SAN MARCOS, TX — Hill Country Studios (www.hillcountry.studio) has entered into a partnership with Houston-based video production company Vision in which Vision will serve as its lead technology partner on two new virtual production stages. Vision will be responsible for designing, installing and maintaining LED-wall stage technology (LED volume) in two of Hill Country Studios’ stage spaces. The dual virtual production stages will rank among the largest in North America and the first of their kind in Texas. Construction is slated to begin in early 2023.
Virtual production uses interactive video game engine environments to create realtime digital movie and television sets. Vision’s extensive experience in high-end production and augmented reality development will allow Hill Country Studios to offer bespoke technical workflow solutions and customizable stages agile enough to support a wide range of production crew needs.
“From day one, we knew that Hill Country Studios was going to be one of the most cutting-edge film studios in North America and a facility that moves the industry forward,” says Cory McLoud, co-founder and CEO of Hill Country Studios. “To build a tier one facility, you need tier one talent. That’s why we’ve partnered with Vision to bring world-class digital production technology to Texas and beyond.”
A main focus of Vision’s efforts will be the installation of LED volumes at Hill Country Studios. LED volumes, which serve as a technological replacement for traditional green screens, are a next-generation approach to filmmaking that dramatically reduce the time, effort and cost of digital production for film and TV projects. LED volume production studios also enable crews to begin visualization prior to the first day of a shoot, further streamlining post editing workflows. The technology is being increasingly used to produce major films and television shows, with recent examples including The Batman, The Mandalorian, Westworld and 1899.
“Hill Country Studios is set apart by our uniquely people-driven approach to design philosophy, which is creating an efficient, easy-to-use shooting ecosystem,” explains Blake Kotrla, Hill Country Studios’ chief technology officer. “Our team’s background is in production, which drives every decision we make. We’re building toward creating a better way to do things on-set, including introducing technological advancements that will help everyone from studio execs to below-the-line workers.”
This partnership will unite Vision’s team of skilled virtual production experts with the decades of combined production experience on Hill Country Studios’ team. Ultimately, the collaboration will enhance Hill Country Studios’ production capabilities, propelling the company’s mission to harness innovation and emerging technology to foster creative storytelling.
“We’re thrilled to join Hill Country Studios in bringing the next generation of film and television to Texas,” says Josh Beard, CEO at Vision. “Our team is eager to establish Hill Country as a go-to LED volume operation for major motion picture and video projects, which will drive innovation and advance talent in the field of virtual production.”