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LOST IN SPACE

About The Special Effects
"There were a couple of very strong images that we knew would set the tone for the film

"There were a couple of very strong images that we knew would set the tone for the film. The Jupiter 1 was instrumental as the big mother ship that takes off into space and reveals Jupiter 2, a much sleeker craft. I think this transformation will satisfy the original "Lost In Space" fans as well as new audiences," he added.

To create the world of Lost In Space, Garwood and his art department and construction team took over 11 sound stages at Shepperton Studios, England, to build more than 15 cathedral-sized sets. The set pieces included Mission Control, Jupiter 2, the alien Proteus ship and the exterior of the planet complete with crash site.

"It was an amazing process for construction manager, Malcolm Roberts. I don't think there was a straight line in any of the sets. It got to be a joke since everything had this oval, egg-shaped look. It began when we were putting the concept of the space craft together and Stephen kept saying, I never want to see a straight line.' It kind of stuck and we tried to give everything a roundness. This non-linear look has a lovely quality to it, it is very organic and gives everything an immense sense of depth," said Garwood

Garwood also stressed the importance of his collaboration with director of photography, Peter Levy. "You can design the most amazing set, but if it is lit wrong, it can look like a shopping mall. I had a wonderful relationship with Peter on Lost In Space. Because of the nature of the film there is a huge amount of built-in lighting to each set; the sets more or less illuminate themselves. So Peter, gaffer Chuck Finch and I worked closely to give the movie a very special look. We wanted to avoid the sinister and show an amazing world that is non-threatening -- a future that is friendly."

Visual effects supervisor, Angus Bickerton, headed the team responsible for the more than 750 special effects in Lost In Space. "It was a very ambitious script in terms of effects -- so ambitious that when I first came on board, I didn't realize the sheer complexity and diversity of it," said Bickerton. "I estimated 600 effects, but it turned out to be more than 750."

Bickerton joined Stephen Hopkins and the creative team in September 1996 to prepare for the two years which would take them from script to screen. Following pre-production, he faced the massive challenge of overseeing three main live units, motion control, models units, and more than a dozen effects houses.

"Audiences are always craving something new," said Bickerton. "We've reached a peak where effects have to be better and better. Now we have CGI (Computer Generated Imagery) which is capable of giving us complete visions of what we were never able to see before, so we are constantly pushing to get something even more amazing."

Bickerton pinpointed three of the most technically challenging sequences in the movie: "The big ones were definitely the space spiders, Spider Smith and the Bubble Fighter. Those were the ones where we pushed just a little bit further than we thought we could go. In terms of the Bubble Fighter, the only real' elements in the sequence are the actors Matt LeBlanc and Lennie James, and the fighter rig. The rest is totally CG. There is a lot of buzz about virtual sets, and with the Bubble Fighter, we were doing a 90% virtual scene. With the space spiders and Spider Smith, there were different challenges and new techniques. There is a lot of tracking with CG, and it's the sheer bravado<

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