The project came to Picture Mill through Dreamgirls' picture editor Virginia Katz, ACE (Kinsey,
Gods and Monsters), who had worked with the
studio on Jet Li's Fearless in
"[Director] Bill Condon had a very specific idea about that
transition out of the last scene of the movie and into the titles," says
Picture Mill art director David Clayton. "His idea was to end the movie with
the title song; then begin the end sequence with a driving instrumental version
of one of the show stoppers, 'I Love You, I Do,' underneath the picture as the
title lets loose with a sequence of almost blinding kinetics."
To facilitate the transition, Picture Mill created a deep 3D
background animation of soft-focus circular shapes that float through the
screen and the titles. Katz and her editorial team supplied Picture Mill with a
comprehensive reel of select takes for each actor, along with additional wild
clips from the movie. To show as many looks as possible of each actor as
quickly as possible, a design decision was made to use double and triple-split
screens that slid in and out of frame.
Clayton notes that split-screen animation was done within
Final Cut Pro's motion keyframer. "This allowed our editor, Kye Krauter, to
work very quickly and focus on the creative side of the edit instead of having
to export shots in and out of another program. For each character's ID shots,
we used garbage mattes and some light compositing within Final Cut to achieve
just the right look."
Condon later asked Picture Mill to expand the concept to
include many of the key below-the-line players on the production, including DP
Tobias Schliessler, costume designer Sharen Davis, editor Katz, production
designer John Myrhe, and choreographer Fatima Robinson. Each discipline
required acquiring elements, such as costume sketches, production art, and
conceptual designs, that were then inter-cut with the final shots from the movie.
Additional Picture Mill credits included creative director
William Lebeda, executive producer Ty Van Huisen, producer Ryan Mosley, designer Grant Nellessen, 3D animator Bryan Thombs, 2D
animation/compositing artist Josh Novak, and 2D animators Chad Bonanno and
Visit www.picturemill.com to view the titles.