Several of the visual effects supervisors on Charlie and the Chocolate Factory tell Alain Bielik how they managed to incorporate complex CGI.
- Tim Burton’s fondness for practical effects is notorious. On all his movies, he has favored prosthetic make-up, miniatures or stop motion puppets to carry his vision, turning to digital tools only when no other option was available. When he set out to adapt Charlie and the Chocolate Factory for the big screen, he hoped that this approach would — again — suit the project. Roald Dahl’s beloved children’s story tells the tale of a young boy who wins a contest to visit, with four other children, the mysterious chocolate factory of Willy Wonka (Johnny Depp). The plant turns out to be a maze of magical rooms and machines manned by amazing little people, the Oompa-Lompas. Although the fantasy world of Willy Wonka was ideally suited for Burton’s unique visual style, it required the creation of a universe far more complex than any practical effects could achieve. “When we started on the project, we estimated the visual effects shots count at 300 or 400, but it ultimately grew to 800, the majority of which were created by The Moving Picture Co. (MPC),” notes overall visual effects supervisor Nick Davis (Harry Potter 1, Troy). “It grew enormously, and one of the reasons was that Tim was initially a bit hesitant about using too many digital effects. He wanted to do as much as possible in camera and use CGI only when absolutely necessary. For example, one of the most ambitious sequences in the movie involved dozens of squirrels performing very complex actions. We had three options to create them: train real animals, build animatronics or use CG animation. We hoped that we could solely rely on the first two options to create most of the shots, but the movements that the script called for turned out to be too extreme to be accomplished in-camera. In the end, Framestore CFC produced more than 70 shots of very complex CG animation, with Jon Thum supervising the effort. It was extremely difficult....................Read Full Article !!!!