Alternative Rock Band 30 Seconds to Mars wowed the audience at the 34th Annual MTV Video Music Awards on Sunday at The Forum in Inglewood, CA. With MTV’s “Brace for History” motto, MoviTHERM helped shape that message by being part of the first ever thermal video broadcast.

Lead singer Jared Leto started teasing viewers about their upcoming live performance in the MTV VMA award show in this interview with The Insider Magazine. Fans were kept in suspense, as he only vaguely hinted on what was to come.


Walk on Water by 30 Seconds to Mars, live at the MTV VMA 2017

The above are still shots from the live thermal video below. From left to right: Jay Leto, Tomo – Travis Scott – Jared Leto, Choir & Dancers.


A few weeks prior to the MTV VMAs, MoviTHERM was approached by the band’s production company interested in using several FLIR HD Thermal Cameras. MoviTHERM assembled a team of thermal imaging engineers and started working with the creative production team, choreographers, dancers, choir and band to create some mesmerizing thermal video that was sure to capture the audience’s attention.

“This was history in the making, commented Vatche Arabian, Senior Director of Strategic Communications at FLIR. This was the first time ever that four FLIR HD Thermal Cameras had been used in a live, world-wide TV broadcast!”

“We utilized two FLIR A8300sc and two FLIR SC8300 HD thermal cameras with HD-SDI outputs, suitable for broadcasting in 720p” , added Markus Tarin, President & CEO at MoviTHERM. When it became apparent that temperature span adjustments had to be made on-the-fly during live broadcast, we decided to develop special thermal imaging and camera control software to accommodate that task. The software enabled us to optimize the thermal contrast of the performers in real-time during the live performance and respond rapidly to cues of the video director. The MoviTHERM software was a critically important asset to making this a glaring success for Thirty Seconds to Mars, the MTV VMA show, FLIR as well as MoviTHERM.

After the MTV VMA performance aired, social media was lighting up with headlines like these:

Billboard Magazine
Thirty Seconds to Mars Gives ‘Walk on Water’ Its Live Debut With Mind-Bending Performance at 2017 VMAs”

“30 Seconds To Mars Go Full-Throttle Thermal Tech With Glowing 2017 VMAs Performance”

Hollywood Life
“30 Seconds To Mars Rocks Infrared Performance Of ‘Walk On Water’ With Travis Scott At VMAs”

FLIR Systems, Inc
Thirty Seconds to Mars Uses FLIR Thermal Cameras in MTV Video Music Awards

Behind the Scene Interview from the MTV VMA

For a behind the scene interview with FLIR and MoviTHERM, check out the video below. This video provides a small behind the scene view at the MTV VMA show, right before the band goes on stage.