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SFX: The Sci-Fi and Fantasy Magazine - - Jupiter Ascending -

ef­fects, to lev­els we hadn’t used be­fore. We wanted to do our best in a way that was as seam­less as pos­si­ble. That took quite a bit of train­ing, re­search, chore­og­ra­phy. To be able to re­ally get a prac­ti­cal base in a lot of the stunt work, the vis­ual ef­fects work. We had to work out Chan­ning’s char­ac­ter, Caine. We knew we wanted him to be able to pro­pel him­self through the air. But we wanted to do it in a way that hadn’t been seen be­fore. Then we came up with this anti- grav­ity boots con­cept. Once we’d done that, we said, ‘ Fine, we have a con­cept. How does the body move?’ Be­cause we wanted to be able to cap­ture a lot of that, and then build the vis­ual ef­fects around it.

“We cre­ated this huge half- pipe over in Ber­lin, and we had some of the best skaters in the world. We had rollerbladers, we had surfers, what­ever. Just study­ing mo­tion. Then we cre­ated prac­ti­cal ma­chines, most no­tably two huge re­volv­ing tread­mills that were 15 feet in the air, with which you could ac­tu­ally move in three di­men­sions. We got to a point where that worked, then we had to get Chan­ning trained up, get his body­work work­ing, get his dou­ble’s. Be­cause in the movie you see Chan­ning fly­ing through the build­ings of Chicago. We didn’t have Chan­ning hang­ing up there, but a lot of that was based on a stunt dou­ble do­ing all of that stuff. There was a way to do it with dig­i­tal peo­ple, and that’s been done very well be­fore. But by hav­ing Chan­ning do­ing a lot of his own work, and hav­ing his dou­ble do­ing the more dif­fi­cult stuff, and then just lay­er­ing it to­gether with vis­ual ef­fects, it gave us an old school phys­i­cal­ity to the work.”

Hill says it’s the scene in most likely to blow au­di­ences away – an adrenalised six and a half minute ac­tion se­quence that oc­curs shortly af­ter Caine and Jupiter meet.

“Our big chase through Chicago,” Hill says proudly, “is just stunning to look at. This is where we find that Chan­ning is able to move him­self around through space. It was chal­leng­ing in a num­ber of ar­eas. In the vis­ual ef­fects world, we were gonna have twenty- five hun­dred vis­ual ef­fects shots, but we wanted to use more phys­i­cal things for the vis­ual ef­fects to build on. Since they were both go­ing to be fly­ing through the canyons of the city, we wanted to make that prac­ti­cal. So we com­mis­sioned a new multi- cam­era rig. Then we put that in a he­li­copter and trained a stunt man to ac­tu­ally

Jupiter As­cend­ing Hill tells SFX the Wa­chowskis’ life­long love of SF and fan­tasy cinema fed into the uni­verse of Jupiter As­cend­ing.

“They ob­vi­ously have a great in­ter­est in, and grew up watch­ing, a lot of stuff. There are a lot of space- based films. There are a lot of el­e­ments that come into the whole sci- fi thing, and they’ve seen it all, know it all, and are very con­scious of what came be­fore them. But they also wanted to try and reen­vi­sion a lot of those things, as well as bring in things that had made some im­pres­sion and were for­ma­tive to them when they were younger. They drew on pic­tures like The Wiz­ard Of Oz, which, when they first saw them, were so fan­tas­ti­cal and so out there and so charm­ing. There are def­i­nitely el­e­ments of that in it.”

Tooth­brush, sir? The Wa­chowskis haven’t lost their taste for world build­ing.

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