Sunday, November 24, 2019

Acting Through a Mask

As a kid watching this bit of performance by David Prowse in "Return of the Jedi", I was absolutely convinced that Vader's mask was--somehow--changing and emoting. I could see the conflict going on inside of Vader.

Breaking it down today, we realize it's not solely Prowse's performance (his posture, his timing, the angle of his head tilts, the slow head turn to his Emperor then back to his son in pain) that sells the emotion; there are several contextual aspects of the scene that add to it.

🎞️ music: Williams' original trilogy score is at a literal crescendo, achieving its emotional zenith
🎞️ costume: we have never seen Vader's costume this dirty (weakened & vulnerable)
🎞️ camera move: there are very few dolly-in moves in the original trilogy, especially in closeup

In summary movies are cool because it's never just one thing that makes a scene work.

It's every craft working together to achieve a common goal.

Original tweet.

Wednesday, November 06, 2019

Pretend Disney+ Artwork

Disney has been tweeting artwork for each of the movies and TV shows that will be available to stream on its new network, Disney+. One particular tweet caught a lot of folks' attention:

Yep, that's the 1947 20th Century Fox classic "Miracle on 34th Street", rebranded as a Disney film, since Disney now owns and controls all films under the 20th Century Fox banner. Unsettling as it is, I wondered what it would look like if other Fox hits were rebranded as Disney films.

 Here's a link to the original "Die Hard" tweet, where you can follow the thread to my artwork for "Predator 2", "Fight Club" and "Alien".


Bonus: never-before-seen "Predator 2" version:

Sunday, November 03, 2019

I Was on the Light the Fuse Podcast

It was my absolute pleasure to be a guest on the always-fun "Mission: Impossible" podcast, Light The Fuse. Charles Hood and Drew Taylor asked terrific questions and really know their stuff. I'm really proud of this appearance.

Light the Fuse, #67 - Todd Vaziri Part 1
An interview a year in the making (seriously), we talk to Industrial Light & Magic visual effects supervisor Todd Vaziri (@tvaziri on Twitter), who worked on two installments in the franchise! We talk about how he got into the series, working on “Mission: Impossible 3” (including the bridge sequence), the shot J.J. Abrams did himself, and where you can spot R2D2 in the movie! We also get into the Dubai sequence from “Ghost Protocol,” so hang on tight!

Light the Fuse, #68 - Todd Vaziri Part 2
In the second half of our episode with the legendary Todd Vaziri (@tvaziri on Twitter), we do a deep dive into the visual effects of “Ghost Protocol,” including some secrets from the car park sequence, where the A113 Easter eggs are hidden, and what he contributed to the gecko gloves. Also, we get him to dish about what it was like working with Steven Spielberg, Rian Johnson and Michael Bay.

In the episodes, we talk a lot about one shot in "Mission: Impossible III", a shot I went into great detail here at FXRant: Visual Effects Camera Work: "A Fish Called Wanda" and "Mission: Impossible III"

Here are some supporting tweets to the episodes: