Posts filed under Video Playback

Live Free or Die Hard

I was the Playback Graphics Coordinator on Live Free or Die Hard. Since most of the large sets on this film needed massive amounts of playback graphics, we needed a minimum of five artist/animators on this film to get the work done in the timeframe.  

I also helped out with the work load building the graphics and programming the playback files for the power plant set...

as well as building some of the content on the Warlock set (based on The assistant art director Jason Sweers' designs).  Both sets had to have timed playback on set of pre-recorded video chat footage between John McClane and the villain Thomas Gabriel.

Due to story changes in Post-Production, most of the story point elements had to be rebuilt.  I was brought back on to assist artist / animator Chris Kieffer with finishing the last screens to be built for VFX & the film's title sequence.

Since the title sequence of the film called for full frame close up shots of computer screens, as a stylistic choice we decided to shoot the graphics with a Sony XDCAM HD camera instead of just rendering out close-up shots.  In the end we felt it had a better look.

Posted on April 11, 2014 and filed under Film, Video Playback.

Oceans 13

One of my tasks on Oceans 13 was to design and build the screens where Oceans' crew mugshots brought up on Bank's office monitors and then manipulated until they can't be recognized.  

We shot a good portion of the crew members in a similar mugshot style so I could cut out pieces like hair, chins, noses, ears, etc... to use to create the new unrecognizable pictures. 

I decided on using a morphing technique on one part of the face at a time which provided a better visual look to the progression of the changing mugshots, but always making sure to leave the eyes so it would still feel like the original actor.  

I also was asked to create the initial design and animation for the Fender Roads video billboard.


For the diamond room graphic I decided to create as a real time 3d graphic in Adobe Director, mainly so it could be triggered to zoom in on the diamond necklaces in the case and still be able to continue rotating the camera smoothly.

I also help out in building some of the many needed casino / slot machine game graphics on the casino floor.

Posted on April 9, 2014 and filed under Film, Video Playback.

Fun with Dick & Jane

Fun with Dick & Jane called for a large news sequence where Dick Harper is a guest on a financial news show called Money Life and becomes the fall guy of his company's mishaps.

Working with the assistant art director Jason Sweers on the look of the show, we knew it needed to look and feel similar to a CNN style show with a little over the top comedic flair.

Since the sequence was entirely shot on a green screen, everything needed to be created digitally, even the set.  I tracked the opening shot in SynthEyes and built and animated the set in 3DS Max & After Effects.

Because the sequence also called for full frame shots, I designed the graphics to scale to any resolution so I could output full frame DPX files for the D.I.  The hardest part was scaling the green screen footage of Jim Carrey.  Since the sequence was shot on standard definition broadcast D1 cameras, I had to use some creative After Effects techniques along with the help of the Algolith AlgoSuite in order to scale the footage from 720x486 to 2k film without getting a really blurry image. 

Lastly, the script also called for a website that makes fun of Dick Harper's flub on national network news.  After meeting with the Director I came up with the idea to do a fun animation instead of just a static website.

Posted on April 4, 2014 and filed under Film, Video Playback, Visual FX.

The Terminal

During Pre-Production on The Terminal, François Audouy and I started working on creating the look for the GHN TV Network.

We felt it needed a familiar feel to the style of news stations at the time. This would make it believable without upstaging the news content, since it needed to be a vehicle for Tom Hank's character to connect with the turmoil in his country.

By using live broadcast switchers, we were able to overlay the GHN graphics live. This allowed us to give Mr. Spielberg the creative freedom to make changes on set.

Posted on April 3, 2014 and filed under Film, Video Playback.