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Despite being a commercial flop, 2019’s gritty Hellboy reboot is full of impressive VFX work.
Goodbye Kansas studios has done VFX work for films like Kung Fury and Let the Right One In. For Hellboy, they rendered scenes of demonic destruction in London.
They combined creature effects with real London environments, changing the lighting to set a grim tone.
This bridge scene layered 3D models, smoke effects, and creature animation to achieve its effect.
During some of the goriest scenes, actors were replaced by digital models just as they were supposed to be attacked.
Sometimes, only one body part was replaced, leaving the rest of an actor’s body in place underneath.
Rise has experience working in superhero media, having done VFX for Shazam and Captain Marvel. They handled some of the creature animation and environments for Hellboy.
They faced the challenge of combining human features with grotesque bodies such that they looked like a single being.
Similar work was done with Nimue’s head, to make sure it didn’t look out of place as it flew.
A partially digital set allowed for environments to be destroyed with ease.
Worldwide is a VFX studio based in Bulgaria, where parts of Hellboy were filmed. They worked on over 900 shots for the film, as well as helping with concept art and storyboarding.
They added water effects for the seaside sequences…
...and cloud effects during the storm. Real buildings were copied digitally to help configure atmospheric perspective.
It was their flame effects that gave Hellboy’s sword and crown their hellish appearance.
Entire environments were modelled digitally, helping the creatures and other effects look at home in them, without keeping the actors from doing their jobs.
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- CG Movie - Making Of