Friday, December 1, 2023
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Simply add bats – befores & afters

On the thirtieth anniversary of ‘Cliffhanger’, a have a look at the, er, very environment friendly bat artwork path for a selected scene.

Challenge #4 of befores & afters journal was a particular problem with an in-depth function on CG chook flocks, together with early flocking instruments developed by Craig Reynolds and Andy Kopra.

Kopra, specifically, capitalized on intensive digital chook simulations with the Boids software program in a number of movies he labored on at Video Picture (later VIFX), considered one of which was Cliffhanger, celebrating its thirtieth anniversary immediately.

One explicit scene within the movie required the heroes to be in a cave, the place they’re immediately confronted with scores of flying bats. See the clip, under.

For problem #4 of the journal, Kopra had been regarding me how administrators and visible results supervisors had tried to explain how they need their CG birds or flying creatures to look. Nicely, on Cliffhanger, with director Renny Harlin, it was a special expertise. Right here’s what Kopra stated:

“When the work at VIFX was to start, the studio despatched the entire set of directions for our portion of the visible results. Just a few printed sheets itemizing the sting numbers of the movie damaging for every shot have been stapled collectively, with a Publish-it Be aware on high that stated, merely, BAT SEQuenCE Add BATS.

add bats

The Publish-it observe in query.

Given such appreciable leeway in design, I used to be involved that a number of iterations can be required to find out what the visible results supervisor had in thoughts. Nonetheless, we met as an alternative with the director, Renny Harlin, and through a number of temporary periods he requested for modifications — and accepted photographs — with the utmost effectivity.

I don’t bear in mind any of the photographs requiring greater than two takes after the unique presentation. Harlin was engaged on one other film on the similar time, so maybe a heightened sense of ‘adequate’ made the mission comparatively painless (no less than, for us).”

Learn the complete story in problem #4, which options an intensive historical past of CG chook simulations.

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