Considering we’re talking about a fantasy world populated with orcs, it’s no surprise we’ve had to wait a while for the effects work to wrap before we can see Warcraft on the big screen. Now director Duncan Jones has opened up about the monumental challenge of bringing this world to life.
In an interview with Wired, Jones (Moon) touched on the myriad visual-effects challenges that come into play when you’re creating a fantasy film of this scope. Despite the fact that a boatload of the film (obviously) had to be done with green screens, motion capture and CGI, he said they tried their best to make as much tangible material as possible (i.e. sets) to help give the actors a feel for the world:
"Motion capture has become very specialized but also still just a tool of filmmaking. We tried to do a lot of large, in-camera sets so that we had an actual reality that the film was built on top of. Some of the time we had [actors doing motion capture] on location, some of the time we had them on set, sometimes there was green screen.
There was an absolute hunger from ILM to be working on this project. There is another facility—whose name shall not be mentioned—that is also incredibly good at this kind of work, and for ILM this was an opportunity to show they are still the best in the world at special effects."
Of course, Jones also threw a nod to the folks who started it all — videogame developer Blizzard, creators of the game series the film is based on. As fans can likely glean from the concept art that has already been released, Blizzard played a key role in shaping the visual style as they worked to render the atmospheres and characters:
"We worked very closely with Blizzard on the visualization of those characters. We tried to stay as honest to that as possible. There is a translation process between concept artwork and what happens when you create 3-D models, but we had two fantastic teams on either side. The ILM guys did a terrific job of taking this fantastic starting place and turning it into a living, breathing character."
Warcraft opens June 10, 2016. Do you think it can live up to the hype?