de­sign­ing a World Was no small feat for the film­mak­ers

3D World - - FEATURE -

When di­rec­tor Chris­tian Rivers came to Mortal

En­gines, there was al­ready a wealth of art­work re­lat­ing to the fu­ture world imag­ined by au­thor Philip Reeve, in­clud­ing by Reeve him­self, who had ren­dered his uni­verse in very much a Vic­to­rian ‘steam­punk’ look.

What was added for the live-ac­tion film were very prac­ti­cal de­signs that al­lowed whole cities to move, or air­ships to glide by. This work was car­ried out un­der­neath pro­duc­tion de­signer Dan Hen­nah. Mortal En­gines’ art de­part­ment in­cluded, of course, con­tri­bu­tions from the le­gendary Weta Work­shop, who in­formed set dec­o­ra­tion as well as prop builds.

Amongst the de­signs was that of the air­borne city, Airhaven. Here the art de­part­ment utilised Hololens Holo­graphic, a mixed-re­al­ity toolset that helped vi­su­alise the com­plex struc­tures of the city. By wear­ing the Hololens head­set, artists could nav­i­gate a 3D model and see it as if it had al­ready been built on the stage. Then they could make the nec­es­sary tweaks and changes be­fore ac­tual plans or con­struc­tion be­gan. Steam­punk com­bined with fu­ture tech­nol­ogy cer­tainly seemed apt for the world of Mortal En­gines.

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