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Month: June 2017

MPC on its digital make-up advancements in ‘The Mummy’


Previously on vfxblog, The Mummy’s overall visual effects supervisor Erik Nash weighed on crafting the 5 stages of transformation of Princess Ahmanet. Key to bringing her to life in closer-to-human form was augmenting real photography of Sofia Boutella by taking away portions or her face or body to show the re-generation process.

MPC was behind that work, and, in fact, the studio has been pioneering augmentation and ‘digital make-up’ work lately with films such as Ghost in the Shell and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales. MPC visual effects supervisor Greg Butler outlines how it was accomplished in The Mummy in this overview for vfxblog.

Breaking down Princess Ahmanet’s 5 stages in ‘The Mummy’


One of the key visual effects components of Alex Kurtzman’s The Mummy was the Mummy herself – Princess Ahmanet – seen in 5 various stages as she re-generates from her entombed and emaciated state into a more human-esque appearance.

Some shots of the creature were fully digital creations completed by ILM, others were meticulous CG augmentations of actress Sofia Boutella done by MPC, and some were Boutella in make-up and prosthetics.

In the first of two stories about the creature work, overall visual effects supervisor Erik Nash tells vfxblog about the five stages. In a follow-up piece, we talk to Nash’s fellow MPC visual effects supervisor Greg Butler to dive in on the specifics of augmenting Boutella.

Anatomy of a scene: fleeing the undead in ‘The Mummy’


In one incredible action scene in Alex Kurtzman’s The Mummy, Tom Cruise and Annabelle Wallis’ characters take control of an ambulance while being pursued by several undead and Princess Ahmanet (Sofia Boutella).

The high-octane chase sees Nick Morton (Cruise) and Jenny Halsey (Wallis) out-run their attackers, but then dramatically crash the ambulance, before being confronted by Ahmanet. Staging the sequence involved a mix of practical stunts, the last-minute addition of motion capture, computer generated undead, and a bunch of other effects work, as vfxblog finds out from production and MPC visual effects supervisor Erik Nash, and fellow MPC visual effects supervisor Greg Butler.

Quickshots: How that incredible animated mural in ‘Wonder Woman’ was made


Perhaps taking inspiration from The Tale of the Three Brothers animation in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1, Wonder Woman has its own animated sequence. This is seen early in the film when the history of the Amazon women warriors, and their relationship to Zeus, the leader of the gods and Ares, the god of war, is told by Queen Hippolyta to a young Diana.

Looking for a way to depict the history in a Renaissance style, director Patty Jenkins came across a stereoscopic 3D reconstruction of a famous 1878 painting by Jan Matejko called ‘Battle of Grunwald’ (see below). That reconstruction was carried out by Polish studio Platige Image and allowed viewers to see – in 3D – certain aspects of the painting’s characters and action. The director, related overall visual effects supervisor Bill Westenhofer to vfxblog for this first in a new series called ‘Quickshots’, thought something similar could be done in Wonder Woman.

Why I think you should attend the VIEW Conference

This is Russell Earl discussing Captain America: Civil War at VIEW in 2016.

Take it from me, if you want to get a handle on some of the best visual effects, animation, games and VR content being produced right now, come to Turin, Italy in October for the VIEW Conference.

Some big, big projects will be the subject of discussion, including War for the Planet of the Apes, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.2, Rogue One, The Little Prince, Cars 3, LEGO Batman, The Emoji and Smurfs: The Lost Village.