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Steve Perlman’s motion-capture start-up Mova helped make possible the realistic animated faces in the new “The Incredible Hulk” film that debuted a week ago.

San Francisco-based Mova is owned by Perlman’s Rearden, a holding company that incubates a variety of Perlman-sponsored technology start-ups. Mova makes a tool that does a better job of capturing real faces and converting them into computer images than typical “motion capture” technologies. Perlman described Mova in a wide-ranging interview we did with him in April at the Web 2.0 conference.

With Mova’s “Contour Reality Capture” tool, technicians smear make-up on the faces of actors such as the Hulk star Edward Norton. The tool can capture each dot of the make-up as a data point that can be directly translated into a computer-generated image. Such images give artists a big head start in trying to create realistic animated faces based on real humans.

Perlman said that the Hulk film is the first movie credit that Mova has been allowed to reveal since the company announced its existence about 22 months ago. He said more films will be coming out soon.


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