A Splash of Mocha in Your Pipeline?
On X-Men, TRIXTER was used to replace Mystique's eyes. The sequence posed a number of challenges, least of which was to finish the work on time and on budget. First, Michael’s team had to track the eyes and the face to get the general movement. mocha's robust algorithm meant the tracking wasn’t easily distracted by small movements and variations in the pattern that differ from the overall movement. As Michael explained, “Blinks of the eyes were rarely a problem like they used to be when you tried to track a single feature in another software program. The first round of tracking helped to roto the eyes and place the new ones. The second round tackled the movement of the pupil. Reproducing all subtle movements of the original performance was key to a successful shot. This way we could preserve all the character's emotions even with her new set of eyes.”
Michael went on to say that mocha has changed the way TRIXTER tackles complex visual effects and stereo 3-D conversion projects. “On Journey 2, we had to do a lot of cleanup. An animal that was used on set for filming had to be removed here and there so that a new CG creature could be inserted. mocha was a big help by providing reliable tracks for patches and roto,” he explained. “mocha is an amazing tool that keeps getting better. We’re looking forward to new developments - features we know will benefit us even more, like a python api. This new feature will help us integrate pipelines and workflows even more effectively.”
Dan Sarto is publisher of VFXWorld.