Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Godzilla previs article on Animation World Network

Roaring Through the Previs of 'Godzilla' (full article, with previs/final comparison pictures)

Here are excerpts that describe two of the parts that I helped with when I was on the previsualization team:

"Dan Sarto (AWN)In terms of the third act, what were the biggest challenges you faced in with the previs?
Eric Carney (The Third Floor): The sequence consists of Godzilla, who is fighting two other creatures, the Mutos, in San Francisco. We've seen Godzilla before, and he's kind of like a big lizard, so we had a fairly good idea of how he might move. But one of the biggest challenges was figuring out how to animate the Mutos. When we were given the designs of the creatures, they were still in development actually. There was a lot of exploration work with Gareth in order to figure how the Mutos would fight and how Godzilla would fight them.
We started to look at footage of animals - Komodo Dragons, bears, even some winged creatures. Gareth sent us a lot of reference material of real animals fighting. So we started out doing a lot of fight tests and sending them over to Gareth, figuring out what he liked and didn't like and developing it further. He had a vision for the film, that even though it's a monster movie, it would feel very grounded in reality. So with that in mind you have to think of these monsters just as big animals, and research how big animals fight each other. A lot of the things you might think would be cool for a monster fight aren't the kind of things real animals do. So there was a lot of exploration in finding the right tone."
DSAny highlights from your work on this project?
EC: It was a great project. In the end we had about 40 minutes of previs, once everything had been edited down. So there was a large amount of footage. The halo jump was definitely a highlight, and a lot of the imagery in the final sequence, the trailer, and the poster are close to the previs we did. Working with Gareth too was really a fantastic experience. He was a very collaborative director and a lot of the suggestions we put forward made it into the movie. Seeing the final product was great!

It really was. As mentioned in an earlier Godzilla post, the first Maya scene I animated after graduating from Vancouver Film School was a fight between two enormous monsters in downtown Vancouver. To think that the experience from back then would help inform the motion of the real Godzilla all those years later makes my head spin.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Edge of Tomorrow movie review

Now that Transformers 4 is out and sucking up box office attention like a black hole, I thought I'd mention this movie. It's a great surprise, and people should see it before it's out of theaters. Third Floor did the previs and motion design for the aliens, which translated in the film as erratic and menacing. I kept thinking of alternative ways for it to have ended, but overall it was a very well done movie that could have only been pulled off by a top-notch creative team. Congrats to the filmmakers.

Now I need to finally see Looper...