Star Wars fans won’t want to miss the upcoming issue of Cinefex, the bimonthly film magazine that covers visual effects like no other. Due out in mid-February, Cinefex 145 features a breathtaking cover shot of the Millennium Falcon, along with a 30-page story on the making of the film based on in-depth interviews with director J.J. Abrams and the key effects artists who helped bring his unique vision to the screen. The article is accompanied by 39 behind-the-scenes photos and frame clips, many of them exclusive to Cinefex.
Other stories in this issue include Alejandro González Inarritu’s spectacular, Academy Award-nominated The Revenant, along with extensive coverage on Spectre and The Finest Hours – and a VFX Q&A on the sci-fi hit Ex Machina.
In this excerpt from Joe Fordham’s Cinefex article on Star Wars: The Force Awakens, director J.J. Abrams recounts the experience of viewing the first test of BB-8 with special makeup effects and creative droid supervisor Neal Scanlan and team.
The Scanlan team created a full-scale version of the [BB-8] maquette, which puppeteers Brian Herring and Dave Chapman used for BB-8’s audition. “When I first arrived to view BB-8 as a puppet,” J.J. Abrams recalled, “I was nervous. I knew that if it didn’t work, we would have to rely on CG. That might have been okay, but it would have meant that Daisy Ridley, who is seemingly limitless in her capacity to make a scene better, would be acting against nothing. It would never be as good. When I saw the puppet, there was Brian dressed in a green jumpsuit, pushing this thing along, and an amazing thing happened. The puppet was alive, energetic, sweet, a wonderful character – and Brian disappeared. I could see him standing there, pushing this rig, but only BB-8 was present. That was the gift that Neal and his team brought to their creatures – the imagination rendered the operators invisible, and that was so much easier for an actor to work with, rather than trying to imagine everything.”
Cinefex #160 Covers Solo: A Star Wars Story
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