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Mistika Powers AFA Winner 'Flying Swords of Dragon Gate'

SGO's Mistika was used for the stereoscopic 3D post production work for China's first 3D IMAX martial arts action film “The Flying Swords of Dragon Gate,” which won Best Visual Effects and Best Costume Designer at the Asian Film Awards.

Press release from SGO:

Beijing, China SGO's Mistika was used for all the stereoscopic 3D post production work for China's first 3D IMAX martial arts action film The Flying Swords of Dragon Gate. The film triumphed at the Asian Film Awards (AFA) by winning Best Visual Effects (Wook Kim, Josh Cole and Frankie Chung) and Best Costume Designer (Yee Chung Man and Lai Hsuan-Wu) and was nominated for best film, best director, best actor, best supporting actress and the best production designer.

The Asian Film Awards (AFA) is an international pioneering programme that honours film-makers with outstanding achievements in the field of Asian cinema and is the only platform in the world that draws the best cinematic talents in Asia. Director Tsui Hark also received impressive accolades at the 31st Hong Kong Film Awards for best action choreography, art direction, editing, visual effects and sound effects categories for the 560 million Yuan ($89 million) gross blockbuster.

Post Production company Dimension Plus selected Mistika as system of choice for the mega-hit movie. With facilities in Shanghai and Beijing, Dimension Plus is a leading stereoscopic 3D pioneer and fast becoming a company well-known for using innovative technology, associated with big-budget and key industry film projects, and is one of China's most prestigious post production specialists.

Filmed in Stereo 3D, production commenced back in October 2010 in Beijing with cinematographers Parkie Chan and Sung Fai Choi. Director Tsui Hark also invited Chuck Comiskey, visual-effects supervisor for James Cameron's Avatar, as Stereo 3D Director to help with special effects management. Comiskey trained a team of 3D crew from China, Korea, Singapore and Spain for the mammoth project. With a $35 million budget, the Hong Kong-Chinese Wuxia film, features martial arts legend Jet Li, who was keen to be a part of the film and eager to see how the latest Stereo 3D technology would inject a new lease of life into the film industry in China.

Chen Pei-Yu, Mistika Operator working with the team at Dimension Plus explains: “Mistika played an important role in the post production of the film. We used the system for a host of functions which included key enhancements, adjustments, “smoothing out” stereo effects, alignments, re-timing and optical motion blurs. The system's powerful RGB colour corrector could easily select and generate the alpha channel and Mistika's Optical Flow tool, helped us to achieve an excellent colour match, and in real-time as well. We also made the 3D subtitles and captions using Mistika.”

Chen Pei-Yu expands: “The most exciting thing about Mistika is that you can combine its powerful tools in every creative way you can imagine. We really enjoyed the amazing creativity Mistika delivered which gave us so many different and exciting combinations to work with.” Chen also found Mistika's timeline-based structure very helpful with maintaining continuity and consistency throughout the project. Mistika's layer tools efficiently managed the various VFX shots by maintaining different versions and displaying differences between each design.

Chen concludes: “SGO's Mistika really helped us tremendously, especially with regards to high quality control, which was vital for a project of this magnitude.”

Visually stunning, the film was recently released in China in Mandarin and is a Stereo 3D sequel of Dragon Gate Inn (1966). The film portrays a Ming Dynasty General fighting against a power-hungry eunuch with their final battle held at an inn run by Zhou Xun. For further information about the film, please visit the official film website at

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Jennifer Wolfe is Director of News & Content at Animation World Network.