saber pull in the formula matrix scene

Discussion in 'Fan Films, Fan Audio & SciFi 3D' started by Admiral_Ant, Jul 8, 2002.

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  1. Admiral_Ant Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 6, 2002
    star 1
    Ok, I'm sorry if this has been asked, I must be doing something wrong with the search becasue I can't get it to work. But, you know when "Zarth"(i think thats the spelling) is fighting servo and pulls his saber, then ignites both blades [exactly 34 minutes 5 seconds into the movie...hehe] I noticed that he pulls it,ignites the blade and goes straight into a fight, no camera cut.

    As far as i knew, you could throw the saber hilt and estimate where the blade would be, animate it activating then switch to a shot with the saber fully activated and the prop blade in place.
    I must ask, how the hell did they do that in the formula? I checked it frame by frame, I see no prop blade as its trown and I know Ryan W is good, but no one can estimate that much of a fight without a prop to go by!

    Unless this is one of digital Llama's trade secrets :) would someone mind enlighteneing me on how this was done?

    thanks to all in advance, and could someone give the link for the search again, I mist have screwed it up somehow.... :(
  2. Neszis Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 23, 2001
    star 4
    The Search is right above this post, nect to the link that says Fanfilms Forum FAQ.

    Also, I have studied that clip and thought a few ways to do it, none of which were wonderful. Anyone actually know?

    ~Neszis~
  3. Indigo_Jade Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 23, 2002
    star 5
    I am not exactly an expert in rotoscoping... closer to an FNG...

    However, I would assume he simply covered up the blade before it was ignited... easier to rotoscope out the blade for a few frames than to have to guess for many many more... :)

    That is just what I would assume anyways...

    Indy
  4. Neszis Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 23, 2001
    star 4
    No, he means that he force pulled it to his hand and it looked PERFECT, then continued fighting without a cut.

    ~Neszis~
  5. Animaster Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 12, 2001
    star 4
    He just masked the saber out. It's not too hard to do. You just have to get an image of the background without the prop. Put that under the footage with the saber. Then erase the blade out so that you see the background under it. I can't describe it that well, but I know there are some tutorials out there for photoshop, and possibly AE. I've done it in MSP as well.
  6. Admiral_Ant Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 6, 2002
    star 1
    granted they could have covered it up, but then how did they do that? I'm a newb at this, all i got is Ryan W's tutorial and few weeks of toying around with AE under my belt, so i'm always interested in expanding my knowledge here.
  7. Indigo_Jade Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 23, 2002
    star 5
    Yeah, that would make sense Animaster...

    Indy
  8. Admiral_Ant Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 6, 2002
    star 1
    doh! animaster pasted before ifinsihed writing my reply and before you replied! I knew you guys were fast...but... :D
  9. Neszis Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 23, 2001
    star 4
    Agh! I was talking about the Force Pull itself, NOT the lightsaber effect...but guess Admiral Ant knows what he wants...I guess he DID mean the sabre effect.

    ~Neszis~
  10. Bastion Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 2, 2001
    star 2
    I personally would like a description from Chris on how they did that whole shot. Blind catching of sabers (could of been composited in), spinning the hilt a couple of times in front of a moving body, and then igniting into combat. Not your average ignite straight into battle shot!
  11. DorkmanScott Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2001
    star 6
    The Matrix fight was me, not Ryan W, and Chris wouldn't know WHAT to tell you on how it was accomplished. ;)

    I'll tell you guys after I get the OK from Chris (if I do).

    M. Scott
  12. Bastion Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 2, 2001
    star 2
    Hehe, didn't think he would be able to!

    And I don't know how anyone could forget that Dorkman Scott did the sabers in that scene! The Mirror Nightmare!
  13. DorkmanScott Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2001
    star 6
    Chris hit me with the OK.

    SO.

    First, I painted out the blades, frame by frame, in MSP.

    (I tried to do it in Commotion, and it probably would have been easier actually but Commotion is too powerful for my computer and crashed it. Regularly.)

    How did I do this? Using the clone tool, going forward or backward some frames until the area in question was a clean background. In "relative" mode, I then placed the crosshairs of the clone tool at an easily isolated area of the frame, like the corner of the doorframe. In the frame I was working with, I started with a click at that spot. Every paint stroke thereafter set down relative to that point, so the clean area easily painted over the blade.

    Similarly, for when it passed directly in front of Justin, I did what I could with the clone tool, but in a few of the frames it just couldn't cut it. Those frames I tweaked in Photoshop with a combination of rubber stamp, airbrush, and (where necessary) noise rendering.

    The saber catch and toss itself was something else. I actually had to paint the saber hilt out entirely until it hit his hand, because in the original footage you can see a pair of hands reach into frame and fling the saber at Justin.

    (He did actually blind-catch the hilt, don't ask me how, it never occurred to me until just now that that is quite a neat thing.)

    So I isolated the saber from the background in one frame and animated that single image along the same trajectory as the original footage. I then composited it over the cleaned-up footage (in which the hands had been removed) and added motion blur. In retrospect I should have had it move in a rising arc from the GROUND as opposed to a downward, as though thrown, arc. But oh well. A little goof on my part.

    The extending saber blades themselves of course were just animating the masks in AE to extend over the course of 8 frames (might have done it in 6 or even less if I had it to do over, to speed it up). Bisecting animation helped me make it more accurate as to the rate of extension as the blades moved. I also added a tiny lens flare to the emitter for the first two or three frames just to liven it up (though they disappeared into the low-rez compression).

    After that, of course, there was no need to remove the stunt blade, although I did remove some blade shadows from the ground -- and that same day I later discovered Rick McCallum's "lightsabers DO cast shadows" business.

    Any other questions? :)

    M. Scott
  14. ChrisHanel Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2002
    star 4
    I can TOO answer the question...

    I just prefer Dorkman to do it.

    <crickets chirp>

    Um.... so NYAH.

    <more crickets>

    -Chris

    PS - As to how Justin caught the saber blind - nobody's asked how many TAKES we did... hee hee. We did it until he caught it. And that's really all there is to it.
  15. Bastion Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 2, 2001
    star 2
    Chris is a newbie!!!! No wonder he doesn't know how the scene was done! ;)
  16. Admiral_Ant Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 6, 2002
    star 1
    Hey guys, thanks for all the great replies! untill today I didn't really know how to "paint" an object out of a shot!
    Oh, and Neszis, thanks for trying :)
  17. CademiaX Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 25, 2002
    star 1
    well what I think could of been done is they had the saber ignited then turned it of and threw it then played the frames backwards. and he stared and ended in the same place. just my thoughts on how it was done...
  18. Animaster Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 12, 2001
    star 4
    Then they would have done part of the fight backwards as well, which would be odd.
  19. ChrisHanel Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2002
    star 4
    I sense a BTS doco coming when Steve gets back to iowa... <evil grin>

    -Chris
  20. Admiral_Ant Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 6, 2002
    star 1
    I'd hate to bring something like this up AGAIN, but would anyone be able to explain how you would do that ulead method in a program like after effects?
  21. Admiral_Ant Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 6, 2002
    star 1
    soo, how about them posts..... :)
  22. Admiral_Ant Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 6, 2002
    star 1
    so did anyone hear that darth vader is lukes father.....?*cough cough* :p
  23. Animaster Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 12, 2001
    star 4
    Well you could copy a certain part of the footage where the saber prop would be later, then paste it over the prop. Erase to make it exactly as you want it. You should also use the remove scratch, and the blur tools to make it look smooth.
  24. Admiral_Ant Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 6, 2002
    star 1
    hmm, thanks I'll give that a try :)
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