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Storyboard: best of the month in vfx, animation and motion graphics

Blog
16 April 2014

In this month’s Storyboard, a Renaissance for Huge, Wonky gets writer’s block and Stink heads to a swingers’ pool party


Huge designs
Da Vinci’s Demons titles
These are Huge Design’s titles for the second season of the Starz network’s US show Da Vinci’s Demons, a retelling of the life of Leonardo Da Vinci. The director of the titles was Paul McDonnell with art direction by Hugo Moss and Tamsin McGee. The lead illustrator was Nathan Mckenna and the composer Bear McCreary.

Da Vincis Demons titles season 2 from HUGE on Vimeo.



Titanfall intro movie
Spov mixed archive and cgi for its intro movie for the Xbox One First Person Shooter game, Titanfall
For the intro movie for innovative Xbox One multiplayer game, Titanfall, Spov’s Dan Higgot and Allen Leitch decided against the traditional “performance capture and dire dialogue” route often followed by game intros. Instead, the film is a mix of space-race archive and stunning cg vistas of alien worlds.
 “It was our job to put some meat on the bones of where the action’s happening and the universe it was all happening in,” says Spov founder Allen Leitch. “Respawn [the game’s developer] were adamant that it was a human universe the game was talking place in. It was our world not a parallel dimension. That’s why we kicked of with archive footage of the space race and life on Earth.”
The look and feel they wanted was “much more about describing the beauty of space,” says md Dan Higgot. “We’d actually watched Lawrence of Arabia when preparing the pitch thinking about the beautiful strange places on Earth that we could use to film this plausible alien environment, rather than making it fantastical or Star Trek-y.”
An influence also came from shots taken on Nasa’s Cassini mission to Saturn that had a “really peculiar and particular quality,” says Higgot. They had a “very subdued colour palette and a very clear light. Because it was authentic footage from space we felt that we could use it as part of our aesthetic. We weren’t trying to make science fiction but for it to look, to the best of our knowledge, like space travel would look like.”
The sparse subdued palette also extended to the script, which contains only a tiny amount of dialogue. “You need something enigmatic, not something overly expositional,” says Leitch. “We were pushing for it to be devoid of dialogue, but I can see why it needs to be there.”
“You have to be economical,” agrees Higgot. “You have to tell the right amount to set the scene but not too much. With this movie as with many others we had a back and forth conversation with the client about what should be in the script. There’s a tendency to want everything but if you have too many narrative points to hit it’s just rushed and overwhelming.”
And in the end, the client gave Spov a lot of space. “One of the main points in our brief was ‘don’t fuck it up.’ We’ve been assured that we didn’t,” says Leitch. “They trusted our judgement and vision and processes in terms of how we were going to make it look and what the final result was going to be. They placed a lot of confidence in us.”

Titanfall intro sequence from Spov Design + Moving Image on Vimeo.



Stink
Loud Like Love
This is Stink director Saman Kesh's latest video for Placebo for the track Loud Like Love. It's a follow up to last year's Too Many Friends and again features the voice of American Psycho author Bret Easton Ellis who reveals another unfortunate sequence of details and events – this time at a 1960s swingers' 
pool party.

Placebo // Loud Like Love (feat. Bret Easton Ellis) from Saman Kesh on Vimeo.



Wonky Films
Writer’s Block
Writers’ Block is a short film written and directed by Tom Gran and Martin Woolley (AKA The Spin Kick Brothers) and produced by Wonky Films with the support of IdeasTap. Set in a prison for criminally poor writers, it follows a gang of cons who get hold of the script to their own lives and attempt to re-write it in order to make their escape.



blinkink
three mobile
Blinkink’s The Layzell Brothers transformed real telephone conversations into a surreal animated series for Three Mobile through Wieden + Kennedy London. Clips were taken from real customers calling Three Mobile’s free compliment line, the nickname line, the time-wasting line and the lullaby line, and transformed into animated vignettes.

3 Mobile - Nicknaming from Blink on Vimeo.


3 Mobile - Compliment Line from Blink on Vimeo.


3 Mobile - Lullaby Line from Blink on Vimeo.



Intro
F1 opener
Intro designed the opener for BBC Sport’s 2014 Formula One coverage. Idris Elba voices the film that introduces the new era of turbo-charged, power-train-driven F1 cars which means F1 must be 'sculpted from scratch' with a new 'Goddess of Speed standing on the start-line ready to blow you away…' It was ordered by BBC Sport's Richard Gort and directed by Julian Gibbs.

F1 Australia Goddess of Speed from Intro on Vimeo.



Rushes
Tiny Worlds
Tiny Worlds is an in-house project by the Rushes cg team and shows what  happens to the litter on London's streets when we're not looking.

Tiny Worlds // Bulldozer from Rushes on Vimeo.


Tiny Worlds // Submarine from Rushes on Vimeo.


Tiny Worlds // Logging Truck from Rushes on Vimeo.



Beakus
Royal Observatory
These films, designed and directed by Beakus’ Amaël Isnard were aimed at young kids visiting the Royal Observatory.

How Do We Know How Old The Sun Is? from Beakus on Vimeo.


What's Inside A Black Hole? from Beakus on Vimeo.


How Big Is The Universe? from Beakus on Vimeo.



Jelly London
Hack a Chuck
Jelly London made this stop frame film to kickstart Converse’s dedicated  ‘Chuckhackers’ Google Plus page, dedicated to users’ films.

Converse #ChuckHack from Sam Burton on Vimeo.



Not to scale
T Galleria films
Not To Scale and Big Active’s Mat Maitland collaborated on six films for airport retailer T-Galleria featuring Karen Elson.

T Galleria Boutiques - Mat Maitland from Not To Scale on Vimeo.


T Galleria Boutiques - Hawaii from Not To Scale on Vimeo.



T Galleria Boutiques - Singapore from Not To Scale on Vimeo.



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