Central London Green Screen Studio for Hire

As chroma keying is used for large amounts of filming at The Camden Studio, we read with interest that Hobbit actor Ian McKellen cried with frustration about shooting scenes with a green screen instead of real actors. Richard Armitage, who plays dwarf leader Thorin Oakenshield in the movie did say that: “Everyone has a different reaction to working in peter’s digital playground, but I really enjoyed it.”

What is a Green Screen Studio?

A room fitted with a chroma key studio background can be used to superimpose one shot over another in post-production. From Wikipedia: “The special effects technique layers the two videostreams together based on colour hues (chroma range) to remove a background from the subject of a video. A colour range in the top layer is made transparent, revealing another image behind.”

The backgrounds have to be uniform and distinct, but otherwise any colour can be used. Chroma-keying is most commonly achieved with green or blue backgrounds, as they differ dramatically from most human skin pigments. No part of the subject being filmed can duplicate a colour used in the background, or this too would be superimposed over.

Why Use a Green Screen Studio?

Green screen studio

Sometimes the chroma key technique is used because it would be costly or impractical to shoot the actors or characters for real life in certain situations. For instance, the educational video That’s English! (pictured) was filmed at The Camden Studio, not actually looking over the Houses of Parliament!

A green screen is also sometimes used to equate fantastic looks that would be impossible to shoot on location. The space-themed video for 2003 Basement Jaxx single ‘Lucky Star’ featuring Dizzee Rascal fits that description, which was filmed here also. The video is below and uses chroma keying in part to shrink people, same as The Hobbit scenes that so annoyed Ian McKellan!

Director Peter Jackson eventually turned to low-fi techniques such as boxes, taller/shorter body doubles and ledges to appease the veteran actor. Should you require a green screen studio for your shoot however, affordable packages are always available at The Camden Studio.