Bluman backs Nokia in Times Square takeover

Mission Media recently joined forces with Bluman Associates to produce a complex AV presentation in Times Square to launch a new Nokia phone. The event featured a performance from Nicki Minaj against a backdrop of a 200ft (approximately 60m) LED wall.

The American Eagle LED tower in Times Square was used to create a hero screen for the centre of the event and content was designed to move in time with the song. Other screens around the square were taken over to relay camera feeds from the live event as well as brand messages for the launch. High resolution CGI content was created for the screen by UK production company Glassworks.

Bluman planned a series of media servers, switchers and controllers to enable the show to be vision mixed live on site and to capture the excitement of the crowd on the big screens.

This included eight Hippotizer V3 HD media servers which were all running dual in dual mode with full redundancy from DVI switchers and programmed using a Road Hog Full Boar. The large variety of different sizes and formats of screens in Times Square meant that Bluman had to specify different formats for the content production and manage the distribution of the content using a Christie Spyder to create realtime visualisation as content was played. Live feeds were also coming in from an OB truck which had to be manipulated and framed appropriately for the screens instantly.

Prior to the event, Bluman liased with eight vendors to arrange the technical and logistical details of handling feeds. Bluman met with each to analyse their technical capabilities and organise times to test content, which tended to be between 2-3am to not disrupt the planned advertising schedule.

Pod Bluman, managing director of Bluman Associates, explains: "In addition to a complicated media streaming system, we had to run fibre optic cable to all the screens covering four blocks in Times Square. This was a highly time pressured installation in one of the most densely populated and highly visited areas in the world. We have lots of experience of working in complicated multi-agency environments and delivering technically complex solutions that involve a high level of collaboration and negotiation, so this was the perfect job in our eyes."