Cracking Job by MPC & mocha Pro

Cracking Job by MPC & mocha Pro

If you’ve been hiding under a rock for the last, let’s say 6 months to a year, then you may be unaware of the new Tim Burton movie, Dark Shadows, released this month.

Another eerie and dark comedy from Burton that reunites the director with Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham-Carter to create a tour-de-force recreation of the 1970s soap Dark Shadows. The cast also includes Michelle Pfeiffer, Jonny Lee Miller and Chloe Grace Moretz.

Here is a brief overview of what you’ve been missing. The plot revolves around Barnabus of the wealthy Collins family (Johnny Depp) a notorious lothario turned vampire by scorned ex-lover Angelique Bouchard (Eva Green). After being exposed as a vampire, Collins is lynched by the townspeople, chained, stuffed into a coffin and buried alive. After almost 200 years Barnabus is freed accidentally from his encased casket, and returns to the family home only to find his house occupied. He befriends the new family and settles back in his humble abode.

Sounds straight forward right? But it's at this point that the chaos begins to ensue… Angelique finds that Barnabus has escaped, hunts him down and threatens him to either love her or to face the consequences. Ta-Dah!!

Now on to the interesting VFX stuff: with the majority, heck, in all of Burton’s films CGI holds a key role. And Dark Shadows is no different. Visual effects on the movie range from digital constructions of the Collins house, done by our friends at The Senate to precise blink removal from over 700 shots (Depp’s character is a vampire and in effect never blinks). But what interests us the most is the cracking of Angelique Bouchard’s skin towards the climax of the film as handled by MPC. When Angelique’s plan started falling apart so does she, literally!

Eva Green’s character was agreed upon to have a porcelain complexion that began fracturing as her evil plan fell apart. This was done not using special effects make-up but image markers and filmed with a primary and two witness cameras.

The gradual facial fracturing of Angelique’s skin was then created using Adobe Photoshop art and then combined with object tracking with mocha Pro. mocha was used to lock onto Eva’s skin and accurately track in 2D. The transformation from porcelain princess to splintering sorceress took a staggering 115 shots. A big round of applause to MPC and yet another success story for Imagineer Systems and mocha Pro!

Head for your local cinema, grabs some popcorn and settle in for some stunning CGI now as Dark Shadows was released on May 11th. Let us know what think too...

And for a little more insight into mocha Pro don’t forget to register for our mocha Pro V3 demo event on May 30th. Places are filling up quickly so reserve yours here.

0 Comments Olivia Grout

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Olivia Grout
Tue 22 May 2012: 12:06pm

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