Release Date: Sept 26th!

by - 2012/09/10 31 Comments Production, Random

So! We’re back in the studio and moving ahead- and we have a release date! Sept 26th! Just over two weeks from now. I dunno- maybe that seems like a good chunk of time to you guys, but to us it’s not much; we have to make a whole DVD before then! Ton just put up a previous blogpost listing all of the extra features we’re going to try to cram on there. Whole buncha goodies.

So mark your calendar! Tell your mom! Pay your internet bill! Look for leaked torrents! We’re finally gonna release this thing!

Less Than a Week!

by - 2012/08/22 20 Comments Production

we’re at the end of our rope! hohoho

We premier in less than a week! Will we make it?! WILL WE MAKE IT?*

Scrubbing through the timeline is super fun; just a crazy strobing mass of absurd colors and visuals. We’re not entirely done yet- we still have a couple hand-replacement shots to wrap up, and we’re probably going to be re-rendering some of the big shots till close up to the end, but 98%(ish?) of the film is at least at ‘Final 1’ status. ‘Final 1’ means, ‘yeah, it’ll work. We won’t cry if we show that at the premier**’.

Some of us are working on wrapping up the few remaining shots, but most of us are actually going in and upgrading ‘Final 1’s to ‘Final 2’s or 3s or 4s (or… far far more.) Which is super great for pleasing our perfectionist sides.

And the music and sound! Joram Letwory’s been delivering some fantastic things these past few weeks, and whhewhwhew it’s incredible how much it elevates*** the film. Since the film is so short, and we’re trying to cover so much ground, it goes all over the place pretty quick, so being able to come up with a score that follows the beats of the film without feeling like it’s being yanked all over the place is a huge feat, and especially towards the middle the music takes the form of a polite host, staying out of the way, but still giving you tips on how to best enjoy your dinner, or where the bathroom is****.

Joris and I are going to start grading tomorrow using Sergey’s new incredible grading tools he’s put in the sequencer (I suspect a rad blogpost will be coming out about this at some point- but they’re nifty!). We’re gonna convert the STFU room into a little grading suite*****, and lock ourselves in there till the film’s done.

So yeah- a lot’s going on this last week, and it’s probably going to get pretty hectic, but man- oh man- it could have been so much more so. somuchmoreso.





**at least nothing that can’t be smothered gently into a pillow.
***This is a producer buzzword meaning, ‘makes better’.
****This is a metaphor, and I am the first to admit it kinda fell apart towards the end there.

Music Demo

by - 2012/07/30 37 Comments Production

So Joram has been doing some crazy great music- and we figured it’s about time you guys heard a bit more of it! (the teaser also featured his music)

Performances from Sergio Hasselbaink, Derek de Lint, Rogier Schippers, and Jody Bhe.

The visuals are our current WIP for the week, so I’ll try to post an update soon!

“Make Stuff More Real”

by - 2012/07/06 34 Comments Artwork, Compositing
(Not a real site. But it should be.)



We’re making a movie. And it has a lot of VFX shots in it (110ish?). And they were not photo-real enough. So now we’re making everything more realistic! And keeping up with our quote of 50 seconds per week.*

You want to know what’s tricky? Staring at a picture that looks pretty good, but not entirely realistic, and trying to figure out what exactly is off about it.


Final Shots!

by - 2012/06/22 31 Comments Production

So- this last week has by far been one of the most rewarding! We’ve finally primed the pump, and renders are coming out of the farm in a steady flow. We have about 140 seconds of ‘finished-ish’ film- stuff that’s come out of the farm, and more or less works (though in a lot of cases we may through it through the farm again, just to fix something small). Meaning- we’re actually on schedule! For now….

For time-based effects and problems, we can’t see if they work or not till we send them through the farm- and sometimes the farm itself introduces glitches- so we’ve been doing lots of re-renders. But the farm’s keeping up!

I think it’s kind of amazing, actually- all of our posts have been showing the same old stuff over and over (even now I’m just kinda reposting some things you’ve seen before), but we have a ton of new finished stuff sitting around. I should upload some of that. Later!

That said: So many cool final shots! So I’m gonna do a super lazy blog post and just put up some framegrabs!

ALSO: Teaser next week?

Robots climb the church tower! Check out the eyes Kjartan painted on the back of one of em. We’re making all of the robots a bit more individualized.


Scientist Shootout Allabouts.

by - 2012/06/08 22 Comments Artwork

The biggest focus this week was trying to get the shootout scene in the scientist’s tunnel completed. As with everything, it was a crazy balancing act of figuring out the right ratios of feasible render times to sample rates to noise reduction.

Just figuring out how to light realistically in cycles has been one of the biggest challenges. Cycles is incredible for smaller stuff, but once you get up into massively complex environments, it starts to slow way down, and you have to start throwing more and more cheats in there to make things really work. We know what we’re going for, but sometimes it’s a bit like learning a new language to figure out how to make the tools do what we want.

That said, we must be learning or something, because everything is looking better and better.


Filming Complications! (Considerations?)

by - 2012/05/03 26 Comments Filming

Are we having them? Eh, nothing unexpected! But somebody asked if we could do a blog post about things that can become complicated on the actual filming front (we do tend to be a bit Blender-cenctric). The differences between making a film and making an animation. These are some of the things we’ve been having to think about over the past (and rest of this) week.


Anyone Good at making Maps/Blueprints?

by - 2012/04/26 15 Comments Uncategorized

EDIT: Got what we needed! THANKS! If anyone else has been working on stuff, feel free to still send it in! I’m sure we’ll still have a great use for it. We’re going to have diagrams/blueprints everywhere. But don’t start if you haven’t already. 

This entire film takes place in one location, presenting us with a lot of interesting opportunities. We already have a blend file representing the entire place, meaning that I can just sit back and fly around the scene to identify possible shot angles and stuff like that- perspectives that would never occur to us thinking about the scene just our heads. Since the entire set up is actually all planned out in physical space, I’d love to take as much advantage of that as possible.


April 20th Animatic

by - 2012/04/22 18 Comments Uncategorized

Here’s the current state of the animatic. Getting increasingly flushed out with the camera moves we’ll probably be using on set. We have a lot of planning with the production team this week- all this stuff is finally coming together!