Anyone who saw the trailer for full trailer for Andor a few days ago will have noticed that the whole thing just felt a bit… bigger? There is a reason for this. The creative team behind the show made a key decision early on and have decided not to use StageCraft technology, what has come to be known as “The Volume”.

The-Volume

First conceived by Jon Favreau’s production of The Jungle Book, the ILM existing StageCraft set at Manhattan Beach Studios really came to the fore during the making of The Mandalorian. It uses vast LED high-definition screens to create virtual sets and accurate light conditions without the need for extensive location shoots or set construction.

A second StageCraft set has since been built at Manhattan Beach, with a third at Pinewood Studios in London and a fourth at Fox Studios Australia. When it is used well, you get The Mandalorian and fifteen Emmy nominations including best VFX. When it is used badly, you get the bunker attack scene in Obi-Wan Kenobi.

Volume
“Why are we all so bunched up and have such limited movement?”

Using the tech can seriously supercharge production schedules, but it is not for everyone, including Andor. Showrunner Tony Gilroy told The Hollywood Reporter why they decided against it:

“The technology is extraordinary, and it’s going to become a larger and larger force in filmmaking. Nobody’s against the volume, the volume is fantastic for the things that it’s for. Our show was just on a massively epic scale, and people would be running off the set all the time.

Right now, there’s no good way to do both. You have to make a decision to be a volume show or a non-volume show. You can’t jump back and forth. There are some things that we wish we could have done on volume, they might have been simpler. But our show is huge. We have 211 speaking parts. It just didn’t lend itself to that kind of production.”

Kathleen Kennedy, Sanne Wohlenberg, Diego Luna and Michelle Rejwan are the executive producers for this go around in the decidedly mixed Star Wars universe.

The-Volume

The twelve-episode series will launch with a three-episode premiere on September 21st on Disney+.

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