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MoCap Legend Selects Ascension's ReActor 2 for Cotoons TV Series

Legendary broadcast animation studio director Herve Tardif (DONKEY KONG COUNTRY) has chosen Ascension Technology's ReActor2 -- active-optical motion-capture workstation -- for his latest TV production. COTOONS is a seven-minute, 26-episode 3D animated childrens series being created by Tardif's Paris-based animation studio 3dclic.

"I chose ReActor for several reasons, said Tardif. Most importantly, there is less reconstruction (data clean-up) time when capturing with an active-optical system like ReActor2. With passive optical systems, if the actor walks in and out of the capture area, he needs to be re-calibrated. That takes a lot of valuable time in a production environment. ReActor2 does not need calibration."

Tardif further added that due to the size of his studio, any passive optical system would have only provided a very small capture volume. The lower price of ReActor2 compared to other optical systems was also a factor.

85% of COTOONS will be motion captured, while the rest will be keyframed. COTOONS (airing in early 2005) features a special universe designed for the preschool child -- a parallel world next door to Earth, where the four Cotoons (Punky, Tulip, Wabap and Zoom) live. In each episode, there is a dilemma for the Cotoons (and vicariously their viewer friends) to solve. COTOONS, produced by Film en Stock of France and Zone 3 of Canada, is about the senses -- observing, hearing, smelling, tasting and touching. In each episode, there is a two-minute sequence where two of the characters are composited over live-action.

3dclic (, headquartered in Paris, France, is a 3D production studio that produces television shows, commercials and interactive Web experiences.

Ascension Technology Corp. (, based in Burlington, Vermont, is a world leader in magnetic, optical and inertial motion tracking solutions for 3D computer graphics applications in animation, biomechanics, simulation, virtual reality, medicine and military targeting systems.

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Rick DeMott
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