“CHERNOBYL” WINS FOR OUTSTANDING SPECIAL VISUAL EFFECTS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE
On September 22, the 71st Emmy award took place in Los Angeles. This year, HBO set a record for the nominations. There are 137 of them. It’s not so difficult to guess, thanks to what projects the company is basking in the spotlight now. “Game of Thrones” and “Chernobyl”. About the last one we’ll talk a little bit more. VFX studio DNEG honoured at Emmy Awards 2019 for ‘Outstanding special visual effects in a supporting role’. They shared this news at their Facebook account last week when the winners were announced on the technical part.
The ‘Chernobyl’ was supervised by VFX supervisor Max Dennison, located at DNEG London. He has 20 years more experience. During this period he managed to work on such film masterpieces as “the Lord of the Rings”, “Harry Potter”, “Avengers”, etc.
In total more than 100 artists worked on “Chernobyl”. 550 of the 846 shots were made by DNEG. Clarisse was chosen as a primary visualization CG tool. Max Dennison: Clarisse seems very well suited to environment work… the lighting in this sort of CG is not an easy thing. Especially when you have the director constantly saying it can’t look like CG, it shouldn’t look CG.
DNEG had to recreate the city and the Nuclear Power plant that exist in the 80ies. “Chernobyl” required a wide variety of VFX technologies including CG, Matte Painting to Refine the footage, creature animation, and Full cg scenes of the Chernobyl power plant both before and after the accident.
The most difficult was to reconstruct the 4th generator unit in the post generating state. For obvious reasons shooting under the sarcophagus was not possible and wouldn’t give the necessary VFX basis. But thanks to a set of photographs of that period and on the basis of Ignalina NPP the destroyed reactor was recreated. Ignalina is a RBMK-type reactor, so it was eminently suitable for shooting.
One of the worst nuclear disaster happened on April 26, 1986. Inspired by real events Chernobyl was doomed to criticism. Each minute has been discussed in-depth. Real liquidators and surviving witnesses were invited in order to find inconsistencies. Highly important was to get out a message, it’s not just series, but a tragedy that has affected thousands of destinies. And it had to be presented not as a documentary, but as a drama.
Surely there are some flaws in the series, especially with regard to the plot. There is huge amount of critical content floating around the internet. “Comrade”, miners, protection with guns and a few less important details notably amused Russian-speaking audience. Meanwhile real liquidators who saw the project confirmed that events were shown to the maximum extent feasible.