VFX Fall Preview 2010: 10 Movies to Watch
Rob Letterman (Monsters vs. Aliens) re-imagines the 18th century Jonathan Swift tale as a contemporary satire, with Jack Black as a free-spirited travel writer who gets more than he bargained for during a trip to the Bermuda Triangle that washes him ashore to Lilliput. Helping out with water and miniature people and other vfx/animation wonders (under the overall vfx supervision of Jim Rygiel and Ellen Somers) are Weta Digital, Scanline VFX, Geon Studios, Hydraulx, Nvizage, Pixel Playground and others.
Clint Eastwood tackles a love story set around death and the vision of the hereafter, in which a psychic (Matt Damon) talks to the dead and catches glimpses of the afterlife; a TV talk show host (Cecille de France) has a near death experience during a tsunami; and a young boy witnesses the death of his twin brother. Scanline VFX collaborated closely with Eastwood and Michael Owens, the overall vfx supervisor. Led by co-VFX Supervisors Stephan Trojansky and Bryan Grill, CG Supervisor Danielle Plantec and Compositing Supervisor Joe Farrell, Scanline provided 169 shots. Given Scanline's expertise with water simulation, it's not surprising that the key sequence was the recreation of the tsunami, which drew upon a wide array of techniques: full CG water shots and CG water extensions to water plates, digital doubles, CG set extensions, matte paintings, digital make-up fx and full CG environments with extensive destruction, from toppling digital palm trees to colliding digital cars. Also central to the film is the "hereafter" effect' sprinkled throughout, which, gives the viewer glimpses into the afterlife. The water evidently raises the bar for Scanline after the stunning work in 2012. And drawing from Close Encounters of the Third Kind to Ghost, Owens, Compositing Supervisor Joe Farrell and Editor Mitch Glaser created progressions from consciousness, to near-death, then back again.
Michael Apted directs the third Narnia movie (the first in 3-D) from C.S. Lewis' popular books. The heroes join Caspian on a sea adventure that involves dragons, dwarfs, merfolk, a band of lost warriors and a reunion with Aslan. Angus Bickerton is overall vfx supervisor with work divided among MPC, The Senate, Framestore, Cinesite, The Mill and others.