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How Star Trek created visual effects history

Published on July 28, 2016, by in VFX.

Star Trek remains one of the most popular television & movie franchise till date. Generations have grown up watching this intergalactic science fiction. Besides the story, performances, and iconic characters, its popularity is largely due to its mind-blowing special effects. In fact, it would not be wrong to say that Star Trek created visual effects history. With the release of Star Trek Beyond this week, we thought of taking a look at how this popular series created VFX history in #ThrowbackThursday. Source: Paramount Pictures Models & glitter It goes without saying that the 1960s was not very technologically advanced. However, that did not stop writers & production studios from imagining big. Even at this point there were ideas of special effects. But this was the period of miniatures, matte paintings on glass & optical compositing on real film. And it all began with Star Trek: The Original Series. The number

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VFX of The Walk

Published on November 18, 2015, by in VFX.

Robert Zemeckis’ The Walk was a biography of French high-wire artist Philippe Petit, and was based on the high-wire walk between Twin Towers of the World Trade Centre on August 7, 1974. Starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, highlight of the film was the believable recreation of the historic walk. Gordon-Levitt trained under Petit, and shot for the climactic wire-walking scenes on a soundstage. But the real magic happened behind the scenes when Atomic Fiction, led by visual effects supervisor Kevin Baillie reproduced the final walk for the film. Besides Gordon-Levitt’s training, the VFX process involved lengthy previs, a green screen studio in Montreal, simulcam setups, stunt doubles, face replacements, meticulous replication of 1974 New York and the Towers, innovative cloud rendering, and some neat compositing. High-wire planning The team was sure that they had to create a set of the rooftop of the World Trade Center Towers and the rest would be

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Top 14 VFX use in films of 2014

Published on December 12, 2014, by in VFX.

VFX, sound effects & technological enhancements have become an integral part of film making. With every passing success, directors are becoming more bold & experimental in using these techniques to bring their imagination to screen. As the year comes to a close, we take a look at 2014’s best VFX use in both Hollywood & Bollywood. Captain America: The Winter Soldier The movie starts from where The Avengers ended. Captain America teams up with other agents of S.H.I.E.L.D to uncover a series of plots & conspiracies to fight the enemies. And the VFX team lived up to the expectations. The movie used more than 2500 VFX shots. This work was broken down between a host of VFX houses such as ILM, Scanline, Trixter, Rise & Luma. Digital doubles were also used in order to build detailed images. Photo shoots & digital scans were done with the lead actors in full

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Movies that led to the creation of new techniques in the special effects industry

Published on November 28, 2014, by in Graphics, VFX.

Movies have always tested the limits of technology and pushed boundaries to discover new technologies. Every year, big production houses pour in millions of dollars to explore the latest developments that technology has to offer, especially in the field of animation and VFX. But some of these movies not only explore new techniques, they bring about a paradigm shift in the way special effects are handled in the industry on the whole. This brings about a buzz of activity in the industry as the new technology is refined by subsequent production teams and is finally brought into the mainstream. In this post, we celebrate five such movies that have single-handedly brought about a change in the special effects industry. Tron: Legacy Even though the new CGI technology was used only during the first twenty minutes, Tron was one of the first movies ever to make use of digital animation with

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Top advertising campaigns that used animation & VFX in India

Published on November 7, 2014, by in Animation, VFX.

Technology has been a boon to mankind. It has helped in many facets of life; be it communication, science or civil. One such area that is benefitting the most from technological advancements is none other than the advertising industry. With the development of animation & VFX technologies; television commercials in India are utilising it to deliver the message and advertise to the maximum capacity. Let’s take a look at the top five television commercials in India, which have used the combination of animation and VFX effectively. Vodafone ZooZoo Campaign Source: Vadafone ZooZoo The ZooZoos took the nation by storm when they were launched in 2009 by Vodafone. The Vodafone ZooZoo campaign is one of the most successful commercial campaigns in Indian television history. Contrary to popular belief, the ZooZoos were not animated characters. They were real humans wearing costumes. So what’s unique about these ads? Although special suits were made

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Lucrative life in animation and VFX industry

Published on November 5, 2014, by in Animation, Gaming, VFX.

