Computer Graphics World

May 2010

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■ ■ ■ ■ CGI/Stereo 3D equels can be a little like high school reunions. You want to revisit old friends, but when you arrive, you realize you landed in some kind of alternate reality. T e prom princess is now a tough cookie. T e class clown turned into a donkey. T e fl irt got fat. From far, far away, high school may have seemed like a fairy tale. But, stuff happens. So, too, with the characters in Shrek Forever After, the latest and last in a series of four animated features from PDI/DreamWorks that started with the Oscar-winning Shrek in 2001. In this fi lm, all the familiar fairy- tale characters except Shrek change person- ality and sometimes size after he spins them into an alternate reality. T e cir- cus master for the wicked whirlwind is the devilish Rumpelstiltskin, who persuades our favorite green ogre to sign a magical contract. When Shrek does, the Kingdom of Far Far Away rips apart and reforms itself into a rougher, darker world. T e characters have the same voices—actors re- turning for the fi nal Shrek chapter include Mike My- ers (Shrek), Cameron Diaz (Princess Fiona), Antonio Banderas (Puss In Boots), Eddie Murphy (Donkey), and Julie Andrews (Queen Lillian). But, in the alternate world Shrek enters, every character we know has led a diff erent, horrible life. Donkey doesn’t recognize Shrek and gallops away from him. Princess Fiona is still an ogre, but now she’s an athletic warrior who tosses her long hair in defi ance; in this world, ogres are hated and hunted. Even the gingerbread cookie is a hardened gladiator. “Gingy is forced to fi ght animal crackers to the death,” says director Mike Mitchell. “It’s a vio- lent scene. Crumbs fl y everywhere.” T is is the fi rst Shrek Mitchell has directed, though like many on the crew of approximately 500 artists, he has worked on previous Shrek fi lms. “We held onto as many of the stars from previous fi lms as we could, and we also injected a new energy by bringing in artists fromSouth- park and people I worked with on other jobs, like SpongeBob,” Mitchell says. “But, we made sure everyone was a gigantic Shrek fan. T e challenge was that this sequel had to be as good as all the ones before, to be the best ever. And it’s in [stereo] 3D.” Images ©2010 DreamWorks Animation LLC. 8 May 2010

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