Leading design company Pixomondo just shared a VFX overview of their work on Season 2 of Netflix's hit dysfunctional superhero family adventure series The Umbrella Academy, which was renewed for Season 3 just last week.
Pixomondo's Toronto office was the lead body of the project. According to Eric Covello, director of 2D, the studio's VFX work, produced with a team of 35 artists over a five-month period, included lots of set expansions, background replacements, crowd duplication, and some CGFX destruction. Pixomondo delivered a total of 124 recordings in six sequences in five episodes.
According to Covello, her main sequence involved a fight at the Mexican consulate. “This involved a carefully planned 3D replica and extension of the practical hallway. The hallway on set consisted of 3 parts that could be rearranged so the length of the hallway varied from shot to shot in the sequence. We had to make the hallway modular to be able to maintain a consistent length throughout the sequence. It was a great exercise in planning and sequence management. "
The team also provided the training ground sequence in which the handler shot a young Lila. "The plates were turned on a bright, sunny day, but the look had to be dark, smoky, and covered," notes Covello. "This took a lot of roto, afterglow, and color grading to get the look right."
"One of the most interesting sequences we worked on was the fight in Sissy's house where Luther was thrown through the wall," continues Covello. “The plate had an already broken house. We were responsible for restoring the clean house and destroying it when Luther broke. "
Pixomondo's main challenge on this project was to deliver high quality footage in a relatively short time, using mostly 2D techniques to deliver on time and on budget. "For example, in the training ground sequence there was no budget for CGFX and so we only had to use 2D elements to create a very smoky and hazy environment that is full of hits, muzzle flashes and explosions," explains Covello. “In another sequence, we had to create backgrounds for Klaus & # 39; Bus driving down a street. The foreground bus elements had large camera movements with large changes in perspective. The background plates for these shots were very simple in comparison and required a lot of work to match the foreground. We achieved this by stitching several panels together and capturing moving trees and re-projecting them to create backgrounds that match the movements and perspectives of the foreground panels. "
"Fortunately," concludes Covello, "we had a very talented team and some very technical composers who were able to do the complex recordings and make them look great."
Dan Sarto is the Editor and Editor-in-Chief of Animation World Network.