There is a lot of nonsense out there on the internet, and often the line between fact and fiction is a blurred one. For the VFX industry however, the net provides a sturdy back catalogue of fact based webinars, tutorials and breakdowns, with many of the key players in the business regularly exhibiting online what they do. The internet is truly a tool that when utilised, can inspire and educate.
Don’t you just hate it when you watch a couple get together that you’ve been rooting for throughout the movie and then a giant mutant bug stabs her in the stomach and it’s all over? Yeah we hate it too. If you’re um-ing and ah-ing where this scene-setting image is from then it was, of course, the original Starship Troopers film, released in 1997.
Success stories about our escapees are always a pleasure to write up. What's even better though is the opportunity to write another, on the same person, just a year later! Mark Pascoe recently answered some questions for us, explaining his journey from studying Sports Science at University to working on the VFX for an Emmy nominated TV Show for the Discovery channel.
It’s fair to say that the world of VFX is a bit like a tardis, a tardis that escapee Allyn Lawson knows all about.
We’ve been catching up with lots of the escapees from over the years, and one story in particular has been hugely inspiring to us. Having studied a ten week Maya comprehensive course at Escape Studios back in 2003, Alenka Abraham has paved a very exciting career for herself. Taking on an R&D software project at Glassworks, Alenka met her future business partner, Adam Cubitt. Together they set up Existential Ltd., a company that develops both real-time and off-line computer visualisation and animation technology. Collaborating with leading post-production companies like MPC, and many others across the UK, they’ve been involved in pioneering projects and are making quite a name for themselves.
Yes, I really went there. A new trailer has been released for the updated version of Total Recall, and gone are the days of Arnie showing his rippling torso and basking in the limelight. This adaptation follows Doug Quaid (Colin Farrell) on his quest to find something better than his current life. After discovering ‘Rekall’, and being warned against it, he decides to rebel (against the norm, funnily enough) and visit the place regardless. This results in Doug Quaid having to question everything to try discover what is, and isn’t, real. The film boasts robots, a futuristic (yet dark) London and a whole lot of CG from MPC, Double Negative and Prime Focus. So from an industry point of view, it's definitely going to be worth a watch.
Last night we fought off the threat of rain, heated up the barbies and started cooking for our Assimilate, HP and Escape Studios BBQ in the Shepherd’s Bar and we are so proud that it was a huge success! A big thank you to everyone who made the journey down to Shepherd’s Bush for this very special event.
We’ve just had some exciting news from the lovely people at Creative Skillset. The creative industries’ sector skills council are currently running a pilot scheme for short courses that provide training in areas such as TV, film, radio, interactive media, animation, computer graphics, facilities, photo imaging, publishing, advertising and fashion & textiles. By making training in these areas more readily available, they hope to open up these industries and create a more diverse pool of talent right here in the UK. And we’re delighted to play a part in that ambition.
Last Monday night saw the premiere of the The Amazing Spiderman in Leicester square. Whilst the premieres are continuing elsewhere around the globe I thought I’d bring you a bit of information as to why we at Escape are excited for the latest installment from the Spiderman franchise.
Last week was an interesting week for movie fans. Our prayers were answered when Michael Bay's production of Ninja Turtles was shut down (he decided that Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles should be neither mutants nor teenagers, apparently, and the world decided to hate him). The Amazing Spiderman had it's London Premiere, another 45 minutes worth of TV spots for The Dark Knight Rises were released and the world was given Abraham Lincoln; Vampire Hunter.
Usually, comic book adaptations tend to be successful at the box office; Spiderman, Batman, The Hulk, The Avengers to name a few. However, there are exceptions; Green Lantern, Elektra and of course, Judge Dredd. Judge Dredd looked promising, we all love a bit of Stallone but the actual outcome, to put it nicely, didn’t quite live up to expectations.
Having previously worked in the games industry and studied Computer Games Art at degree level, Ewan Armstrong wanted to broaden his skill set to make the transition into film and TV media. Ewan made the decision to study at Escape because he saw an opportunity to fill the gaps in his knowledge on production rendering techniques, camera tracking and compositing, all while being in an environment closely linked to the VFX industry.
Last night my partner in crime (Fellow marketeer Ellen Payne) and I were fortunate enough to attend an exclusive premiere at Framestore’s in-house cinema to see Snow White and The Huntsman and wow – it was good. After a long busy day in work, I didn’t really have any expectations of how good the film might be (in fact, I was more excited about the possibility of an end-of-day cinema snooze). But no such luck, the film was awesome! And I sat wide eyed for the whole 127 minutes. As well as the dashing huntsman (Chris Hemsworth, Thor), the Visual Effects was nothing short of incredible. From the dark army made of a thousand shards of glass to the oil-dripping evil queen Ravenna and sparkling gold animated mirror, it really is a feast for the eyes.