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Pixel Magic Translates Visual Effects On "Spanglish"

Supervises bluescreen photography and composites roughly 35 sequences (December 09, 2004)

Pixel Magic today announced that earlier this year it supervised the visual effects photography for Columbia Pictures new dramatic comedy Spanglish, which will be released December 17,2004. The movie, directed by academy award winning director, James L. Brooks, is based on a mother, Flor (Paz Vega) and her daughter, Cristina (Victoria Luma) who both immigrate to Los Angeles from Mexico in hopes of finding a better life. Hired by John and Deborah Clasky (Adam Sandler and Tea Leoni) as their housekeeper, Flor contends with the language barrier, Cristina's budding femininity, and the eccentric Clasky's way of life.

So... the question is how did Pixel Magic create realistic driving and flying sequences for a dialog heavy film without hindering the director's ability to elicit great performances on set? Answer: By creating a shooting environment that complimented the director's style.

In November 2003, Pixel Magic began work on Spanglish. Ray McIntyre Jr. served as on-set VFX Supervisor and oversaw the shooting of more than two hundred blue screen plates. All of the plane and car sequences were shot in front of blue screen. Filming the shots on a blue screen stage enabled the director to focus on the performances of the actors, and not be concerned with continuity or background issues of a practical shoot.

John Seale ("Harry Potter" and "The Perfect Storm") was the director of photography. John was able to create realistic lighting for the blue screen sequences, which Pixel Magic used to match the background plates. The background plates included two flying sequences and seven driving sequences in eight different locations. A motion control camera head was used to match foreground and background plates for certain car and bus shots. Over one hundred different background plates were shot to match the blue screen sequences.

Once filming was completed, Pixel Magic worked closely with the "Spanglish" editorial crew to make sure that each individual blue screen shot was matched to its corresponding background plate. Due to a large number of VFX shots combined with only two months to complete them, the shots had to be divided up between a few VFX houses. In addition to supervising the bluescreen photography, Pixel Magic was also responsible for compositing two blue screen car sequences, and about thirty-five miscellaneous shots.

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. Services include compositing, 3D & character animation, wire & rig removal, digital film & hi-def restoration, matte painting, main titles, digital opticals, digital trailers, HD/tape to film transfers, film scanning and recording.

Pixel Magic is currently working on "Pink Panther", "Into The Blue", and "Be Cool" for MGM, and "Elektra" for 20th Century Fox.

For further information, contact: Pixel Magic, 10635 Riverside Dr., Toluca Lake, CA, 91602, USA, +1.818.760.0862 telephone, +1.818.706.0483 fax, [email protected],


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Related Keywords:Pixel Magic, Visual Effects, Spanglish, bluescreen, Columbia Pictures, James L. Brooks, Ray McIntyre Jr., VFX Supervisor, VFX, blue screen, John Seale, compositing, OCS/Freeze Frame,

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