David Attenborough is no stranger to innovation in the media. “I remember when I was only one of three people who could see colour TV,” the 91-year-old says. So when he was placed inside a 106-camera rig at Microsoft’s Seattle headquarters, it was nothing out of the ordinary. The purpose? To create a hologram version of Attenborough.
Using volumetric scanning – where multiple video feeds are compressed to create a 3D object – the presenter has been ported into virtual reality. Before Attenborough was flown out to the US, members of the production team collected some of his familiar blue shirts and wore them in front of the cameras to test the light setup. “It’s quite weird,” he says.