The Lion King. Making of
Thank God Disney has recently become interested in remakes of their old masterpieces and now we have something to discuss. It is right, why come up with something new, if the old is still quite good and 3D technology has stepped far forward.
So the “Lion King” first came out as much as in 1994. Instantly conquered the hearts of all who saw it. Still Disney knows how to steal the right story. Not many people were able to hold back tears on that very moment. Didn’t cry only those who haven’t watched it, me for example.
Omit further all the details of the plot. The technical part, that’s what is really interesting to us now. You got to admire the picture turned out really live. I don’t think there are those who’ll find a technical jamb in the film. In some places, it really seems like national Geographic’s frame-cutting is being used. All the more that this canal belongs Disney and they could legally use any frame. However, the picture is almost entirely virtual. Just in 1 frame the viewer can see the real Savannah. Can you guess which one?
MPC Film is the Studio responsible for creating all VFX in the film. 130 animators from 30 countries developed the characters of the film for 9 months. Transformation of cartoon character in the “real” image is not so easy. Considering the enormous popularity of the cartoon, the developers realized that the viewer will want to see on the screen the hero from childhood, with his unique character and facial expressions, not a meerkat from a wildlife documentary. Total 86 different species of animals and birds were created, from the main characters to Zebra number 3 in the crowd. The development process began with a visit to Africa. The first sketches were drawn from photos taken during this expedition.
Head animator Andrew Jones and a team of artists started working with previsualization. They created simplified animated scenes that worked in real time in virtual reality. The first versions of locations and characters became part of the Unity game system. According to the Director of the film, John Favreau, they could be transferred directly to the location and stand next to the animated lion.
Virtual production, at this rate, we won’t need actors. Thanks to this, the filmmakers were able to wear VR headsets, walk around the locations and put the frame in the same way as in a regular movie. John Favreau: “the Project literally took filmmakers inside the screen, using a set of specially designed tools, complemented by the HTC Vive virtual reality system and the Unity game engine.”