Zack Snyder&s new zombie blockbuster Army of the Dead with Matthias Schweighöfer has just been launched on Netflix and has already terrified many viewers - not because of its zombie hordes, however, but because they suddenly discovered conspicuous dead pixels while watching on their TV.
But the all-clear came quickly: in online forums such as Reddit, more and more users reported noticing dead pixels in the HDR version of the 90 million dollar production "Army of The Dead", moreover, the dead pixels were there in some scenes, but not in others. They could probably only be noticed at all because the individual white pixels - in some scenes up to three at a time - are quite conspicuous in front of dark film backgrounds and placed in the middle of the picture (and the TVs of many viewers are getting bigger and bigger or are even projected several meters high in home theaters). For fun, it has already been renamed "Army of The Dead Pixel" because of this.
;Zack Snyder during the shooting of "Army of The Dead". But it quickly became clear that it had to be a problem with at least one of the cameras used (vintage Canon optics equipped RED Monstro 8K), i.e. defective pixels on the camera sensor (or sensel).
Dead or Hot Pixel?
More precisely, they are probably "hot pixels", i.e. pixels which output wrong values when the camera (and so the sensor) gets too hot and high ISO is set, which would also explain that the pixels appear only in some scenes (apart from using other cameras)- dead pixels would also not be white but black. Hot pixels occur so frequently on all sorts of cameras that Netflix even has a guide for its production teams to detect and remove them.
. Netflix defines erroneous pixels as pixels that are in focus of the scene and appear bright against a dark background.
To prevent such "pixel error," Netflix recommends performing a daily black shading calibration, a calibration mechanism based on camera sensor exposure time and temperature. It resets the noise pattern and reduces pixel errors and should be performed when the environment or temperature changes.
In addition, Netflix advises pixel checking, which means with the lens on, the camera should be pointed at the illuminated white surface, causing the photocells to electrify, then the shot should be started and changed to a black surface or the exposure on the lens should be closed completely - after which the image should be analyzed for faulty pixels.
Since especially high-contrast elements often show problems, darker scenes with camera movement should be checked especially carefully - faulty pixels remain bright and fixed in position. Otherwise, Netflix recommends removing faulty pixels in post-production via VFX.
How could such pixel errors not be noticed?
Gerätselt becomes in view of such an official guide against faulty pixels still, how such a conspicuous error could occur nevertheless and above all not be noticed by the quality assurance of the film team in the postproduction and/or from Netflix to the screen of the users. Attentive users discovered similar hot pixel problems (in the same places) in other Netflix productions such as ""Shadow and Bone", "Extraction" and "The Irregulars", which would suggest that a specific camera from the Netflix camera pool has this recurring problem.
Rather unlikely is the possibility that the dead pixels were even intentionally left in the film by perfectionist Zack Snyder. For RED, which boasts Zack Snyder&s film, the "Army of Dead Pixels" could become a PR problem for Netflix as well, since the issue is getting a fair amount of attention and now both RED cameras and Netflix are associated with the embarrassing dead pixels. more infos at bei www.netflix.com