A Creepy Let Me In
Matt Reeves' Let Me In (the Americanized reworking of the Swedish vampire film, Let The Right One In) is so deliberate in the way it's crafted that the vfx needed to be complementary to this tender yet horrific allegory about adolescent angst.
"Matt had a strong desire that this film not feel smaller than the original," suggests Brad Parker, the overall visual effects supervisor. "At the same time, he didn't want to overdo anything with ridiculous over-the-top visual effects. The vast majority -- and there are well over 150 shots -- are transparent."
However, it was the spectacular car chase that got Parker involved in the project, having overseen the climactic car chase in We Own the Night. "James Gray, the director of We Own the Night, is a friend and he talked to Matt about his car chase sequence, so that's how I came to work with Matt, and it was the first shot that we ever discussed," Parker continues. "He wanted it to be very first-person in the car with him as he crashed. He didn't know how he wanted to do it or how it was going to look, so we went through a quick development process, prevising out the sequence with an amazing supervisor, Casey Schatz [simulcam supervisor on Avatar, now at Giant Studios], who prevised all of the Let Me In sequences by himself. Once we had a sequence that Matt was happy with in terms of impact, it was my task to actually figure out how to do it.
Indeed, Faden, Method's visual effects supervisor, admits it was one of the most challenging shots, which required their compositors to combine two plates of what would total a 1,110 frame shot. "The tasks here were threefold," Faden explains: "First we had to create a realistic environment outside the car; second we needed to create an animation that would blend with the first part of the shot and tumble down the digital hill in sync with the natural motion of the rotisserie, adding large bounces where appropriate and traveling the proper distance; third, the marrying of the two plates required that we blend not only the actor and stunt man but also the details of the two Impalas.