I have been working on my animatic for my thesis film, and it’s almost finished! I still need to review the animatic in detail and see what changes I need to make to improve the film, and also get some feedback on it from other people as well, to get some different opinions. There are definitely improvements that could be made, and some of the shots timing is off and need to be longer/shorter, etc.
As i have been creating the animatic I have made some changes to the film – trying different camera angles for shots and also seeing what it would be like to change parts of the story and choosing them when I think they are better. For example when Pinkguy punched Pinkguy to death, I changed it so that he stomps him now. It doesn’t really matter which finished move he uses, but i am still a bit on the fence about it. It works fine for now anyway/ it’s something i can review and think about. I have been trying not to make any really big changes to the story though, so that I don’t end up adding too much, or cutting vital parts. I think that the film is developing well, but still needs some changes before it is finished. There are some parts that I think work well and some that I don’t think work as well. I decided when making my animatic to change the aspect ratio to a more cinematic one, so I had to redraw a lot of shots and generally think about the layout more.
While making this animatic I have been learning about motion capture, and trying it out for ourselves! It’s been a lot of fun, and although i’m not as familiar with it I want to use motion capture (like Andy Serkis) to animate some of my film. At the moment I think the grid room scenes could be animated in 3D now – where as the only scenes were going to be exterior scenes, I think it could work really well. It would stand out and be different, and would emphasise that it is a different Pinkguy to the audience – which it is. I think thematically that could work really well, and I would be able to (hopefully) capture some really good punching and kicking moves with motion capture.
There are some shots which need to be mirrored – Pinkguy is on the right side of the grid room and should stay on the left. He leaves his room at the beginning left to right, he enters the grid room on the left, and should walk across it left to right and face left to right. Then in the arena he is on the left. It should stay consistent.
After showing my animatic to people for feedback I have made a few changes here and there. The grid room is going to be 3D, so i have began to model it in Maya. The exterior shots are shown first in the film and set the world up, and then we go to this 2D interior world. So it feels like going from this more real world into a less real one, which creates a bit of a disconnect for the audience. Then later in the 3D grid room it is like Pinkguy has stepped into a different world – a more real world, and should make the audience feel a different connection to the character – they won’t realise it is a different character until later. The fighting Pinkguy is from the ‘gaming’ world and the player in the grid room is like the audience when they play video games – in the real world. Separating these worlds with different mediums sets them apart, and creates a different feeling, so the audience feels like something has changed and wonders why there is a difference. If i have done my job right it should become apparent that they are different Pinkguys, and one is controlling the other.
Another bit of feedback i received from showing my animatic was to make the connection more obvious between the controller/player and the fighter. I think the introduction of a split screen, like i had planned in the beginning, should help this out a lot. Showing both of the Pinkguys in specific poses which make it more obvious they are both moving the same would help as well. If you only show something happening once it is a phenomenon, and it needs to be established better so the audience is ‘less’ confused. I say less confused because the audience should be somewhat confused by what is going on. My film is confusing and plays on the idea that you think you are following one character and then realise there are more and more of the same looking character. Is it reality or virtual space or what? And by the end it is revealed that there are many of them, and they are all enjoying the violent sport they are watching.
Another thing I want to mention is the screens. They often don’t have anything on them in the arena, but at sporting events screens are utilised for advertising and scrolling text and stuff like that. It’s something I want to think about during the christmas break and possibly animate more stuff happening on the screens during the fight. When he wins there should be more graphics celebrating that fact, and I want to focus some of my attention at these small things that should help bring the world to life a bit more.