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Author: Ian Failes

‘A Surreal Lucid Nightmare’


That’s a great way to describe anything, let alone a cinematic launch trailer. So when Axis Animation followed the idea for the new Dawn of War III, I had to to talk them – here’s the final piece for Cartoon Brew, with LOTS of behind the scenes.

It’s complicated

The Revenant (2015)

Thrillist recently asked me to come up with the most complicated special effects in recent films. I had a great time looking into some seamless effects work that not everyone might know – not just the big CGI moments but clever and complicated filming and compositing work. Share your thoughts on the list.

The enduring allure of the Hollywood monster


French filmmakers Alexandre Poncet with Gilles Penso are obsessed with movie monsters. But when the duo searched the Hollywood landscape for a film that chronicled the fascinating world of creature effects and model making in sci-fi, horror and fantasy films, they simply could not find a good one. So they did what any intrepid documentarians would do – they made that film themselves.

The result is Creature Designers – The Frankenstein Complex, an insight into some of the most revered monster makers around; artists such as Rick Baker, Mike Elizalde, Alec Gillis, Chris Walas, Tom Woodruff Jr., Greg Nicotero, John Rosengrant, Richard Taylor, Phil Tippett and many others. A number of Hollywood directors who share an equal love of movie monsters also lend their considerable weight to the doco, including Guillermo del Toro, John Landis and Joe Dante. Even Kevin Smith is in there.

Enjoy vfxblog’s Q&A with the directors and their journey in making the film.

The SIGGRAPH 2016 production sessions are huge


It’s amazing sometimes to think how accessible SIGGRAPH is as a conference. SIGGRAPH is a research conference, first and foremost, but that doesn’t mean only researchers can learn and participate. In fact, one of the best parts of the computer graphics event is the mix of sessions and experience, many based on recent releases of massive feature films and games. That’s exactly what the Production Sessions are about. Here’s a run down of what’s in store, starting on Sunday 24 July in Anaheim.