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Junaid Baig — Head of Applied Technology, DNEG


While most five-year-olds were playing with Legos and Barbies, Junaid Baig was taking his first steps with 3D Max. From this early start, Junaid developed an incredibly in-depth understanding of 3D, lighting, and rendering from working on VFX for movies, including Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, Avengers: Endgame, and Venom.

Today, Junaid is head of applied technology at DNEG, where he’s helping pioneer virtual production on films and series including Masters of the Air. Junaid combines his knowledge and passion for technology with deep respect for artists, and he reveals how virtual production — and Chaos’ Project Arena — are changing the way crew and cast can work together to create new worlds for audiences to enjoy. 


Junaid VFX and Photography >

Junaid Baig on IMDb >

Junaid Baig on LinkedIn >

DNEG 360 >


0:03:55 Getting into 3D — at age 5

0:07:34 Pipelines and lighting

0:12:34 Discovering V-Ray

0:18:36 Understanding how ray tracing acceleration works

0:24:01 Rasterization and ray tracing

0:29:14 Why Junaid got into virtual production

0:34:22 The biggest challenges with in-camera VFX

0:38:55 The secret sauce of great VFX

0:41:41 "Pinocchio"

0:46:49 Getting everyone on the same page with "Masters of the Air"

0:52:09 What DNEG 360 is

0:56:28 What's more important: artists or technology?

0:58:49 Where virtual production is going next

1:03:28 How Project Arena changes everything

1:08:30 The importance of AI in high-quality virtual production

About the author

Christopher Nichols

Chris is a CG industry veteran and Director of Chaos Labs. He can also be heard regularly as the host of the CG Garage podcast which attracts 20,000 weekly listeners. With a background in both VFX and Design, Chris has worked for Gensler, Digital Domain, Imageworks and Method Studios. His credits include Maleficent, Oblivion and Tron: Legacy.

Originally published: May 20, 2024.
© Škoda Design

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