Broadway Romero: The Man Behind The ODB/Eazy E Virtual Performances

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    AV Concepts - Guerilla Union - Young Dirty Bastard

    In a story published last week, Guerilla Union head Chang Weisman (pictured above, upper center right) had finally reached an agreement with the families of both Ol’ Dirty Bastard and Eazy-E to endorse virtual performances from the dead hip hop icons at this year’s upcoming Rock The Bells festival.

    Now, GiantLife has been given the opportunity to talk to Chris “Broadway” Romero (pictured above, center left), the man who, as the VP of production at Play Gig-It, was integral to the entire production and design of both holograms for the upcoming festival starting in September in Los Angeles.

    When asked about the production process and what inspirations Romero took to heart, he made it very clear that he spared no expense in his creative process:

    From getting real references like the actual clothing they wore or to be in the real rooms that they inhabited or studios they worked out of for me brings an intangible energy that goes back into the art process of bringing them back to life for a real audience.  I channel this energy back into the production end of it, both from an on-set perspective, and an in the lab perspective.  I use combinations of real video shoots, motion capture, performance capture, face performance capture, and dozens of layers of post production using the latest in 3D animation and visual FX technology to create the illusion of life.

    Watch video of Romero’s work here: 

    Romero also had much to say about working closely with the families of both rappers, including ODB’s mother Cherry Jones and his son Young Dirty Bastard, and Eazy-E’s  widow Tomica Wright and children Eric, Erin, and Derick Wright. 

    Both families have been amazing to work with thus far…It’s been all 100% positive as both of these families understand the power of the likeness, and are approaching it very seriously… My job as a director, digital artist and technician is to find ways to literally let the DNA of these legends drive the digital DNA in the form of our tools, techniques, and technology to truly create a memorable performance for the stage.  How they walk, how they move, how they sound must all feel like THEM, and by working with the children we are achieving that goal.  It’s something we do every day here in building the best in celebrity avatars at 212 DB / Play GIG-IT, and I’m super excited to see how it all comes together on a real stage at Rock the Bells!!

    Rock The Bells begins on September 7th in Los Angeles, CA before moving to San Francisco on Sept. 14th, Washington D.C. on the 26th, and New York on October 4th. Make sure to check out the site to stay updated and keep an eye out for ODB and Eazy-E at the festival when it comes to your town!

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