USC Computer-Generated Imagery In PBS Nova Documentary
January 8, 2008
Innovations from USC's Institute for Creative Technologies realistically depict Parthenon as it appeared in ancient Greece.
Providence Pictures, an Emmy award-winning production company, licensed and used USC computer-generated imagery (CGI) in a new NOVA documentary entitled, Secrets of the Parthenon.
The CGI footage licensed for the documentary was created by a team led by Dr. Paul Debevec, an internationally recognized computer scientist and inventor at USC's Institute for Creative Technologies (USC ICT).
The photorealistic Parthenon imagery was built from digital photography, lighting measurements, and three-dimensional laser scans captured in Athens, London, Paris, and Basel to accurately record the structure and appearance of the Parthenon and its sculptures. The final imagery realistically depicting the Parthenon as it stands today and also its appearance in the golden age of ancient Greece leveraged numerous USC ICT technological innovations in high dynamic range imaging, realistic lighting simulation, and surface reflectance measurement.
Produced by Providence Pictures, NOVA presents the first official restoration of one of the world's best known buildings. Secrets of the Parthenon reaches beyond the challenges and controversies of conserving an ancient structure to tell the story of restoration efforts of the temple originally constructed for Athena by the ancient Greeks.
The partnership with Providence Pictures further demonstrates USC's position as a leading university in digital entertainment technologies, and it further highlights the role that major research universities can play in helping society achieve maximum impact with new ideas.
Secrets of the Parthenon is scheduled to air January 29, 2008 from 8:00pm to 9:00pm on PBS.