Montreal and London studios create iridescent weaponized gas that descends on James Bond as he’s caught in a beam of light surrounded by party goers in the hit MGM thriller.
Leading creative studio Cinesite has just shared some of their visual effects work on MGM’s hit thriller, No Time to Die, the 25th installment in the James Bond film franchise and the company’s 9th time delivering VFX for the storied series going back to 1995’s GoldenEye. The VFX work was shared between the studio’s London and Montreal facilities, with London leading the project.
The main body of work involved the creation of a weaponized gas, glimpsed briefly in the domestic trailer for the film. At a Spectre venue in Cuba, Bond and CIA agent Paloma attend a party, not realizing they are walking into a trap. In a sequence of arresting shots, Bond is surrounded by a circle of party goers when he is caught in the beam of a spotlight as the strangely iridescent and beautiful gas descends upon the socializing crowd. A glimpse of the sequences appears in the final US trailer for the movie.
The production VFX supervisor was Charlie Noble, with Framestore supervisor Jonathan Fawkner directly overseeing Cinesite’s work. The production VFX producer was Mara Bryan.
“Mist had been generated on set for a few of the shots, which we needed to match as closely as possible,” explained Cinesite VFX supervisor Salvador Zalvidea. “Getting the iridescent quality right was very important, the way light is separated into a rainbow spectrum. Our technical approach was to devise a system where we added the look entirely at the compositing stage, without having to render simulations, which would have been render-heavy and complicated. The end result is seamless and incidental to the action. That’s always our aim for the visual effects in Bond films, to enhance but never to distract the audience from the action.”
In the same sequence, Cinesite’s visual effects team created other subtle effects, like compositing environments, disseminating Spectre logos throughout.
The VFX studio contributed other invisible visual effects in various environments including an underwater action sequence and a challenging “long shot.” The latter required the creation of an epic 2-minute-long single shot of Bond chasing down bad guys in a gun battle, up a staircase and through a building. The shot, filmed in several separate passes, had to be stitched together with seamless transitions. The VFX team also added muzzle flashes, blood hits, CG fire, smoke and CG environments for some areas of shots filmed against greenscreen.