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Pixel Magic Scares Up 200+ Visual Effects Shots in Scary Movie 2

(July 20, 2001)
Pixel Magic (PM), a division of OCS/FreezeFrame, today announced it completed 200+ visual effects shots on Scary Movie 2, which opened on July 4th, 2001, by Dimension Films, the genre branch of Miramax.

Scary Movie 2 is the sequel to the very successful Scary Movie, which grossed more than $157 million. Scary Movie 2 "spoofs" several movies, such as Mission Impossible 2, Hollow Man, Charlie's Angels, Pearl Harbor, Twister, and others.

Pixel Magic did the entire Mission Impossible 2 sequence. In it is a ghoul spoof. There are several shots of a ghost in a wheel chair, which spins around & jumps over the other actor (similar to the motorcycle scene in MI2). The ghost was shot as a green screen actor in a cape, sitting in a wheelchair. Pixel Magic's job was to turn him into a spoof of the Hollow Man ghost. In every shot, Pixel Magic added semi-transparent smoke inside of him, as was in Hollow Man. PM distorted his image, and adjusted make-up to get a certain character look with his face.

The actor wore a green suit, and most of him was rotoscoped. Rotoscoping allowed Pixel Magic to control different areas of him individually, highlight different parts, push the facial acting, and make him more transparent if needed. In this sequence, every shot was a moving camera done without motion control. There were no matching clean plates for any shot. This forced Pixel Magic to create individual clean plates by hand.

In the MI2 sequence, the actors pushing the wheelchairs couldn't do it fast enough, so the solution was to attach wires to the wheelchairs and pull them. Pixel Magic performed difficult wire removals for these shots.

With the MI2/Hollow Man ghost sequence, there is a scene from Hollow Man, where it's filled with smoke. The green screen actor was shot walking through a room with smoke, which didn't make it easy to see him. So Pixel Magic created CG smoke, and a 3D-ghost replica, which you don't see, warped it, and pre-staged the movement of the actor by accenting the swirling the smoke to define his image.

Pixel Magic also did the possession sequence, where the actor, Chris Elliott, is possessed by the ghost; and un-possession, where the ghost is kicked out of him. His character goes beserk (like the computer in the original Alien movie), with his head shaking and turning around. Pixel Magic had to speed up 600 frameshots & match-move him, add shaking & streaks of light bursting out of him.

In one sequence, the actors portraying university students are in a possessed house trying to find the ghost. They end up shooting each other. In this sequence, the ghost gun shoots out swimming sperms created by Pixel Magic using a 2D/3D approach for the look.

In addition, the movie spoofed Charlie's Angels, Twister and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. Pixel Magic did numerous wire removals in the Charlie's Angels fight sequence. Adding a Twister spoof, Pixel Magic had to build a tornado in a room and one of the Angels spins around. The movie took a shot from Crouching Tiger, then Charlie's Angels, and finally folded in Twister. Pixel Magic created the tornado in 4-5 shots, as well as the flying cow from Twister.

Pixel Magic also did the spoof of Pearl Harbor, specifically the shots
following the bomb down, hitting the actress & creating the explosion.
In another sequence in the movie, a female actress leans forward with a man's face on her. Pixel Magic had to recreate a male's face, morph and track his face to her head.

One of the key factors in creating the visual effects shots for Scary Movie 2 was the short schedule. The movie started shooting in March, and while shooting and editing was happening, Pixel Magic was creating the visual effects at the same time.

Composites for the movie were done on MAC G4s using Adobe's After Effects. Rotoscopes were done with Commotion. The 3D for the tornado and cows was done using Lightwave 6.5 by NewTek . Ray McIntyre Jr. was the Visual Effects Supervisor, and Reid Paul was the Digital Operations Manager on the film.

About Pixel Magic:

Pixel Magic, a division of OCS/Freeze Frame, spans two generations of
expertise in the creation of visual effects for film and television. Feature film work in progress includes Spiderman, Hart's War,Behind Enemy Lines, Deeds, and Rollerball. Recently completed work includes Scary Movie 2, Driven, Bones, and 3000 Miles to Graceland.

For further information, contact: Pixel Magic, 10635 Riverside Drive, Toluca Lake, CA, 91602, +1.818.760.0862 telephone, +1.818.760.0483 fax.

e-mail: [email protected]


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Related Keywords:Pixel Magic Visual Effects Special FX Scary Movie 2 filmmaking Mission Impossible 2 Hollow Man Charlies Angles Twister Pearl Harbor Twister


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