Bert the Fish
is a 3D virtual puppet by Canal Plus Media Lab
for Nickelodeon TV.
Comment submitted by bob
BC: Bert was a virtual 3d puppet controlled by puppeteers using datagloves and position-sensing systems, generated in realtime on a silicon graphics machine,
Bob Cotton adds: I first saw Bert in action when I was doing some consultancy work with Nickelodeon - they had a temporary 'open-access' studio at the Trocadero in London's Picadilly Circus. The Canal Plus media-lab ream had set up a state of the Art SG machine (was it an an Onyx then?) that was driving the animation and realtime rendering of Bert. His motion was controlled by a puppeteer with a data-glove. Another actor provided his mouth movements and voice-over. Bert was then matted live into the studio scene with a human presenter. Bert would swim around the presenter and his guests, 'talking' to him and taking the mickey out of guests. Canal Plus media-lab were really hot on 3d modelling and realtime-animation then. They went on to do 'Deuxieme Monde' - a virtual Paris - for Canal Plus.