The Shallows Visual Effects Breakdown

While blockbusters tend to throw visual effects in your face, the best use of the advanced technology we have to create computer generated imagery is used to enhance what was shot on set. The hardest thing to do is use extensive visual effects that fill in for reality, but when it comes to recreating an isolated ocean cove and a deadly shark patrolling the waters, two visual effects houses did an incredible job.

The Shallows follows Blake Lively as she ends up stranded on small set of rocks 200 yards from the nearest shore. Keeping her from swimming back to safety is one ferocious shark, and you might be surprised to see just how impressive the visual effects are that created the shark from scratch, as well as most of the ocean environment surrounding the terror.

Watch The Shallows visual effects breakdowns after the jump. Read More »

La La Land Featurette

Last weekend, La La Land won all of the Golden Globes it was nominated for, setting a new record for the most Golden Globes won by a single film with seven trophies taken home. There’s a good chance that the movie, including stars Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone, will get plenty of Oscar nominations when they’re announced on January 24th too.

In the meantime, more and more people are seeing the musical now that it’s in wide release across the country. That means there’s no better time for a new La La Land featurette to show how director Damien Chazelle blended his love for classic musicals from decades ago with a contemporary romance set in the heart of Los Angeles.

Watch the La La Land featurette after the jump. Read More »

Rogue One - Grand Moff Tarkin Visual Effects

Now that Rogue One: A Star Wars Story has been in theaters for a few weeks, Disney, Lucasfilm and the crew behind the sci-fi saga spin-off are starting to reveal some of the secrets behind the making of the movie. Just recently the film’s editors discussed the reshoots and a unique pre-production process, and now a story from Nightline reveals one of the most simultaneously impressive and unsettling elements of Rogue One.

Rogue One features the Star Wars: A New Hope character of Grand Moff Tarkin in a key supporting role as an adversary of sorts to Director Orson Krennic (Ben Mendelsohn). However, rather than having another actor simply play the part on-screen, Lucasfilm decided to have actor Guy Henry create a motion-capture performance where digital effects were used to essentially bring the late actor Peter Cushing back to life in the role he famously played back in 1977. Many have wondered just how this was achieved, and now a report from Nightline takes a dive into the process of how it was achieved. Read More »

Arrival Visual Effects

Sometimes when it comes to visual effects, less is more. In the case of the acclaimed sci-fi hit Arrival, there’s not a mess of blockbuster spectacle that needed to be done in order to bring the arrival of these unique aliens to life. While there are aliens created with visual effects, there aren’t any cities that need to be intricately blown up in post-production or anything like that.

If you’d like to see some of the visual effects work that went into Arrival, a breakdown from Oblique FX has been made available online, showing how they manipulated footage that was shot on location to make it look like one of the sites where the unidentified flying objects is located. It should come as no surprise to see that the giant, pebble shaped ships were created in post-production, but you might be surprised by what is real and what isn’t.

Watch the Arrival visual effects breakdown after the jump. Read More »

Stranger Things Monster Effects

Now that it’s 2017, new episodes of Stranger Things feel much closer. The first season debuted last summer, and fans are expecting the second season to arrive on Netflix around the same time this year, though no official release date has been set just yet. In the meantime, how about we take a closer look at how the signature monster known as the Demogorgon was brought to life for the show?

Mark Steger helped brig the Demogorgon to life by being the man standing on stilts inside of a creature suit, and now some new behind the scenes photos and a video reveals the body suit and mechanical head that will haunt your nightmares, even when it’s not creeping in the dark.

See how the Stranger Things monster effects came together after the jump. Read More »

Batman v Superman Visual Effects

Even though Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice was one of the most hotly debated movies of 2016, I think we can all agree that there is some outstanding visual effects work in the movie. Not every visual effect is perfect, but I’m betting that when you see the recently release Batman v Superman visual effects breakdown that you’ll be surprised to see just how much of certain sequences was actually created in post-production. Read More »

Saturday Night Live

When people watch Saturday Night Live, I don’t think many of them realize just how small of a space Studio 8H actually is in 30 Rockefeller Plaza. There’s only so much room for the various sets created for SNL that some of them are put up and taken down in just a few minutes, either during the opening credits or over commercial breaks. And now you get to see how they do it.

The cold open from this past weekend’s SNL with host Casey Affleck (which wasn’t a great episode overall) started off in the office of Donald Trump (Alec Baldwin) as he met with Vladmir Putin (Beck Bennet) and Rex Tillerson (John Goodman). That set actually sat right on the mainstage where the monologue happens during every episode, in front of the SNL band, and the crew tore it down in less than two minutes.

Watch the Saturday Night Live set change video after the jump. Read More »

Rogue One Featurette

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is all the rage right now. Even the fans who weren’t as crazy about it as others can’t stop talking about it. Whether it’s looking at the footage that was left on the cutting room floor as a casualty of the reshoots or all the easter eggs in there referencing other parts of the Star Wars universe, Rogue One is a hot topic for discussion.

Since the movie has barely been out for a week as of this evening, we’re still treading carefully when it comes to spoilers. But worry not, because this new Rogue One featurette contains nothing that will ruin the movie for you, as it goes behind the scenes of the real locations that are used for planets like Scarif, Jedha and more. Read More »

Tv and Computer Screens in Movies - Steve Jobs

While there is plenty of fascination from cinephiles regarding the creation of visual effects for movies and television, there are plenty of jobs on a movie set that go unnoticed. One such job is that of a computer/video playback supervisor.

If that doesn’t sound all that interesting, a new video profile explains the fascinating and surprisingly meticulous work that goes into something as simple as a television playing in the background of a scene in the 1980s set movie Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, or something as complex as a faux piece of software used in a key sequence of a movie like Date Night, or recreating the software of one of the first Macintosh computers so that it actually works on camera for Steve Jobs.

Watch the video about how TV and computer screens in movies are created after the jump. Read More »

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T2 Trainspotting 2 Featurette - Ewan McGregor

Even the most die hard fans of Danny Boyle‘s cult classic drug-fueled drama Trainspotting are skeptical about whether or not the filmmaker can craft a worthy follow-up to the beloved movie. The teaser trailer does provide hope though as even the visuals perfectly capture the vibe of the original movie, promising a thematic sequel as much as a narrative one.

Now we get a little more information about what we can expect from one of the returning characters from the original movie as a new T2 Trainspotting featurette focuses on Ewan McGregor as Renton, who no longer rides the H-train, but has found a new addiction in its place. Watch the new video below. Read More »