Behind the Scenes

FLUBBER - FX Credits - FX Review - Behind the Scenes - Stills

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For a particular sequence within the first Thunderbird scene, Williams does a flyby of a flock of geese flying within the clouds. Brought on to produce the geese elements, as well as other greenscreen composites in the film, was C.O.R.E. Digital Pictures, supervised by John Mariella.

C.O.R.E.'s computer generated geese fly through Dream Quest's sky and cloud elements in the Thunderbird flying sequence.
C.O.R.E. was hired partially based on the strength of their CG work in 1996's FLY AWAY HOME, where the Toronto-based house produced CG geese in shots which were simply not possible to photograph with real geese.

Mariella told me that those shots required close collaboration between Dream Quest and C.O.R.E., since they would be handling Dream Quest's backgroud elements: "They supplied us with not only the background elements, but also the motion control data for the camera moves." The shot of the car approaching the geese flying in the air was one of their trickiest shots. "Dream Quest created the motion control camera move on some registration markers. We took that and created a rough pass of the geese flying and reacting to an oncoming cube, the cube representing where we wanted the car to eventually do its thing. DreamQuest then took our motion test and used it as a guide for their motion control car element. Once we had that, we could then fine tune our geese so that they could evade the car with a proper balance of comedic-dramatic timing." Mariella concluded, "I must stress that no geese were harmed in the rendering of these shots."

Initially, it was considered to use the same CG models used for FLY AWAY HOME, but Mariella said, "We pretty much had to completely re-build the geese for this film. In FLY AWAY HOME, the majority of the geese were distant enough that a lot of detail was uneccessary. For FLUBBER's geese shots, one in particular, Les Mayfield wanted a head shot of a goose doing a double-take while flying. This forced us to build a better goose, one that could hold up to the scrutiny of a close-up. What's more, it had to be buffeted by the car rushing by. This meant that we would see ruffling feathers--a detail we hadn't yet developed. The soultion for this eventually involved displacement mapping and some jumping through hoops with Prisms and PhotoRealistic RenderMan."

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