Issue: Animation - Jul 28, 2004


HOLLYWOOD - Yu + Co (323-606-5050) recently created the main title sequence for Warner Bros.'s "Catwoman." The design studio used cleverly-altered hieroglyphs, news clippings, oil paintings and other media to create the sequence, which suggests an alternate history centering around the migration of an Egyptian Mau and the emergence of women with remarkable powers that coincide with the appearances of cats.

According to Yu + Co creative director Garson Yu, French director Pitof wanted the title sequence to familiarize the audience with the story of the Mau and its relationship to Catwoman.

"We want them to think of Catwoman as very mysterious" says Yu, "as a presence that has always been with us, yet somehow she has escaped our notice."

Art director Yolanda Santosa led the design process, which began with researchers combing through photo archives for a rich assortment of appropriate images. Except for some of the hieroglyphs, none of the imagery involved cats. Yu + Co artists instead carefully altered each image. Matte painters added cats to oil paintings, while other artists drew felines into old ink drawings or added alternate copy and photographs to old newspaper stories.

Once the images were prepared, editors composed the elements into a montage set to a track by composer Klaus Badelt. Finally, artists used color correction, lighting effects and other techniques to give the assembled sequence a unified look and feel.

Credits for Yu + Co go to Garson Yu, creative director; Jennifer Fong, executive producer; Buzz Hays, producer; Yolanda Santosa, art director; Etsuko Uji, animator; Chris Vincola and Kamal Hatami, 3D artists; Elika Burns, Robert Cribbett and Jon Doyle, Shake compositors; Edwin Baker, conceptual designer; Zachary Scheuren, editor; and Danny Mudgett, Inferno artist.