February 5, 2007


The robot imagines dropping a bolt and then being banished from the line, leaving him out on his own to finding work - first as an electronic sign, and later in a fast food drive through.

To accurately create motion not easily achieved by the real robot used during the filming process, Sway shot basic photography of the robot in various positions, creating a model reference to aid in the 3D replication. High Dynamic Range Imagery (HDRI) was also recorded from multiple angles to generate a simulated render of what the CG robot would have looked like, had it been filmed that way.  

In addition to the photoreal 3D robot, the studio also created the illusion of a water-filled LA River. To add the effects of moving water into the usually dry river, Sway studied the nuances of the real thing and applied those observations to the CG water surface as multiple layers of procedural texture. The studio also provided HD Flame compositing for scene clean-up, CG integration and extensive beauty work on multiple cars.

NewTek LightWave and Autodesk 3DS Max was used for animation and 3D work. Luxology Modo was used for modeling and D2's Nuke for compositing. Graphics processing was powered by Nvidia Quadro technology.

Sway credits include VFX supervisor Richard Wardlow, Flame artists Ben Looram and Rob Trent, compositors Maciek Sokalski and Chris Bankoff, rotoscope artists Meg Morris and 3D artists Rob Glazer, Rob Meyers, Daniel Buck and Graham Fyffe.