August 11, 2006


In one scene, artists created an effect where a character causes an apple to slowly vanish through the power of his mental energy. "We used a volumetric rendering technique coupled with a fluid simulation to produce the main element," recalled Luma Pictures CG supervisor Vincent Cirelli. "The end result is an apple which disappears dimensionally towards its core."

A more complicated effect involved a character using super powers to repair a spaceship engine. "We needed to convey the concept that the spaceship engine is not operating properly in the beginning of the sequence due to a misconfigured reactor," Cirelli explains. "To illustrate this, we designed a series of geometric interlocking cylinders that could only fit together if rotated in a specific way. The design of this puzzle presented many challenges in that we needed to allow clearance between the shapes to rotate and translate precisely into place in three dimensions."

A third sequence involved a paint ball fight. In that scene, a group of characters comes under a paint ball barrage and Luma's role was to create the colorful balls in CG so that their flight paths could be individually controlled.

"We realized early on that the paint balls would need a special compositing treatment to make them visible during the dynamic lighting scenarios encountered throughout the sequence," says Cirelli. "To accomplish this, we assigned a shader that allowed us to select and change specific balls on a case-by-case basis very easily. When you watch the sequence, you accept the balls as real."