The Last Spring was indeed a saddening season for the Fast & Furious franchise when it released the much awaiting Fast and Furious 7.
The film, much awaited by industry and all the fans alike, the film confronted its greatest test when its lead on-screen character, Paul Walker passed away in a car crash.
However, the creators of the Furious influenced swung to this film to honour and respect Walker and his performances in the past releases of the establishment.
In this blog post, we are going to look at the state-of-the-art Visual Effects methods that are implemented by the production to keep Paul Walker’s character alive in the movie while as yet giving him a legitimate send-off.
How the post-production is operated and how the team made efforts to reach the real Paul Walker in the movie.
VFX Breakdown of Paul Walker in Fast & Furious
It was a time when Paul Walker had just about finished a major portion of the scenes for the film when his unfortunate death left the makers in a great problem.
The production was compelled to postpone the release date of the movie with the goal that they could build the story around what they had effectively shot.
With a view to bringing back the character of Paul Walker, Brian O’Connor, the movie producers and filmmakers utilized an assortment of traps.
Best of the rundown were his brothers, Cody and Caleb Walker.
The brothers filled the place of Paul Walker as doubles in the motion picture.
Just because of the hereditary traits, they could catch his quirks and physical performance quickly.
Cody and Caleb’s countenances were carefully mapped, by utilizing the software from Weta Digital.
Weta Digital is owned by Peter Jackson.
Director James Wan is responsible for some of the effects shots and assisted the movie.
Director James Wan is responsible for assisting some scenes in the movie.
He had editors pouring through files of utilized and unused film from the past Fast & Furious movies.
However, the beforehand video streams and audio recordings of Paul Walker were utilized to recreate the scenes, carefully cutting and gluing video streams in the new film.
The work had been the greatest challenge for the entire team as the real Paul is not in the real scene.
But the VFX team recognized the advantage of the cutting and pasting; the benefit was that the own real-life performances of Paul were utilized as opposed to impersonating what he would have done.
In spite of the fact that it might appear to be bizarre and absurd to bring the dead actor to life, some portions of Walkers’ scenes are done through VFX.
The truth is something different in the present day.
Today, with the help of modern effects, numerous living on-screen characters are as of now having their whole bodies digitally scanned keeping in mind the end goal to pull off precarious scenes.
This method is quickly turning into an acknowledged strategy of filmmaking in the Hollywood industry.
For instance, the same method was implemented during the time of the making of ‘Gladiator’.
Here, in this film, the expired Oliver Reed was digitally scanned embedded into the movie, ‘Gladiator’, utilizing the technique of character mapping.
However, the entire task a long time and many Visual effects artist had dedicated their hard work to the accomplishment of the movie.
The movie after its release was globally accepted throughout the world and audience have enjoyed the movie and also appreciated the ultimate performance by Paul Walker, which made him alive throughout the entire movie.
Now it’s time to acknowledge you some of the important facts about the movie.
Producer Neal Moritz and the director of the movie, James Wan wanted “Furious 7” to remain faithful to the film they had started and to incorporate as much of the scenes of Paul Walker as could reasonably be expected in scenes that had not been shot.
Weta Digital wound up by completing a bunch of whopping 350 shots, the greater part of them including Walker’s character.
The entire team of producers and the crew maintained a significant distance from the inquiries regarding post-production challenges.
As a consequence of a paranoid fear of dishonouring Walkers’ memory, they avoided the media.
However, shorthand after the previous film, while talking about ‘Variety’, it turned out to be certain that for them respect is always the top priority of the production.
Not at all like the motion-capture work for which Weta is renowned for the previous films, there were sweeps of Walker to make a digital double.
As a result, the group looked over to the old footage, constructing a reference library of Walker as the character Brian O’Conner by utilizing outtakes from “Furious 7” and the previous films in the franchise.
Whatever may be the situation, those moments of Paul had been taped in one lighting environment.
Weta Digital took advantage of this as they essentially had to relight the performance of Paul digitally for each new scene.
The Visual Effects supervisor of Weta, Martin Hill explains his opinion about the bus sequence in the movie.
The scene attracted ample amount of media attention and he also added that the scenes like Paul sitting still or conveying dialogues in close-up successions are incomparable to any other movie of the genre, as there isn’t an option to divert from the effects that have been used.
Indeed it has set for it a genre for the next generation.
As for example, can you remember the scene where Paul is making effort to go to Los Angeles rapidly and is also responding to the harmed Kurt Russell in the backseat?
The performance is indeed marvellous considering the efforts of the Visual Effects team.
The two brothers, Cody and Caleb had tried their best to match the timing and direction of Paul, as demanded by the director Wan.
The Weta Digital team had been highly effective in motion-capturing the work of the men and reapplying the sequences to Walkers’ digital computerized models they had created with the help of VFX and Animation.
However, the work is not at all finished with this; it is succeeded with some sequential steps.
These steps include the appropriate digital modelling; a broad range of work is carried on Walkers’ skin and hair.
Accordingly, his facial muscles were adjusted as per the requirements.
For instance, the pointers are adjusted when he scowled or raised his eyebrows, though the shading/colouring would flush after application or the way the hair colour matches that of Paul Walker and the hair changes with the influence of light or wind.
They seem to work on even minute details while they work on the post-production techniques.
Even they make sure of the fact that he blinked in character as well.
The greatest challenge of the whole team was to create a photo-real digital human double of Paul who can act and move onscreen in the movie.
As Paul Walker is still in the heart of billions of fans, so it is certain that the actor was known to millions of fans before his death and even after it.
So the character, Brian O’Connor has had to be the real Paul in the movie.
At the end of the achievement and success of the movie in the box office, everyone was satisfied with the final results.
This is the era where technology is positioning itself as a genre.
We can do anything impossible with the help of technology.
If it had been in the 90s, could this have been accomplished?
No, it would have been next to impossible.The film ‘Fast and Furious 7’ had always been an aspiring project.
With the assistance of various VFX companies like Digital Domain, Weta Digital and Scanline working on various scenes; there was a considerable measure of strategizing and additional time work from an “Angry” group that included VFX manager Michael J. Wassel, the co-VFX boss Kelvin McIlwain, SPFX organizer Dan Sudick and others.
All the post-production work was extreme, with each craftsman working under time weight, and in addition passionate weight.
The producer, at the end of the day, calls ‘Furious 7’ as the most challenging film of his career.
We trust this blog will be beneficial to readers as they will get a concept of VFX breakdown of the movie better.
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