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Eros, Epic Games Partner to Bring Unreal Engine to Bollywood

Bollywood studio Eros and Fortnite maker Epic Games are partnering to bring the latter’s Unreal Engine to film production in India, the two companies have announced. That will bring real-time rendering technology to movie sets and post-production, and help in delivering high-quality pre-visualisation, virtual production, and in-camera visual effects (VFX).

Unreal Engine has been traditionally used in games, but it’s branched out into filmmaking recently. Epic Games has previously worked with the likes of Disney-owned Lucasfilm and ILM (Industrial Light & Magic) on Star Wars movies, series, and VR experiences, Weta Digital and 20th Century Fox on the Planet of the Apes reboot series, and Lionsgate on John Wick 3.

With the help of Unreal Engine, filmmakers can conceptualise an entire scene in computer-generated imagery (CGI) to see how it will look in a finished format. This is known as pre-visualisation, or pre-vis in industry parlance. Virtual production involves real-time rendering of CGI elements, such as dragons on Game of Thrones.

If that doesn’t make sense, watch this video.

Epic unveiled a fifth generation of Unreal Engine back in May, which is expected to arrive in late 2021.

“We are extremely excited to collaborate with Epic Games to further popularise real-time production to India through Unreal Engine,” Eros Group’s chief content officer Ridhima Lulla said in a mailed statement. “Eros is innovative by nature, and with Unreal Engine, we can bring in better cost efficiency for all our film and television projects across the globe.”

“As key figures in Bollywood production, we are excited to support Eros as they help to spearhead virtual production in India,” Epic Games’s GM for South-East Asia and India, Quentin Staes-Pole, added. “Real-time technology presents a huge opportunity to transform storytelling and the art of filmmaking for creators around the world, enabling new creative horizons and lifting quality, while reducing costs and time to market.”

Eros is known for films such as Bajrangi Bhaijaan and Bajirao Mastani. In April, it announced a merger with Hollywood studio STX Entertainment.

Can Netflix force Bollywood to reinvent itself? We discussed this on Orbital, our weekly technology podcast, which you can subscribe to via Apple Podcasts or RSS. You can also download the episode or just hit the play button below.

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