Star Wars fans won’t want to miss the upcoming issue of Cinefex, the bimonthly film magazine that covers visual effects like no other. Now available online and in stores, Cinefex 151 features a commanding cover shot of Grand Moff Tarkin, along with a 30-page story on the making of Rogue One based on in-depth interviews with director Gareth Edwards, senior visual effects supervisor John Knoll, and the key effects artists who helped bring the movie to the screen. The article is accompanied by 29 behind-the-scenes photos and frame clips, many of them exclusive to Cinefex.
Other stories in this issue include VFX coverage on Morten Tyldem’s visually stunning Passengers, J.A. Barona’s breathtaking A Monster Calls, and HBO’s Westworld series, based on Michael Crichton’s 1973 hit film about a futuristic amusement park populated by artificial beings. Issue 151 also offers a Cinefex first: an article by Graham Edwards on the past, present and future implications of Virtual Reality.
In this excerpt from Joe Fordham’s Cinefex article on Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, senior visual effects supervisor John Knoll recalls early Death Star design considerations.
ILM devoted special attention to the moon-sized Death Star battle station. “The original three-foot model built for ‘A New Hope’ is no longer in our possession,” confessed John Knoll. “It’s a bit of an embarrassing story. At the end of ‘A New Hope,’ it got packed into a crate and put into storage in Southern California. It sat there for years, until the lease came up and somebody, without knowing the Death Star was in there, decided to get rid of it … [It] sat in the sun for a while and got half bleached, and the original dish was lost. But we knew we were going to need a good digital asset of the Death Star, and I wanted an accurate re-creation of the surface paneling. I figured if I waited until we were in production, I couldn’t justify that kind of meticulous, painstaking effort, so I decided to do something stupidly anal, and I built it myself.”
The Last Jedi In Cinefex