The virtual set that became home to BBC Sports Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics coverage, was an evolutionary extension of the in-house studio designs we had prepared for them in early 2021 - BBC Sport Virtual Set. Taking the main presenting space from that design, we updated the interior detailing, and replaced the photographic exteriors with a fully realised, 3D environment. This new exterior featured a ski resort design, complete with external deck areas, landscaping, forests, ski runs, and lots of snow.

The deck areas provided a range of new presentation positions and allowed new positions within the landscape to be added by the BBC as the games progressed. By the closing ceremony, a total of eight presenting positions were being used. All were shot within the modest footprint of the existing greenscreen studio in Salford.

The virtual set mirrored the time of day in Beijing, through the use of different lighting and sky set ups corresponding to day, dusk and night. Additionally, the design featured a bar entrance, above which we placed a neon sign that could be switched to display the name of the current on-screen presenter.

This design proved to be another highly successful collaboration with BK Design projects, and was built entirely by Lightwell, using Epic Games Unreal Engine, and powered by VizRT’s Viz 4.

Behind the scenes image of the BBC Sport virtual studio.

Client: BBC Sport
Design: Lightwell + BK Design Projects
Unreal Set Build: Lightwell



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