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Unity wins its first Technology and Engineering Emmy® Award

, November 21, 2018

For our collaboration with Disney Television Animation on the broadcast-quality shorts ‘Baymax Dreams’, we’ve been recognized with a Technology and Engineering Emmy® Award for excellence in engineering creativity that has materially affected the television viewing experience. Read on for why and how we’re continuing to innovate and enable success for creators in the film and animation industry.

We’re thrilled that the technical achievements powered by Unity and demonstrated in Disney Television Animation’s ‘Baymax Dreams’ were being celebrated by The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. This is further proof that the real-time revolution is happening now, and Unity is proud to support our partners as they blaze trails in this space.

The Technology and Engineering Emmy® Awards took place on Sunday, April 7, 2019, in partnership with the NAB show (National Association of Broadcasters) in Las Vegas. Unity celebrated the win alongside Simon Smith, Director, and Kaki Ettinger, Gino Guzzardo and Anthony Accardo of R&D Disney- ABC Television Group.

A few of the Baymax Dreams production team at the 2019 Technology and Engineering Emmy Awards in Las Vegas (R to L ) Anthony Accardo, Director, R+D, DTCI, The Walt Disney Company, Kaki Navarre, Senior Manager, R+D, DTCI, The Walt Disney Company, John Parsaie Graphics Engineer, Unity, Mike Wuetherick, Head of Technology, Unity
Isabelle Riva, Head of Made with Unity, Unity Adam Myhill, Creative Director, Unity
Simon Smith, Director, Baymax Dreams
Gino Guzzardo, Director, Multi-platform content, Disney Television Animation

The team behind the two-minute shorts — individuals with different backgrounds across animation, film, Virtual Reality (VR), and gaming — took a new approach to building the workflow and crafting the story, one that reflected best practices from across mediums and put the needs of artists and the director at the center of the pipeline. For example, during the concept phase, artwork and characters were built and reviewed in VR, allowing for higher fidelity review cycles and more creative inspiration around environments and style. Graphics Engineer John Parsaie was able to create materials like Baymax’s emissive ‘night light’ glow using Unity’s High Definition Render Pipeline (HDRP.) He and Unity artist and evangelist Keijiro Takahashi, also collaborated on the voxelization effect you see when Baymax first enters his dream state.

The team employed a powerful combination of features, including Timeline (Unity’s multi-track sequencer), Cinemachine’s suite of smart cameras and Post-Processing Stack v2, to do layout, lighting, and compositing and to iterate quickly without sacrificing quality of work.

When they reached the third episode, the team had ramped up the pace of production — it took only three weeks to complete, start to finish. This is because once the pipeline is up and running, creators can work in this faster real-time environment while repurposing digital assets at maximum speed.

The benefits the ‘Baymax Dreams’ team experienced (both from a creative standpoint and in collaborative team culture) further proves what is possible when talented artists and engineers are empowered with real-time technology. You can watch the shorts on the Disney Channel YouTube, and learn more about the production process in our behind-the-scenes video:

See our Film and Animation Summit recap for more incredible short films made with Unity, like Sonder, Mr Carton or Crow: The Legend.

If you’re an animation studio interested in learning more about real-time workflows and technology, we look forward to hearing from you; you can request a free consultation on your pipeline by our team of experts in real-time filmmaking.

6 replies on “Unity wins its first Technology and Engineering Emmy® Award”

Great job guys!! Just FYI – the last two links at the bottom of the article do not work or it says, “Not available” on the page.

Congratulations! Well deserved recognition, not just for Baymax Dreams but for all the work you guys have done over the past couple of years to make Unity such a versatile engine, and a pleasure to work with. Keep it up! 2019 features are looking sweet too :)

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