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8.26.2013

SCRIPT TO SCREEN: VFX Breakdowns for World War Z


World War Z | Marc Forster | 2013 | USA, Malta | Format: 35mm | 116 min  
 
Within the overall filmmaking strategy that takes a project from development to distribution, producers need mini-strategies (like Matryoshka dolls) to complete certain complex parts of the film.  One of those mini-strategies involves how best to create effective and convincing special visual effects (VFX).  Digital Arts Staff and Wired had behind-the-scenes access to the making of World War Z which gives us an idea of how the producers and director planned and prioritized their effects (granted their budget was ridiculous but still, resourceful and inventive filmmakers can still take notes and learn how to make amazing VFX even if they don't have the money... like this guy). For the honors, MPC was tapped to provide the VFX using their in-house crowd simulation software, ALICE.   
Led by MPC's VFX supervisor Jessica Norman, the house completed more than 450 shots for World War Z. The firm worked under both the film's original VFX supervisor John Nelson and his replacement, ILM's Scott Farrar. Key scenes that MPC worked on included creating hordes of zombies overwhelming Jerusalem, a plane-crash sequence, and the epilogue. ~~Digital Arts Staff
Here's a glimpse of the careful coordination it takes between the camera crews, lighting personnel, the hand animation team and the digital VFX specialists to get the right look and effects in order.

For more breakdown shot comparisons, click here for pictures and watch the videos below:




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