21.02.2018, by Elena Van der Baan
Planet of the Apes
Not as easy as it looks
Andy Serkis, the guru of motion-capture, whom also worked with The Hobbit, plays the role of Caesar, the ape protagonist in the “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes”. Although this technique might be easy to implement and work with in some movies, in the case of this great animation movie, the most important features to capture were the facial expressions, which made it more complex to deal with. In fact, the human and ape expressions aren’t quite the same, a great deal of muscle movement on a human face is a brief expression on an apes face. Therefore, it was a challenge to track and analyse the expression points on the face to match the ones needed for the ape.
The existing thing about the mo-cap used for this animation movie is that there were 50 cameras organized all around the location where the scene was captured, which was outside of New Orleans or in Vancouver forests. In addition to that another cool fact is the use of up to 50,000 processors working all at once to create all the necessary photo-realistic features of apes, such as eyes, fur, fingernails and so on. This is one of the facts that differentiated this animated movie from others that we know.
In this movie, another impressive fact is the one of the sign language used by the apes to express themselves to the humans on their arrival as well as the comprehensive “mumbling” in English which gave another perspective of the Apes, as not only some nightmarish creatures, but interesting and full of emotions. The last interesting fact I would like to leave you upon is that although the movie has been interpreted by the majority of the audience as a War movie, according to Serkis, the movie is about avoiding conflict, creating empathy and focusing on the idea of family.
Different from what you imagined?
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