Discreet's Visual Effects and Colour Grading Systems used in Master and Commander –
December 23rd, 2003,07:33 PM
Discreet announced today that Asylum and Industrial Light & Magic made extensive use of Discreet technology in the post production work for box office hit Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World...
Over 350 visual effects shots from Master and Commander were created at Asylum, including the pivotal storm sequence that was filmed in a variety of conditions ranging from foggy to bright sunshine. Visual effects shots were created in Discreet's inferno┬« and flame┬«, while Discreet's lustreTM system was used for colour grading to ensure film-look continuity.
"All our visual effects shots for Master and Commander were colour graded using lustre," said Nathan McGuinness, owner of Asylum. "It was unbelievable; using lustre was like having one eye to oversee the project rather than having to calibrate and coordinate 20 different workstations.
lustre played an essential role by acting as both a colour grading/continuity system and a data wrangler. As a result, Asylum was able to significantly streamline the entire post production process. lustre reduced Asylum's film print out to about ten percent of what it is traditionally, by eliminating the need to continuously check colour consistency through wedging individual workstations, taking measurements and then printing to film.
lustre was installed in the screening room for a collaborative colour grading process between the colourist and director Peter Weir. McGuinness added: "This was the director's first experience using digital intermediates. With lustre, it was such a simple, invisible process - he really took to it. Each day, the visual effects team could show him the entire film sequence, in order, and this had a huge impact on the speed with which we could make changes and obtain approvals."
In addition, Discreet's inferno and flame systems are an integral part of Industrial Light & Magic's (ILM) proprietary SABRE visual effects and compositing systems, used to create a few shots for Master and Commander's opening battle sequence and approximately 90 shots for the final battle sequence.
"inferno and flame are used as part of our SABRE system, and continue to provide the performance required for feature films like Master and Commander," said Stefen Fangmeier, Visual Effects Supervisor at ILM. "It was critical that the opening battle scene between the two ships be perfect, so that it would set the stage for the rest of the movie. With SABRE, we were able to create an incredibly realistic battle."
More than 30 ILM compositors worked on Master and Commander's final battle sequence. According to Fangmeier, one of the greatest challenges was the scene in which HMS Surprise's mast breaks and falls. "This scene was heavily computer generated. We brought together hundreds of separate elements like water, miniatures, debris, smoke, and computer-generated people on the ship's deck, along with live actors. SABRE was perfect for such complex compositing, and the result is a state-of-the-art, seamless visual effects scene that lives up to Peter Weir's desire for realism."
Asylum is a director friendly facility that evolves visual effects for feature films, main titles, commercials and music videos. The company has been the creative outlet for such industry craftsman as Ridley Scott, Tony Scott, Michael Mann, Joel Schumacher, Michael Bay, Steven Spielberg, and most recently Peter Weir. The facility offers inferno and flame compositing, 3-D animation and rendering, and supervisory support for photography.
About Industrial Light & Magic
Industrial Light & Magic (ILM) is a Lucasfilm Ltd. company serving the digital needs of the entertainment industry for visual effects. ILM has been awarded 14 Academy Awards for Best Visual Effects and received 16 Scientific and Technical Achievement Awards.
Discreet empowers media professionals to realise the visual experience and transform their most evocative and ambitious visions into reality. Discreet's award-winning solutions are designed for digital media creation, management and delivery-across all disciplines from film and television visual effects, colour grading and editing to animation, game development, web/interactive, and design visualisation. Discreet is based in Montreal, Quebec and is a division of Autodesk, Inc, the world's leading design and digital media creation, management, and distribution company. Product and corporate information: www.discreet.com
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