The Holy Grail of visual effects in film is to create and animate digital human faces indistinguishable from reality. The reason why human faces are so notoriously difficult to model lies in the Uncanny Valley effect. Even the tiniest imperfection in a digital facial model or animation triggers an alert function in our brain and induces a feeling of alienation. This is exactly what we all experience when looking at digital characters in early films or computer games. For stylized and non-human faces, this effect is far less important – a phenomenon used heavily in the computer-animated film industry.
The design and development of characters that convey emotional depth and bond with us are one of the major research efforts of DisneyResearch|Studios. Markus Gross will give insight into the fundamental challenges and opportunities for creating digital humans. He estimates that – with the help of artificial intelligence – it won’t take another decade until they become indistinguishable.
Markus Gross is vice president Research of The Walt Disney Studios and the director of the DisneyResearch|Studios lab. He is a professor of Computer Science at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETH), where he is also the head of the Computer Graphics Laboratory. Before joining Disney, Markus Gross was director of the Institute of Computational Sciences at ETH. His research interests include physically-based modeling, computer animation, immersive displays, and video technology. The Academy Award-winning computer scientist also serves on the boards of numerous international research institutes, societies, and governmental organizations.
September 18th, 2020, 12:30 pm
Cinema Toni (3.G02 Level 3)