It's absolutely staggering when you consider the visual effects tools that modern-day Hollywood productions have at their disposal. Even the most basic green-screen effect can make the giant ants in Them! or the rubber-suited kaiju of Godzilla's heyday look archaic by comparison. When you consider the insanely large budget for a major summer blockbuster like Avengers: Infinity War, the possibilities are just endless.
Luckily for you, VFX vendor Framestore has released a nifty little reel documenting how it brought certain moments, mainly the battle in downtown Manhattan, to life. Believe it or not, the Russos didn't actually fly an alien spaceship over New York, and they didn't send Tom Holland (Peter Parker/Spider-Man) into space.
Watch the video below and see just how much computer-based compositing is needed to bring a major comic book spectacle to life.
With nearly 3,000 visual effects shots in the movie, Marvel Studios needed to hire a bunch of different VFX vendors to handle different chunks of the project, so that it would be finished on time within its year-and-a-half production. Co-director Joe Russo talked about this and the thousands of people needed to make it happen on the directors' commentary he did with his brother Anthony and Infinity War screenwriters Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely.
"I think we used every major VFX company in the world ... I think we had upwards of 15 to 20 vendors working on the movie ... It is arguable the biggest workload in VFX history," Joe says, listing them off one by one. Digital Domain brought Thanos (Josh Brolin) to life, Weta did the battle on Titan, and ILM did the fight in Wakanda. And now, thanks to the reel above, we know that Framestore handled the New York-based scenes.
"A movie like this is not accomplishable without every single person that is recognized here," Joe also says. "These are truly collaborative efforts, they require everyone working in concert together in support of one goal, which is telling the best story possible, making the best movie possible."