How to import maya camera animation?

Hello, I am trying to figure out a pipeline to get maya camera animation in and out of unreal.
I have tried using matinee to create a camera move. When I “export all” from matinee as an fbx, the export seems fine (in maya), but upon re-importing the camera (as well as any animated objects) are in a different position, even if I have not done anything to it. From what I can find, this is a known bug that has yet to be fixed. If anyone knows a work around for this I would really like to know.
Alternatively, I tried to parent an unreal camera to an animated skeletal mesh. When I attach other objects or lights to the skeleton, they go along for the ride as expected. However when I attach a camera and have the viewport locked to the camera, it does not go along with the other parts and instead remains stationary. What am I doing wrong?
How do I attach the camera so it gets animated with skeleton?
I just started using Unreal about a week ago, and am so far loving it, but this last basic crucial step in the pipe is driving me nuts, can anyone help? Thanks in advance!

Hi Spectral Illusions -

The workaround currently is to switch the X and Y values in matinee for every key which should reset the camera to its original position / rotation. This is tedious, but it will work for you.

We are still currently working on the bug as well.

Thank You

Eric Ketchum

Hi Eric, Thanks for the reply. I hope Epic can get this bug fixed soon.
How about the second part of my question? I have an animated bone flying around my scene that I am able to attach objects, lights, and particles to, and they inherit the animation and fly around with the bone. However when I attach a camera created in unreal to it, lock the viewport to that camera, and hit play, the camera does not inherit the animation and just remains stationary while the other things continue to work. Is it possible to animate a camera in this fashion and if so what am I missing? Thanks!

Ok I was able to come up with a way to do this using the blueprint found here

Once that is setup, simply attach the camera to the animated skeleton and adjust. Now when I hit play the camera is attached to the animation and all is good. Not as straight forward as the fbx import would be in matinee, but until that is fixed this should do the trick

Hi Spectral Illusions -

Are you attaching the Camera to the Mesh in a Blueprint, and if so are you making the mesh the parent of the camera?

This will allow the movement of the mesh to control the movement of the camera.

Thank You

Eric Ketchum

I’m having similar issues, the thing that confuses me is I can create Camera Anim objects via Matinee, and I can Create Them Independently, and import fbx camera animation in to the asset, but I can’t use Camera Anim assets in matinee, and having all those keys in there, and swapping a couple of thousand keys between X and Y is not feasible.
Unless there is something I’m missing as far as a workflow where you can exchange tracks or copy paste them to a text file all at once.
What’s the eta on an expected fix ? 1 release 2 releases down the road etc… ?

Hi DCrosby -

We are in the process of completing overhauling the matinee system and Camera Anims are merely the first part of this overhaul process. There will be some hiccups along the way, but we feel you will be pleased ultimately with the final result. Currently Sequencer (the Matinee follow-up) is on our Roadmap for development this summer. I would expect to hear more information closer to August and September.

Thank You

Eric Ketchum

Hi DCrosby -

So After some testing, you can use the Camera Anim’s in place of Matinees as a means of controlling your player’s camera manager through your player controller. So in blueprint you add a player controller and a player camera manager and in your player controller you can Play Camera Anim and it will take your Player’s Camera and run the aforementioned Anim.

Camera Anim’s can be setup just like a Matinee but exist in the Content Browser as opposed to the Level Map.

Now the downside, currently the importing of an existing FBX camera animation from Max or Maya is bugged and will not save in the Camera Anim animation track. I entered this bug today and will keep everyone informed as soon as it is fixed.

Thank You

Eric Ketchum

Any news about this bug? Its easier for us to work the animation of cameras in Maya/Max and then imported to ue4, this looks like a simple bug for a big software, i cant belive its not fixed yet :confused:

Hi Aguilart,

This feature is on our Roadmap for Sequencer, however it isn’t high priority because of many of the new camera tools available with Sequencer.

-Matt W.

This would be a HUGE asset to my company. I am very surprised such a bug exists. Simple FBX camera animation imports don’t seem like a massive challenge considering what UE4 can do as a package. Correct me if I’m wrong, but after research, this seems like a much desired feature.

Hey Jordan, you can do this now. Create a camera and add it to sequencer, then right click the track in sequencer, then select import.

Hi Matt,
We are actually still having trouble with this implementation. The camera appears to follow the correct animation when you drag the sequencer timeline. Although, we are doing a VR setup. So when I set the camera to automatically take player0 and push play. Both the VR preview as well as the window Preview both remain static.

Please create a new thread as this is an entirely separate issue. We try not to investigate more than one issue per thread.

The answer is here: Pluralsight - Animating a Short Film in Maya and Unreal Engine - 02 13 Exporting Camera Animation from Maya to Unreal.
It works 1000%. One thing: new camera should be THE NEW!
Just copy and paste your parameters (Focal Length, Camera Aperture and etc.) Good luck :slight_smile:

1 Like

Hi guys, I’m facing a relatively similar issue, hope guys can help.

I imported baked animated cameras from Maya 2017 to Unreal 4.17.2 with Translate, Rotate, Focal distance and focal length animation. When I import the camera to the sequencer, I can see all the animated keys in all my channels but apart from Focal Distance and Distortion. I have tried to go back in forth with Maya and Unreal to find anything I must have missed, but I cant get unreal to read the Focus distance from the imported camera.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Best
Pratik