping in unedited mocap for the Cinematic Artists to integrate into their scene. Once they have a layout pass that has been approved, the Animator can export out camera, edit and audio information.

In Maya, the Animator brings in the set’s geometry and Matinee data. Selecting the active shot updates the cameras and audio so what you see is what you get. The top node of the character is driven by Matinee’s movement track so the character is properly framed.

The animator can continue polishing without the Cinematic Artists needing to update their work in Matinee. If a camera change or edit is needed later, the Animator simply re-exports the scene data and continues working.