Animation is bringing inanimate objects and images to life for the purpose of providing wholesome entertainment. The global animation and VFX industry is estimated to reach 55.9 billion by 2015*. This means that people are beginning to appreciate the efforts put in by animators and production houses to create entertaining movies. Production houses like Walt Disney Productions, Pixar Ltd, Warner Bros and DreamWorks Animation, etc have pumped in millions to make these movies as they see a potential in the market. Movies like Gravity, Troy, World War Z, Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter series etc and television series like Games of Thrones, Walking Dead and many others have made effective use of VFX to make believable scenes and characters, resulting in awards and accolades. This emphasises the importance of technology to make a successful product. So what does the combination the animation and VFX industry provide enthusiasts and aspiring

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10 common misconceptions about visual effects

Published on October 10, 2014, by in VFX.

We are already in the tenth month of the calendar year. So we thought it would be fun to list top 10 for various things that would help you know the industry better and build a successful career. Let’s start with breaking a few misconceptions. Ever since Steven Spielberg released his chair-clenching thriller, Jaws, in 1975, visual effects have constituted a significant amount of the budget of practically every movie released. Although visual effects are here to stay, many misconceptions continue to exist that deter producers from entering the arena. Here are 10 common myths that make rounds about visual effects. #1 Visual effects is animation Even though a lot of progress has been made, people continue to believe that animation and visual effects are the same thing. This is highly inaccurate. Visual effects are the special effects applied to live cinematography, while animation refers to creating the illusion of

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Realism in VFX

Published on September 26, 2014, by in VFX.

One of the most common things that is said by an audience who has just witnessed spectacular special effects is, “that looked so real!” In fact, a VFX artist is recognised when his work features characters or backgrounds that appear to be real. This does not mean that the featured work must necessarily mimic real life. For example, no one really believes that a purple elephant exists just because they see it on screen. And yet, those very audience are enthralled to see a purple elephant whose skin texture and colour compositing is done by paying great attention to detail. That is when the audience come out of the theater saying,“that looked so real!”   A common misconception is that all a VFX artist does is to make objects look real. Besides merely replicating real life, one of the challenges that are overcome by photo real phenomenon is to re-create

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The Lego Movie: VFX Breakdown

Published on September 22, 2014, by in VFX.

Two years in the making, with most of its production done in Australia, The Lego Movie has already grossed over $400 million worldwide. A well-formed script demanded strong VFX effects and complex stop-motion techniques, and that is exactly what Animal Logic – the principal animators of the movie – delivered.   One of the key elements of the movie was that it had to be made out of bricks. At any point of time, the animators wanted to be able to select, animate and interact with those bricks to bring out the real essence of the script. This is why each brick was built and animated individually by an artist. For example, when a young kid doesn’t press the Lego down completely, it’s not mathematically perfect. So the artists brought a little ‘jitter’ into the animation making it look like the Lego blocks were not stuck on properly. The Legos

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Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – A VFX breakdown

Published on August 14, 2014, by in Animation, VFX.

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are the latest superheroes to hit the big screen. The four brothers: Leonardo, Donatello, Raphael and Michelangelo originally hit the theaters in 1990. They returned in 1991 with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Part 2, with the third part in the trilogy being released in 1993. This summer, they are back with their fourth film and they go to work to save the people of New York City from Shredder and his foot clan. Actress Megan Fox, who plays the part of reporter April O’Neil, explains it, “the animation, special effects and 3D are nothing short of amazing.” Video description: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – the official trailer Producer Micheal Bay spares no expense in utilising new technology to mesh with thrilling CGI action sequences, giving more than just a facelift to the turtles themselves. Armed with the sophisticated motion capture system of special effects company,

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