Post Magazine

November 2013

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The film's time machine sequences made good use of the stereo 3D effect. rendering a little slower, we invest time in speeding things up — making things more efficient, lightening poly count, reducing texture map size, things of that nature. Our farm is at about 500 machines to render on. With our approach, which is quick, wonderful films — we don't like to spend several years on them — we keep that render farm constant and adjust towards it. Most of the rendering is Dell, and most of the workstations are Dell also." Post: Tell us about your feather system? Peterson: "We are extremely proud of it. We made it from scratch. It's called Avian, and it basically allowed us to quickly and efficiently feather all of our turkeys. I think that was a significant challenge because we had to develop this while in production. A lot of studios will devote years to tools of this nature, but we were able to get it in production in only about six months. We continued to tweak it for a few months after that, but we put some of our best and brightest on the problem and they did a fantastic job. The feathers really move naturally.There is not a lot of penetration so we're real proud of that tool." Post: What were the ultimate delivery The turkeys got their feathers from Reel FX's proprietary Avian system. requirements for the film? Peterson: "We delivered a mono and 3D stereo version. I think it's debatable. The industry is slowly moving away from stereo, but it's still expected delivery at this time, so we made sure we had a stereo [version]. Our approach to stereo is a more conservative approach than some studios. We like the stereo to accent story and not to become a major player. We definitely will continue to do stereo films." Post: Are there scenes that make good use of the stereo 3D effect? Peterson: "The time travel scene is probably good. Some of the shots in the big battle scene at the end, between the turkeys and the pilgrims, with the cannon ball fire, would be a good stereo moment. We've got the original 'bullet time' [effect] there." Post: Is it tough switching back and forth between the temp voice talent and the actual actors? Peterson: "We prefer to animate to the actual talent, as opposed to handing them an animation and having them try to match to it. Generally, animation has three to five iterations and then it's final. We try to schedule it that by third iteration, we've got the actual talent audio in place. Generally, we feel we get much better results when the animation is actually animating to the actual talent audio." Post: What's next for Reel FX? Peterson: "We're actually working on another project. Our second film is in full production. It's called Book of Life. I believe it ships in about a year (October 2014/Guillermo del Toro producing). We have two production crews and they basically leapfrog each other. Some of us that worked on Free Birds are now working toward our third motion picture, which is Beast of Burden. It's a film about the graphic novel. It's a little spooky, but not scary for kids. It's fully animated and is about dogs that protect humanity from ghosts. There's a small team of us working on that now." Stormy Weather on Super 35mm and HD StormStock® The world's premier storm footage library. (817) 276-9500 Post • November 2013 9

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