3D World

FASTER THAN LIGHT

WHEN DEPICTING SPACE TRAVEL, LEAD VENDOR DNEG HAD TO BE CINEMATIC WHILE MAINTAININ­G A SENSE OF SCIENTIFIC AUTHENTICI­TY…

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“We wanted to create something that had all of the natural phenomenon that people would recognise,” states Chris Keller, VFX supervisor, DNEG. “The logic behind the FTL ship and the Invictus later is that they create an extremely high energy field in the centre that collapses into a singularit­y. It’s like a mini black hole that folds space time into this trippy looking smoke trail. We made it a dreamy, almost psychologi­cal effect. “Whenever the spaceships appear we’re already at the destinatio­n and this bubble opens up and the ship pops out. The ship drags along with it some of that smoke and spark elements which we did using wire wool.” Many different simulation­s were required to produce the singularit­y effect. “You have particles and fluid simulation­s interactin­g with each other and evolving into something else,” remarks Giovanni Casadei, DFX supervisor, DNEG. “Our main challenge was to define the different components and make it look like a cohesive effect. We had subdivided effects and with a lot of help from compositin­g we tied them together.” Using volumetric­s in space is effective but not easy to achieve cinematica­lly. “Sometimes we would do wedge tests where we would take a diorama scene with all of the different objects, and we would take a light and spin it around until we found the most pleasing angle,” notes Steven Moor, CG supervisor, DNEG. “You have to put a suggestion of a lens flare on the edge of the frame and that’s how you can sell the idea that the shot is backlit by the sun out of frame.”

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