Spiderman far from home FX Breakdown by Luma Pictures

Spiderman far from home FX Breakdown by Luma Pictures

Kevin souls VFX Supervisor & Raphael A. Pimentel Animation Supervisor

Luma Pictures has done 330 shots. worked on seven sequences including the big Molten Man Battle, the Bar Chat that happens immediately after, Mysterio‚Äôs Lair Rehearsal where the project and drone technology are revealed and the Prague Opera scene.

Luma had about 110 artists working across our Melbourne and Los Angeles studios. On top of that, we had about 60 support crew.

The FX behind Molten Man and Cyclone in Spider-Man: Far From Home. Luma’s work on this sequence received an AACTA Award for Best Visual Effects and a VES nomination for Best Effects Simulations.

Luma was involved in the early stages of designing the look of Molten Man. We partnered with Marvel early on to pitch and collaborate on the action-packed battle between Molten Man, Spider-Man, and Mysterio. The brief for Molten Man was to create a liquid-gold lava monster that didn’t look like lava characters done in the past. He’s an incredibly complex character that grows taller as he consumes metal and he never looks the same in any given frame.

Molten Man required significant fx work, and we developed an in-house proprietary tool called RILL to achieve the complexity of this character. RILL could take templates and automatically update, simulate, render, and assemble slap-comps for review.  It ensured parity across all departments and was the most extensive automation system we’ve ever built.

In addition to the significant fx work that went into creating Molten Man, the animation was a key component. Our Animation Supervisor performed motion capture for the character in our studio to achieve the complex movement of this ever-evolving character as he goes through his four stages of growth.

Luma captured extensive motion-capture footage with Tom Holland, which served as the foundation for the digital replication of Spider-Man’s performance.”Tom Holland’s unique performance and idiosyncrasies are crucial to his rendition of Spider-Man, which we began referring to as ‘Tom-isms’,” says VFX Supervisor Kevin Souls. While stunt actors were available on set, Luma replaced them with the digital character utilizing the data captured in mocap to match these “Tom-isms” into every performance.

For his Night Monkey suit, the leading challenge was making this all-black character noticeable in a night-time scene. The team focused on subtleties like the fabric’s micro-weaves and fuzz. We updated our “suit-up” technology from Spider-Man: Homecoming to work with the multi-paneled stealth-suit with triggered cloth sims based on specific poses.

The big Molten Man Battle occurs at a fairground in Prague, but the sequence was filmed in a historic 1900s town square in Liberec, Czech Republic. The production team staged a Ferris wheel, a two-tiered carousel, fair stalls, and hundreds of extras to set the scene within the square. Of course, it wouldn’t be a battle scene without the environment getting destroyed, so Luma created a photoreal 360-degree build of the environment, including the fair stalls, rides, and crowds.

As Beck prepares for the big end battle, he creates a giant Elemental made from clouds and rehearses the fight in an abandoned theatre in Prague. Cyclone is made up of clouds, lightning strikes, and tornado arms, and Luma designed this creature from the ground up. Since this character is continuously changing and evolving, he was almost entirely done with hand animation. After a detailed animation base was created, the FX team converted the character into a deforming cloud that could be controlled and rendered. We developed a whole new lighting system that would send lightning down the arms, forehead, and ground to illustrate the character’s emotions.

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